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Thrive Farm, Rooted in Renewal and Peace

Thrive Farm landscape

Inspired by a journey of resilience and transformation, Susan Mitchell, founder and operator of Thrive Farm, has created a haven for healing, inviting guests to reconnect with nature and find inner peace.

 

Comforting and Grounding.

These two words encapsulate the spirit of Thrive Farm. But they aren't just descriptors; they're the very essence of the farm, the foundation of every visit. From the moment you arrive, Thrive Farm grounds you. It anchors you in the present, making you acutely aware of the here and now.


Thrive Farm Table and Porch

Your approach to the farm follows a long driveway, guiding guests to the back of the farmhouse, where a large, covered porch awaits. This isn't just any porch; it's a space that draws you in. It beckons you to shed your worries and relax. Centered on the porch is a massive wooden table, large enough to seat multiple parties. Much like the farm itself, the table seems to ground you in the moment, in that space. It commands you to sit, relax, and take in the surrounding land.


It's easy to imagine this table becoming the epicenter of your experience at Thrive Farm. It's the perfect place for breakfast, dinner, or late-night conversations long after the stars have come out. It's where you can watch a fire burn, lose yourself in the dance of the flames, or be alone with your thoughts. It's a table where you could spend an entire day feeling like the world revolved around you.


 

The Heart and Soul of Thrive Farm

Susan Mitchell, founder, owner, and operator of Thrive Farm, is the friend you just met but somehow feel like you've always known. She's warm, friendly, accommodating, and steady. These qualities shine through within the first few minutes of meeting her, making you feel immediately at ease.


Susan Mitchell

Her story is nothing short of incredible. Originally from the New York area, Susan spent years in North Atlanta before finding her way to Chattanooga, encapsulating the best traits of these regions. From the Northeast, she brings a gritty, can-do attitude. She embodies a work ethic that, like Atlanta, is 'too busy to hate.' And from Chattanooga, she's adopted a laid-back sense of Southern style.


A breast cancer survivor (or breast cancer thriver, as she prefers), Susan has a unique background and diverse history as a former teacher, principal, and assistant to Ina Garten (yes, THAT Ina Garten, the Barefoot Contessa herself). As if that's not enough, Susan has also completed a Masters-level counseling program and holds certifications to support meditation, equine therapy, PTSD, and nutritional wellness.


All of this led to the now – to the goal of helping clients find their authenticity and inspire them to embrace a second chance at life.


 

The Inspiration Behind Thrive Farm

Susan's journey to Thrive Farm is deeply personal, marked by her own transformation.


"Cancer was always the thing that was my barometer," Susan began, her voice steady. "I used to say, 'at least it's not cancer.' But during an ultrasound, everything changed. When you hear the word cancer, everything stops. Nobody, unless they've experienced it, can understand. And so, everything stopped for me." Susan's life was upended. The combined stress of a cancer diagnosis, COVID-19, and life challenges (leading to life changes) left her feeling overwhelmed. "I couldn't think; everything shut down," she recalled.

Susan Mitchell of Thrive Farm and Her Pup

As she recovered from the physical aspects of her treatment and surgeries, Susan experienced a significant awakening. "I realized I was living in a way that was disconnected. I was living to please everyone around me, trying to make everyone happy, but nobody was happy, including me."


One of the unique aspects of Thrive Farm is its equine therapy. Susan's journey with equine therapy began after her battle with breast cancer and the loss of her sister. She discovered that working with horses provided profound insights and healing. "I knew I needed therapy, and I had a lifetime's worth of healing to do, but I was not ready to start regular therapy. Equine therapy offers these 'ah-ha' moments that can take years in talk therapy to uncover," she says. "The horses help you see within yourself and focus your growth in ways you might not have been able to see before."


After that, the dream of Thrive Farm became her refuge and mission.


 

"I thought about the things that brought me joy and helped me heal. I put them together here at this farm. Waking up here at Thrive Farm is my joy."

- Susan Mitchell, Thrive Farm

 

Guests participating in a support program stay in the main farmhouse, which offers luxurious accommodations and plush settings. The cozy house invites guests to join in the bustle of life in the kitchen, creating a warm and communal atmosphere, or find a quiet space to be alone and reflect. Additionally, guests can take advantage of the art and sewing studio, providing a space for creative therapy and personal expression.



