John 15 Journal

George and Thelma Hedges of Scranton treated their family to a delicious Christmas dinner and group games in the Vineyard Barn.  They enjoyed their time together so much that Thelma and her daughters and granddaughters are planning a “crafting” weekend in the Barn in February.  They will stay overnight on the second floor.  Do crafters sleep?  We wish them a great time and sweet dreams.

Congratulations to Kevin and Page on their recent wedding!  They were married in Wisconsin and spent their honeymoon in our Barn Meeting and Retreat Center.  It was so much fun hosting a couple who are embarking on a new life together.  Their connection to Iowa is that Page grew up in Fort Dodge.  Kevin surprised her by bringing her to Iowa for their honeymoon and spending a day reminiscing as they drove around Page’s old home town.  It is exciting to discover the many ways that people can use our barn.  We feel so blessed to have the opportunity to share our place with others.


Two families of five have stayed overnight in the barn, one a missionary family to Japan and the second a family attending the Thanksgiving celebration.  Each bedroom has a full bath, one room with twin beds and the other with a queen bed and each has a cubby-hole with a full air mattress for kids or adventuresome guests.  This month a  couple will spend two nights of their honeymoon in our barn.  How exciting!  Between the guest rooms is a social room with two futons that open to full beds, table and chairs, a breakfast nook and a large screen TV with DVD player and computer hook-up.  All the comforts of home.  If you are looking for a unique country... Click here to read more and leave a comment.

Our Barn Meeting and Retreat Center was the site of a Thanksgiving celebration.  Family members were treated to a meal prepared by the hostess.  The Barn has a full kitchen for preparing, storing and serving meals.  Sports fans watched football on the 97” screen while others watched DVD movies on the second floor.  The tables were beautifully decorated by the hostess.  The Barn is an inviting place for family events.  

YALE FALL BAZAAR -  23 plus vendors will be at the Yale Fall Bazaar in the Yale Community Building on Saturday, November 10th from 9 am - 3 pm.  John 15 Vineyard will have jam, jelly, juice, pie, cookies and candy for sale.  Hope you will come and sample our mulled grape cider.  Our home-grown products are great for gifts and as "dee-lish-us" additions to your holdiay feasts.  Pre-orders are welcome.  You can pick them up at the Bazaar or arrange for them to be available for Thanksgiving.  Hope to see you in Yale on the 10th.

Tree house camping has been fun and has provided lasting memories for the campers.  Mindy from Jefferson commented, "My husband and the boys had the best time EVER in the tree house.  Us girls went out to look at the beautiful pond, enjoy smores by the fire, watch a movie in the tent and tuck the boys in before we left.  Thenk you for such an amazing adventure.  We got lots of picture to remember our trip and LOTS of great memories.  Thanks for accommodating our family!"  Amy and Bethany from Ankeny shared a picture of their tree house camping experience.  Kate, Mary & Nancy and their families from Des Moines wrote, "Love the tree house!!  It was great fun!  Wonderful weekend! The weather is still perfect for camping.  Please call... Click here to read more and leave a comment.

John 15 Vineyard Meeting & Retreat Center

We had a great day!  Thank you to all who helped us celebrate the Grand Opening of our John 15 Vineyard Meeting & Retreat Center.  The Lord blessed with beautiful weather!  It was so much fun to greet family and friends, old and new.  Thank you to the Greene County Ram Restaurant students for serving lunch and to Jean Walker of Walker Greenhouse & Floral and Lidderdale Country Store for setting up meeting and reception displays.  

This is an exciting time for the John 15 Vineyard north of Scranton, owned by Dean and Nancy Rogers.  Grape harvest is in full swing, earlier than usual because of the early spring weather.  Harvest will be completed by the first week of September.  Concord grapes are the most popular with those who have fond memories of backyard vineyards.  We also have two other varieties, Fredonia and Bluebell which are equally tasty.  Jelly, jam, juice, grape pie, sugar cookies and chocolate candies both filled with grape jam are available at the Jefferson Farmers’ Market and at the vineyard.

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What a surprise we had when we read the following article in the Scranton Journal.  It pays to read your local newspaper.

     "Rural Scranton vineyard owners Dean and Nancy Rogers of John 15 Vineyard are part of an Iowa State University exhibit on display at the Iowa State Fair August 9-19."

     "The exhibit was first displayed on the National Mall in Washington, D.C., June 27-July 1 and July 4-8.  Scranton was one of 23 towns featured in the exhibit, which was titled 'Transforming Communities: Design in Action.'  The university was one of 17 land-grant universities selected to be a part of the 2012 Smithsonian Folklife Festival."

     "The Rogers were helped by the Small Business Development Center in... Click here to read more and leave a comment.

The tree house is completed and ready for campers.  Yay!  Two trees support the BIG deck with a tent that will sleep up to 8 campers and a picnic table.  The ramp to the tree house slopes gently up to the deck.  The view from the back side is awesome - 28 feet to the ground.  There is room on the ground for additional tents - How about family camping?  On the ground are also a picnic table, port-a-potty and a fire pit.  I'm thinking roasted marshmallows and s'mores.  Yum!   Contact us to make your reservation for the adventure of tree house camping.