August 14, 2020 – West Bend, WI – The 2020 Amazing Ride for Alzheimer’s got underway slowly on Thursday. Following a memorial Mass at Holy Angels for my father I quickly pedaled out to Cedar Ridge for a photo shoot and that’s where we filled our first farm family video.
This year’s tour is staying close to home and highlighting the townships of Washington County along with local farm families.
Ann Vorpahl, 84, and her son Dan have a recognizable rustic red barn and silo on Scenic Drive just south of Cedar Ridge.
Ann has lived there since 1963. “When Kennedy was shot,” said Dan.
The 40-acre property feels like country within feet of the city limits. A flock of geese fly low overhead as a pair of sand hill cranes cluck their guttural call strutting across the neighbors grassy front lawn.
A carving in a wood beam inside the barn dates to 1947. “I don’t know what the initials C.H. stands for… do you, ma?” questions Dan.
“As kids we used to climb up in the rafters and jump down in the hay mow.”
Dan is a retired carpenter. His handy work is part of the fabric of the property from a green and white bird house to a sturdy gazebo out back.
The gazebo serves as a year-round man cave. On the walls are deer skulls and antlers from seasons past. Photos blanketing the walls show hunters posing with trophy turkeys. “That one has a double beard and that one, too,” said Dan pointing from one photo to the next.
While Dan makes use of the good hunting land Ann is pleased with the mature trees in her yard, the hostas that have survived the frequent hungry deer and the serenity. “If I were in an apartment I’d be going crazy,” she said.
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