"The most important part of our mission is to be a sanctuary for those who need healing," Susan explains. "Whether it's from cancer or any type of trauma, we offer a place where individuals can come alone or in groups to find support."


 

Uniquely Inviting Overnight Stays At Thrive Farm, the experience extends beyond the daylight hours. Susan has thoughtfully designed unique and inviting overnight accommodations that provide guests a perfect blend of comfort and immersion in nature. These settings allow visitors to fully embrace the tranquility and grounding essence of the farm, making their stay both refreshing and memorable.



One of the highlights of Thrive Farm's accommodations is the beautifully decorated cabin. The cozy retreat offers all the comforts of home while keeping guests connected to the natural beauty of the surroundings. The cabin features a massive front porch with a swing and a set of rocking chairs, inviting guests to relax and take in the serene views of the horse field. The charm of the cabin, combined with its rustic elegance, makes it a favorite spot for guests seeking a peaceful escape.


 

Thrive Farm offers two glamping-style tents for those looking for a more adventurous yet comfortable stay. These spacious tents, set on wooden floors and furnished with large, full-size beds on frames, provide a luxurious camping experience. Thoughtfully decorated to evoke a sense of nostalgia, the tents often remind guests of childhood memories.


The tents are conveniently equipped with modern amenities such as lighting, electrical sockets, Keurig coffee makers, and a private bathroom and shower facility positioned between the two sites, ensuring guests enjoy a convenient stay.



The accommodations at Thrive Farm are more than just places to sleep; they are integral parts of the farm's holistic experience. Each stay grounds guests in the present, fully immersing them in the peaceful environment. Whether enjoying the morning dew from the cabin's porch or falling asleep to the sounds of nature under the tent, guests leave Thrive Farm feeling rejuvenated and connected to the earth.


 

The Spirit of The Farm

Despite everything written before and everything that follows, you cannot fully appreciate Thrive Farm without acknowledging the vital role of its animals. If Susan is the grounding essence of the farm, the animals are undoubtedly its spirit, infusing the space with life, joy, and a profound sense of connection.

Horse at Thrive Farm

"Our animal population is ever expanding," Susan shares with a laugh. "We currently have six horses, two of which are miniature, four goats, two piglets, two barn cats, two house cats, and more than a few well-behaved pups who like to pretend they're watching over it all."


Dog at Thrive Farm

The animals seem almost instinctively to understand their role. The horses, JW (the "old soul" of the group) in particular, embody power and tranquility, awe and wonder. Watching them move gracefully across the fields, you can't help but feel a deep sense of respect and admiration.


The dogs are a constant presence, bringing a sense of warmth and companionship to the setting. They seem to understand when visitors need a bit of extra affection and offer their own brand of therapy and support.


Then there are the goats! Jumping off their collection of toys and trailers with boundless energy, they serve as a joyful reminder not to take yourself too seriously. Their antics bring a smile, lightening the mood and adding a touch of whimsy to the atmosphere.



It's easy to see how each animal at Thrive Farm plays a crucial role in the experience. They contribute to the farm's unique environment, fostering healing and connection through natural, spontaneous bonds.


 

A Place to Visit, A Place to Thrive

Thrive Farm is where grounding and comfort are woven into every experience. It's a sanctuary where the land, the animals, and Susan's compassionate guidance come together to offer a unique path to healing. Here, you're invited to let go of the past, embrace the present, and look forward to a future filled with hope and possibility.

Walker County Scenic View

Situated in the heart of Walker County, Thrive Farm offers the perfect blend of serenity, adventure, and natural beauty. The nurturing environment and the surrounding landscape provide a truly transformative experience.


Whether it's strolling along the Shirley Miller Wildflower Trail, exploring the rock formations at Rock Town, or enjoying a quiet, reflective moment on Queen City Lake, the natural beauty of the area enhances the experience at Thrive Farm, leaving you ready to embrace life with renewed focus and inner peace.


 

To learn more about Thrive Farm or make reservations, visit thrivefarmga.com and follow them on Facebook or Instagram.

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