It’s Sandy Rennie here at Rennie Orchards–one of a very few family farms in northern Michigan. Because the farm is situated off of Angell Road and atop an area with panoramic views, it was affectionately nicknamed Angell Plateau by my Father years ago.
My Father bought this property in 1938 and converted it from potatoes to cherries. I took it over during the 1960s. I’m the youngest of three children–and I had that “fruit farm” gene in my blood. I married my lovely wife, Linda, in 1971, and, together, we raised two children and tended the farm. Linda was a major force working alongside me but, so sadly, she passed away in February, 2013, from cancer. I miss her terribly–and I also know that she is watching over me from Heaven and cheering on the rows and rows of gorgeous cherries, apples, and other fruits and vegetables we’ve invested in and harvested, together, over these years. We have two children–Matthew and Amy–and four wonderful grandchildren that enjoy hearing stories about the farm’s history. Their names are Matthew, Johnathan, Kieran, and Adriana.
Angell Plateau - Alice (Roleen) Rennie - Carpenter
My parents are both gone now–Dad (William Rennie) in 1988 and Mom (Inez Rennie) in 1992. My older brother, Bob, passed away in 1999. Sometimes family memories are lost or forgotten over time, and future generations may have some pictures, but nothing written down. Fortunately for our family, my older sister, Roleen Rennie Carpenter, had the foresight to write a book about growing up on the farm from 1938 through 1992. It’s entitled, Angell Plateau--Memories of a Farmer’s Daughter. It was published in 2012 and contains short stories about heart-felt memories of farm life, family, neighbors, school days, Roleen’s first beloved dog–Major, how farming was done, and how farming has changed. Roleen has lived her entire life in the Traverse City area and now lives in Elk Rapids with her husband, Marv.
The book, Angell Plateau--Memories of a Farmer’s Daughter, is 144 pages, in paperback, and available for sale at the farm for $20. Or, it may be ordered at - stonehedgegallery.com, or by telephoning them at 231-2649149. I think you’ll really enjoy the book!
Thanks, Roleen, for capturing life on the farm so that our future generations will have it firsthand.