Weibling Entrepreneurship Clinic, Growth for our Farm
Anthony and I embarked on a unique journey last January. The journey isn’t quite finished, but our Rent-a-Chick educational program is fast approaching and we wanted to begin sharing the story with you. As most of you know, we started our Rent-a-Chick program when we were stationed in California back in 2012 and then moved it here after we received orders to PCS to Offutt AFB in 2014. Our Rent-a-Chick educational program teaches families about farm life by caring for two chicks; learning how to feed, water, exercise, and love on little critters that are completely dependent on them. The beginning stages of our program focused on working out the details to ensure the safety of the chicks, enjoyment for the families, and overall logistics. In 2014, we created small lesson plans and activities for families who participated, and by 2017 we had almost everything perfected. In 2016, we started to receive calls and emails from other farmers as well an university agricultural departments asking if they could use or collaborate with us on our program. I was readily excited by the prospect of working with larger education departments and the opportunity to share the joys of chicks with more families. However, there were legal and organizational steps we needed to take first. One of which involved trademarking our program.
The real search for information on the trademark process began in January of 2018. I reached out to our friends atAnchor Meadow Farmin Milford, NE. They then gave me a great resource ofDel Ficke, who we had the pleasure of meeting in 2017 at the Nebraska Veteran Farmer Conference. After some very detailed information from Del on process, lawyers, and dollar amounts, we turned any possible discouragement into looking for more information and thus reached out to our friends at theCenter for Rural Affairs.
That very day, just after COB, I received a call from their office that a grant was available through the University of Nebraska-Lincoln but applications were due that same day before midnight! The Weibling Entrepreneurship Clinic at the University of Nebraska College of Law provides free advice and legal representation to start-up business clients throughout the State of Nebraska. The E-Clinic handles a variety of early-stage legal matters, including entity formation, contract drafting and review, intellectual property protection, regulatory, compliance and other transactional legal matters.(Read more about the college and program.) One of which included trademark applications! We are so very thankful to everyone who shared resources with us and helped navigate our path. We are also very thankful for Jared Koch, the student attorney who began this journey with us. Jared was impeccably organized and detailed! He evaluated our whole business formation, and our intent to trademark our Rent-a-Chick program.
After his close evaluation, and the wonderful oversight provided by Brett Stohs, Anthony and I agreed that we should first move forward with trademarking our “Barreras Family Farm” logo. That process began in January and in June we received our official documents of completion!! It is an exciting first step toward our long term goals. We have learned so much working with these different groups and really appreciate the mission of Weibling. Lots of misc paperwork is being updated and filed now that we moved to the new farm location but the process to trademarking our Rent-a-Chick program is almost finished.
We can’t wait to share with you an updated post when that is finally complete. It will be exciting to see how this program grows to reach more families over the next few years. Thank you to everyone who has been a part of our journey!