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Pet an alpaca at this 'Trip That Makes Cents'

Posted at 5:53 AM, Aug 04, 2022
and last updated 2022-09-15 08:49:28-04

WOODBINE, Md (WMAR) — Ever want to get nuzzled by a goat or kissed by an alpaca? Breezy Hill Farm in Woodbine is the place for you. They offer private tours of their property, which is home to dozens of animals that you can pet and feed. It’s only a part time job for the owners who call the farm home, but it’s their pride and joy.

“The standard reaction is just amusement and delight,” said owner Heather Lysantri.

They have 20 alpacas, plus a donkey, turkey, peacocks, sheep, goats, geese, chickens and roosters.

But this wasn’t the original plan. A horseback riding accident led Lysantri and her husband into the world of alpacas.

“We visited a farm and I just kind of fell in love at first sight, which a lot of people do,” said Lysantri.

She said the accident was a blessing in disguise, because she would have never found her passion for the animals, which are low maintenance, intelligent and gentle.

“They are very affectionate. They are very emotional animals,” said Lysantri.

If you’re lucky, you’ll catch them playing king of the mountain, rolling in the dirt or playing in the hose.

In addition to showing them off in guided tours, Lysantri enters them in competitive shows, and they strive to better their genetics with breeding.

“We pick the best of the best and hope they do their best in the show ring,” said Lysantri.

It all comes full circle in her boutique, filled with handcrafted creations by her and other artisans. After each shear, she processes her own fiber and makes it into art.

“There’s an endless supply of art techniques you can use,” said Lysantri. “For me, there’s real joy in raising the animal, and going the whole cycle of shearing them, washing and cleaning the fleece, preparing it to be produced and then producing it.”

She hopes one day to fill the boutique with only her pieces.

“It feels very special to know someone loves a creation as much as you do and the joy you had in making it, they are gonna be enjoying it for a long time,” said Lysantri.

They only offer personal guided tours priced at $5 for kids under age 10 and just $10 for everyone else.

For them, it isn’t about the money, it’s about sharing their joy for what they do.

“Certainly we could probably charge more but it’s not about that for us. We just want to allow people to come in and share our joy for what we do,” said Lysantri. “Just to see the delight when they get in and have goat nuzzling next to them or an alpaca giving them a kiss on the forehead, it’s pretty fun to watch.”

Tours have to be booked in advance. They have also hosted birthday parties.