Meet Our Staff Supervisory Team

Meet Our Staff: Supervisory Team

Every employee at Cherry Crest Adventure Farm is important, but if you’ve ever visited, you have probably noticed a few crazy people in red shirts that may never seem to stand still. They are the members of our supervisory team here at the farm. Here is your chance to get to know those charged with “leading the charge”.

Chief Operations Officer and Scheduling Supervisor- Shelly Temple

Shelly Temple.JPG Chief Operations Officer and Scheduling Supervisor- Shelly Temple

Shelly is our Chief Operations Officer, so she handles general management of the adventure farm as a whole, but particularly the ticket booths. She also has the daunting task of scheduling all of our (close to) 200 employees. During the preseason months, she helps her sister Sherri set up the retail stations.

How did you come to be working at Cherry Crest?

Well, I am a daughter to the owners Jack and Donna. I was in college when they started Cherry Crest Adventure Farm and I worked there during summer vacations. After college I continued working behind the scenes doing the scheduling until 2006 when my husband and I bought the neighboring farm and opened Cherry Crest Meadows vacation home in part of the farm house. Working as a RN part time, running the vacation home, and having 3 boys was enough to handle!! But in 2014 I was ready for a career change and left nursing to return to the family farm.

What is your favorite part about working at Cherry Crest?

I love the family aspect of Cherry Crest. Not only is it family owned and operated, many members of our staff have multiple family members working here. I think it creates a unique atmosphere. We all feel like one big family!

What do you like to do when you are not working at Cherry Crest?

I have 3 boys who play multiple sports which makes life crazy and fun at the same time. Most of my “free” time is spent driving to and from practices or watching their games.

Retail Supervisor- Sherri Groff

Sherri Groff.JPG Retail Supervisor- Sherri Groff

Sherri is in charge of the retail aspect of Cherry Crest, so that means she is in charge of the General Store, the Sweet Shop, the Trading Post, the Spring Market Stand (spring only) and the Glow Shed (fall only). She handles ordering and stocking of all the displays in each of these stands.

How did you come to be working at Cherry Crest?

I started at CCAF when it first started. My husband Brian and I wanted to be a part of the dream that my parents had for the farm. I worked at CCAF and also worked PT at my other job at a Veterinary hospital as a Bookkeeper. I continued to work part time at CCAF until 2006 when I was offered a fulltime management opportunity at the veterinary hospital and decided to take it. After several years in the corporate world I decided it was not for me and was so excited to come back fulltime to the farm in 2014.

What is your favorite part about working at Cherry Crest?

Being a part of educating people about agriculture and our family’s heritage is huge part of why I like working here! I also enjoy seeing families having fun together and making memories. I love working with our wonderful staff and am thankful for the friendships I make.

What do you like to do when you are not working at Cherry Crest?

When not at CCAF I enjoy spending time at the beach soaking up the sun and relaxing with my family & riding 4x4 at our upstate NY cabin. I also love trying new restaurants and finding fun little towns to explore with my husband!

Entertainment and Creativity Supervisor- Liesl Knauer

Liesl Knauer.JPG Entertainment and Creativity Supervisor- Liesl Knauer

When you have a place like Cherry Crest, it’s nice to have your own resident artist and ours is Liesl. Whether painting or entertaining, her talent is impeccable, and you can’t step foot on our farm without seeing some of her work. She spends much of our off season creating artwork for our farm, such as our maze photo ops, and each spring leads a staining crew to spruce up any buildings that need it. She also writes the scripts for any shows on the farm (such as the pig races and puppet shows) and leads the actors in rehearsal.

If being in charge of the artistic side of Cherry Crest isn’t enough, Liesl also has several other jobs. She is our social media person so she makes all the posts on the Cherry Crest Facebook and Instagram pages as well as writing the Cherry Crest blog. During the season she leads our morning staff meetings which includes giving a devotional and keeping us up to date with any announcements. She plans and runs events such as Facebook Fan Appreciation Day and the Pumpkin Madness Festival. Finally, she is in charge of Guest Services so she deals with any guest issues including lost and found and first aid incidents.

How did you come to be working at Cherry Crest?

I visited the maze a few times when I was in junior high, and always enjoyed it. One day my mom and I were talking to a homeschooling family about summer work opportunities, and a few of their teens had just gotten jobs at the maze. I decided to give it a try and applied for a job. Cherry Crest was hiring at the time, so I had an interview, was offered a job, filled out paperwork, and started working all in about a week’s time! I’ve been here ever since and what started as a high school summer job turned into a full time supervisory position after I graduated from college.

What is your favorite part about working at Cherry Crest?

One of the things I’ve always loved about Cherry Crest is the family atmosphere: everyone who works here truly is a part of the family! I also really enjoy the variety of jobs that I get to do now as a supervisor—one day I’m painting in the shop, the next day I’m attending a social media seminar, and the next day I’m leading a rehearsal for Pig Races. There’s never a dull moment around the farm!

