Nestled in the city of Lake Elmo lies a small goat farm called Gove’s Goats.
The owners, Scott and Tina Gove, have turned their love of goats into a business by providing services to clients that involve the presence of goats: a party with a goat, goat pizza parties, goat bingo and goat yoga. The couple also has a unique venue for rent that includes goats.
Before the COVID-19 pandemic, the Goves would transport their five goats to a party.
“We would take them out with our goat trailer and we were all over the place. We worked with Stanley’s Bar in north Minneapolis and Lift Bridge Brewery, which was great to work with. I hired a yoga instructor and we were there almost every Wednesday night — people were having a blast,” Scott said. “We started to get very busy and then COVID hit.”
Last summer, the couple had friends and family over for outdoor pizza parties and said they were a big hit. It got them to thinking, “Maybe we can bring the people here to party with the goats.”
Tina said they started to open up their farm on certain Friday nights, and it just picked up from there. “Last year because people couldn’t go out, they were going stir crazy, so this was very COVID-friendly,” she said. “The pizza parties started last fall, and now we offer pizza parties twice a month just for fun. We love our goats, and it’s a good way for us to share the goats.”
Scott said the neat thing about having the goat parties at their farm is that it’s family-friendly and they don’t have to haul the goats around the cities. “What I found out when we were at some of these bars, (is that) people would get intoxicated and start picking up the goats and stuff like that. Here, we don’t have to worry about that, and our goats are safe,” he said.
Tina said their goats are friendly, sociable and love being fed. People need to be aware that the goats could pee or poop at any time and occasionally like to jump on the tables, but they are the veritable life of the party.
Gove’s Goats offers parties on Thursday nights. Scott noted that children’s birthday parties are a big hit with both kids and their adults. “They can make tie-dye shirts, play goat bingo, ride the kid train and feed the goats,” he said.
In July, pizza parties are switching to every other Saturday. The Goves are considering hosting Sunday parties in the fall.
“There’s something about these families that come here. I’ve had couples come up to me and tell me, ‘Families don’t do stuff like this anymore, it’s all games and stuff online,’” Scott said. “It’s been really rewarding. You know how they say, ‘Find something you like to do and try to make a living at it?’ It’s really true. I look forward to these Friday night pizza parties even after a long day at work, and it doesn’t seem like work to me.”
For more information, go to the Gove’s Goats Facebook page or its website at govesgoats.com.