Our Farming Family

Meet the frye family

the faces of the farm…

Our farming journey began in 2014 when we wanted to clean up our own diets but realized there were no local farmers that practiced organic methods. When dreaming up our farm we knew that we wanted cows in the pasture and a few chickens in the yard, but God turned that vision into a much different reality. What started as us wanting to provide food for our family has turned into meeting the needs of our community. 

A few months after getting married we jumped in head first with the purchase of our first dairy goats. The following year we added hogs to the mix and raised out our first round of pork in a tiny pasture near where our pole barn is now. We knew nothing about livestock then and learned as we went. 

While we never had dreams of becoming farmers when we “grew up,” farming is in our blood. Our 48 acres of inherited land has been in Ahna’s family since the mid-1800’s. There wasn’t a single dinner at Ahna’s grandparents house that didn’t end in a story about the Payne family working this land. We have always had a rich family farming heritage, but are the first generation to choose farming as our livelihood since Ahna’s great-grandparents.

Our driveway follows road beds that have been here for over a century and our pastures were once home to acres of corn, sugarcane and hay grown by Ahna’s great grandfather. When we walk outside here we cannot help but feel the presence of those gone before us, bringing us closer to the land and our family legacy.

We never planned to own all these animals, but God knew. He could see what we couldn’t all those years ago; the needs of our community, our ability to fill those needs and the urgency to preserve these animals. Being a heritage farm means raising heritage breeds, but for us it is more than just the animals we raise; it encompasses the history of the land we farm. Heritage is much more than a name or animal, it’s the traditions passed down in our family and the legacy we leave for our children.

We are grateful to be your farmers!

-Cam & Ahna Frye

Why alleluia?

A name given by God

For several months we prayed for guidance in starting our farm and for the right name that would become a pillar in our community. During praise and worship one morning at church, the word “alleluia” was repeated over and over in the chorus. It was as if God was telling us, “This is your purpose. This is the name that will bring others to me through the work of your hands.” And so Alleluia Acres was born. Everything we have here is because of Him, and we are thankful for His many blessings.

“The LORD will grant you abundant prosperity–in the fruit of your womb, the young of your livestock and the crops of your ground–in the land he swore to your ancestors to give you.”

Deuteronomy 28:11

Nearly 200 years on the same land

That’s a whole lot of farming history…

The ones that started it all

Ahna’s great-grandparents were hard working farmers that passed down rich heritage to their family. They raised livestock, ran a sawmill, and produced cane syrup. It’s the stories of their way of life that inspired the Frye’s to farm “the old way” like God intended.

three generations of farmers

Ahna’s dad (Gregory Payne), grandfather (Henry Payne), and great-grandfather (John Oscar Payne), enjoying watermelon in the early 1960’s at her grandparents house located on the land adjoining Alleluia Acres.

More than farmers

Ahna’s great-grandfather loading milled lumber from the family sawmill on to his wagon. The farm has many logging roads still present on the mountain that were used to deliver wood to other parts of Shelby county. Some of the buildings in downtown Calera still contain wood from the family mill.

john Oscar’s barn

Ahna’s dad told many stories about putting up hay and feeding animals in this old barn. It was built in the early 1900’s and located on the property adjoining the farm. This is the only known picture of it as it was torn down well before Ahna was born.

An Ode to our Farmer

Gregory Lewis Payne

Everything we do today is in honor of Ahna’s father who passed away in January of 2022. While he had his doubts about us starting the farm at first (because he knew all the hard work that was ahead), we wouldn’t have gotten this far without him. Thank you “Lewis” for all your years of knowledge that you poured into us; may your babies continue to make you proud!