What do you like to do when you are not working at Cherry Crest?

I’m a big reader, so I have a never-ending book list that I’m constantly working on. I’m a freelance artist who specializes in custom paintings and signs. I also do occasional stage management and box office work at PRiMA Theatre (a local theatre company), and in the winter months, my husband and I coach a bible quizzing team at our church (part of the ACC Bible Quizzing Program).

Office Supervisor- Missy Hoover

Missy Hoover.JPG Office Supervisor- Missy Hoover

Missy is often the first person people talk to at Cherry Crest. If you contact Cherry Crest, you will most likely speak to her. She is the contact person for camp groups looking to spend a day at the farm, school groups coming on a field trip, and people that want to rent our Gathering Barns and fall campfire sites. She is often the person that welcomes and checks those groups in when they arrive to spend their day at the farm as well. She handles employee paperwork and works with our time-clock system and payroll. She makes/prints signs, keeps our station binders stocked and orders most of the supplies we use at each station. And she is always happy to help! She spends most of her time in the office, but can be spotted around the Adventure Farm at times when needed.

How did you come to be working at Cherry Crest?

I came to work at the farm through my oldest two boys, Joel and Brandon. They worked their first summer at CCAF and came home saying that the farm needed help for the fall. Stay-at-home moms were perfect and that’s what I was at the time.

What is your favorite part about working at Cherry Crest?

My favorite part of working at the farm is the privilege of being a part of such a great team of people working to fulfill the mission, vision and values of CCAF. The support of everyone from the top down is so amazing.

What do you like to do when you are not working at Cherry Crest?

When I am not working, I love supporting the various activities that my kids are still involved in (college soccer, ultimate Frisbee, listening to Joel’s streamed sporting events calls from Minnesota & anything else they are doing). I also enjoy reading, doing puzzles and spending time with family & extended family.

Food Supervisor- Brian Groff

Brian Groff.JPG Food Supervisor- Brian Groff

Brian is in charge of all things food. That involves ordering, stocking, maintaining and fixing food machines etc. Our food areas are scattered all across the property so he is quite busy running around the entire property most days. Besides food, Brian also helps with our website and advertising.

How did you come to be working at Cherry Crest?

I married Jack and Donna’s oldest daughter Sherri in 1993 and soon became part of the family business.

What is your favorite part about working at Cherry Crest?

I am a people person so I love interacting with our staff and guests.

What do you like to do when you are not working at Cherry Crest?

I like to ride 4 wheeler and hunt. I also like to travel. To me, unplanned, “let’s just go and see what we find” road trips are the best!

Maze Supervisors- Shirley and Logan Garber

Shirley and Logan Garber.JPG Maze Supervisors- Shirley and Logan Garber

Our maze is run by a mother and son team: Shirley and Logan. As you may imagine, getting the maze ready is quite a job. Shirley and Logan are part of a team that chooses a maze design for the following season before the current season is even over. Over the winter they go back and forth with our designer on how the maze will look and come up with ideas of what theme related activities we will include within the maze. Come June, it is all hands on deck as they lead a team of people to actually map out the design of the maze, to place all of those “extras” inside it, and to put the colored tape along the pathways through the corn to designate the different sections of the maze. (I wrote that in one sentence, but trust me, it is a BIG job!) When the actual season rolls around they are in charge of any employees working in the maze and maintaining the maze so that it lasts all the way until the beginning of November.

How did you come to be working at Cherry Crest?

Shirley- My two older children, Jen and Kendall, worked here and enjoyed it so I decided to join the fun. With my background in farming and education, it is a perfect fit for this “retired” teacher. And now I get to manage the maze with my youngest.

Logan- As my mom mentioned, my siblings worked here during the summers and when I was old enough I wanted to start working here too. I've been working here for 6 years now.

What is your favorite part about working at Cherry Crest?

Shirley- I love the family atmosphere here. And by that I mean that everyone that works here truly feels like a family. They genuinely care about each other and are always willing to help each other out. And that spills over into creating a great environment for our guest families to enjoy their day. I also love that my job includes doing such a variety of things. My favorite thing work wise is pre-season. Getting the maze ready is a lot of hard work, but it is very rewarding and satisfying work. It is fun to see all of our off-season ideas come to fruition!

Logan- What I love about working about my work here at CCAF is just the family atmosphere that we have and the mission to grow people in responsibility and to help them understand what it feels like to be in the workforce. To be able to work with youth and help them grow is one of my passions and CCAF is a perfect place for that. On top of that I enjoy doing the physical labor, whether it be building the maze before the summer season starts or doing building projects during the winter months.

What do you like to do when you are not working at Cherry Crest?

