Ass-Pirin Acres to sell off its donkey herd

WEST ADDISON — Michael and Marshlyn Reed have spent 25 years tending to the dozens of miniature donkeys they have lovingly raised at their aptly named Ass-Pirin Acres off Route 17 in West Addison.
Now they’re ready to sell their herd and put themselves figuratively out to pasture for some well-earned rest and relaxation.
“We’re getting old; it’s time for us to slow down a bit,” Marshlyn Reed, 72, said with a chuckle on Monday, less than a week before the June 22 on-site auction at which the couple hopes to sell its more than 70 young jennets (females). The farm has already sold all its jacks (males), except one.
The Reeds began raising and breeding donkeys at their farm during the late 1980s. The farm with its tiny inhabitants — along with the occasional parachutist — has spiced up the view for Route 17 travelers along the flats to and from the Champlain Bridge crossing.
Reed has never counted the total number of miniature donkeys the farm has produced during the past 25 years, saying simply, “hundreds and hundreds.” Ass-Pirin Acres has welcomed 30-40 foals each year, animals that have been sold to farms and families throughout the United States, Europe, New Zealand and Australia. Miniature donkeys make great pets, Reed said. They are gentle and loving, according to Reed, who will keep a handful of the animals for herself in retirement.
The couple will continue to maintain their farmland and Michael will continue to run Reed’s Sales & Service (auto parts and accessories) at the farm. They currently rent out a portion of their acreage for crops.
The auction will be held this Saturday, June 22, at 10 a.m., with viewing of the animals on Friday, June 21, from noon to 9 p.m. All the donkeys are 33.3 inches tall or shorter, according to the farm’s website, www.asspirinacres.com.
It won’t seem the same not having an abundance of the little animals around, according to Reed.
“We loved what we were doing,” she said. “I will miss it terribly.”
Reporter John Flowers is at [email protected].

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