Welcome to "Little Red Hen and Friends." We hope you find ideas and activities to share with children of all ages and abilities.

Sunday, September 4, 2011

Peace Celebration at Mattie J.T. Stepanek's Park

                                                            For Our World

 Alpacas for Peace came out to participate in a "Peace Party" and to remember the words written by Mattie J.T. Stepanek on September 11, 2001 in a poem he wrote titled "For Our World."

Alpacas for Peace

 We started the day bright and early by setting up the stations for the party.

 These stations included a carding station.  Guests learned how to card a "peace" of fiber by using special brushes to smooth out and pull each "peace"  into a longer "peace" termed "roving."

Using a drop spindle made out of recycled items, guests learned how to spin the fiber.
Guest learned all about the two types of Alpacas, the Suri and the Huacaya.  They got to feel the difference between the alpaca's fiber and a sheep's fiber.  
Guests had the opportunity to learn all about alpacas as a pet partner in Animal Assisted Therapy.  Many of the guest were able to interact with the alpacas through the use of assistive technology devices.  These included voice output devices, symbols, sign language videos on the ipad and environmental control units.

Before the party started we got to talk to Jeni (Mattie's Mom) and take a photo of our entire team with Mattie's Statue.

The Alpacas were ready to greet the guests...

and then the rain came!

as Mattie said "Remember to Play after every Storm!"
 and so everyone began to play, play in a way that made them feel happy!

if you look at the ordinary closely you can always find the extraordinary

and make that your Heartsong!    
So the party started...

and everyone had something to share

or learn

all about alpacas and their peaceful ways.

Friends used a switch attached to a spinner to tell the Alpaca what they would like to see them do in the obstacle course.

These Twins got to "read" Mattie's poem by activating the switch.  There were big smiles and Mattie's message recorded with his own voice was shared with children of all ages.

This friend got to walk Cosmo "around" the cones.
This friend got to "run" with Cosmo.  These directional words were selected by their friends using the spinner to give directions to each other. 

We think this was love at first sight....

because Cosmo gave kiss

after kiss

and she even had him eating right out of her hand.

Her companion dog was just as interested in the items made out of alpaca fiber as she was.  Who can resist?

Throughout the day, new friendships were formed.

and the volunteers got to share many laughs.

Great friends of Jeni and Mattie made the day extra special by sharing their gifts. This is Diane who along with Mattie had always been curious to find out if "Alpacas poop in piles?"

Diane hand picked each and every one of these rocks and gave them each a letter.  The party guests placed them into words of peace.

and the Alpacas finally answered Mattie and Diane's question... YES they do,  Alpacas poop in piles.  By the way alpaca poop is so healthy for the environment, gardeners and farmers love it!

The end of the party came much to quickly and during closing ceremonies we heard Mattie's poem For Our World read in Chinese by Jyun Yuan and then in Mattie's own voice while being signed in American Sign Language (ASL.)

John and Tracey Klein (mom and dad to Jyun Yuan) had a very proud moment and an affirmation as to why they followed their dreams to open Simple Faith Farm.

Alana celebrating her 13th Birthday by volunteering at the Peace Party and finding her Heartsong.

Peace is possible and it is in each in every one of us.


  1. Beautiful!!! Thank you so much for traveling and sharing your Alpacas and talents with everyone!

  2. This is so wonderful, I wish I could have been there, I love the alpacas! Jeanne

  3. Oh, Jen. This is beautiful. What a wonderful event! Love Mattie's Heartsongs - have the book. And love the sweet Alpacas for Peace!