Shirley- Everyone who knows me knows I have fully embraced and enjoy the roll of Mimi. I have 4 grandsons who I love spending time with. It is also great that they can come visit me at work and have fun!

Logan- I love to play music! God has blessed me with a good singing voice and ability to play the guitar, bass guitar, and drums. I help lead worship at my church and work the the Jr youth group that meets during the week. I enjoy playing volleyball and ultimate frisbee when I get the opportunity. During my downtime it’s spending time with the Lord and family.

Courtyard Supervisor- Chris Brody

Chris Brody.JPG Courtyard Supervisor- Chris Brody

The Courtyard is the first thing you enter when you come in to Cherry Crest. It is home to our main food and bathroom areas as well as our petting zoo, so a large part of the work that Chris and her staff do is custodial. They clean bathrooms, pick up trash and weed the flower beds among other things. They also do the daily butter-making demonstrations on the Discovery Barn stage. The courtyard also has the Wagon Express ride and the pedal carts, so Chris makes sure those are in proper working order (and that is not always an easy task, trust me). At the end of the day, Chris is in charge of collecting all the trash that we have gathered throughout the day and taking it to the dumpster. This can be a dirty, smelly task at times, but she always does it with a smile on her face.

How did you come to be working at Cherry Crest?

I am originally a Philly girl. I ended up here in Lancaster County when my husband accepted a job as a pastor up here. I applied at CCAF looking for a part time fall job when the kids were all in full day school 2010.

What is your favorite part about working at Cherry Crest?

My favorite part of CCAF is the employees I work with and our great Christian based job environment. As I mentioned above, I am originally from the city, so I also like that I get to use the tractor and trucks.

What do you like to do when you are not working at Cherry Crest?

My spare time is divided between my kids, making fleece baby blankets and walking our chocolate lab.

Barnyard Supervisors- Jonathan Thompson and Courtney Bender

Jonathan Thompson and Courtney Bender.JPG Barnyard Supervisors- Jonathan Thompson and Courtney Bender

Across the RR tracks is our Barnyard area. The Barnyard holds many of our attractions such as our massive slides and Jump Pillows, so a big part of Jonathan and Courtney’s job is maintaining equipment (and fixing it if necessary). Broken slingshots, making sure the Ballcade balls are properly inflated and in good shape, and re-adjusting of the post pounders and slide cushion can be a daily occurrence. There are also more eating areas, bathrooms and flowerbeds in the Barnyard so there is a decent amount of custodial work up there as well. The Barnyard has been expanding quite a bit the past couple years so their job is ever-growing!

How did you come to be working at Cherry Crest?

Jonathan- I needed a job and my brother heard an ad on the radio for Cherry Crest and I decided to apply.

Courtney- I have been a substitute teacher for many years and I would typically spend my summers working at Clipper Magazine Stadium (home of Lancaster Barnstormers baseball) and I also taught Title I kids in a summer reading program in the Solanco School District. Unfortunately, that program is based on federal funding and a few years ago they discovered they were not going to receive the funding so they cancelled the program. I was trying to decide where to look for another job when I saw a Facebook ad for Cherry Crest that they were hiring. The rest, as they say, is history. My only regret is not finding CCAF as a place of employment sooner!

What is your favorite part about working at Cherry Crest?

Jonathan- I really enjoy the people I get to work with. We work hard, but have a lot of fun too. Like others have said, this is like a 2nd family.

Courtney- First of all, I appreciate the fact that this is a Christian-run business and we are not ashamed of that fact. We also have a great staff (which is really more like a family), and as a member of that staff, you definitely feel appreciated by Jack and Donna (Cherry Crest’s owners). Finally, one of the other great things about Cherry Crest is that every day is different. We have a routine to an extent, but you never really know what might happen and that’s half of the fun/challenge. Cherry Crest is just a really fun place to work!

What do you like to do when you are not working at Cherry Crest?

Jonathan- I am a Civil War re-enactor, which I have been doing since 2007. I am part of the 1st PA Reserves, Company D.

Courtney- I am pretty active in my church. I play the drums on worship team, teach the kids Sunday School class once a month and run the Wed night kids program. My biggest passion is leading my church’s efforts in Franklin Graham’s Shoebox Project, which is a year round endeavor! And I enjoy spending time with my family, especially my nieces and nephew.

Besides the duties listed above, each supervisor or supervisor pair is responsible for over-seeing any employees in their area and making sure those employees get breaks. And while each supervisor or pair of supervisors has their own area that they “specialize” in, they also each have at least a basic knowledge of most aspects of the farm (and some of them have worked in those areas in the past). They are always willing to step in and help another supervisor or employee if needed. Teamwork is the name of the game at Cherry Crest and among the supervisors there is no exception!

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Cherry Crest Adventure Farm | 150 Cherry Hill Rd, Ronks PA 17572 | 1-866-546-1799