Backyard Chickens: Party Fowl Brings Up Topic of Backyard Birds in City Hall Meetings

beautiful shot chickens grass farm sunny day scaled

We sat down with Nathan Phelps, who is one of three who call themselves The Party Fowl. Their goal is to bring awareness of what backyard chickens actually entails, how it can be beneficial, and to make backyard chickens an option for residents in Palm Coast.

“We started going to City Hall about 3 months ago now, and the last time is when we met the guy from the Chicken Alliance, whose name is Eric Olsen,” said Nathan Phelps. Party Fowl started in January as three guys from church just watching the Bengals play the Kansas City Chiefs. Josh Fabean, Andrew Werner, and Nathan Phelps are who makes up the Party Fowl. Josh is Nathan’s brother in law so they were already connected with each other, and Andrew came into the picture over football. While watching the sport, Andrew brought up the prices of things in stores like eggs, and by February, Andrew asked if the other two guys wanted to start attending City Hall meetings. Josh and Andrew have attended three City Meetings since making that decision in early February, Nathan has attended two of the three meetings.

Nathan said that they are known for their jokes, that are mixed into their speeches. The jokes he said, are to help keep things light hearted and to help add a little bit of humor in a place that is usually very serious. Nathan had stated that he knew if chickens were legal Josh and Andrew would have them tomorrow, whereas he would need a fence first.

Nathan also talked about how allowing chickens not only helps offset the cost of eggs, but it is also a great resource for homeschooling families; the homeschooling community is quite large in Flagler County and continues to grow. Nathan talked about how it teaches hands on learning, in the forms of building coops, learning to care for the animals and the teaching about the cycles of life and other educational aspects.

Nathan talked about Josh’s stance, which was that many things could interrupt supply chains, and that could mean not having access to certain items and even foods. He talked about how having chickens helps with fertilizer for yards, as well as bug control, and it is a natural method. A lot of chemical fertilizers and pesticides are allowed to be used, but not chickens. This is an area that is important to Nathan and his family.

Nathan talked about the difference between the Chicken Alliance, and the Party Fowl. The Chicken Alliance is taking the more political approach by writing letters to different parties, attempting to get it on the ballot for a vote, the Chicken Alliance even has a PAC. Nathan states that they are both loosely allied as far as the same end goal. Both are taking a different approach to reach the same goal.

We asked Nathan a few questions at this point. We asked him what kind of support the Party Fowl has gotten from the community. Nathan responded with, “We run into the the Chicken Alliance people and communicate with them, completely different methods, but to know that someone else is there and to partner up without actually sharing any information with each other is huge. It is support, it is moving from both realms. When we go to the meetings, there is almost always someone that is like I agree with you or I know someone that moved here that wanted to have that and found out they don’t have it.” He mentioned how the radio has helped as well.

We asked Nathan if they have faced any opposition since bringing the subject up in City Hall, and he replied, “Not with neighbors, I know that one of the guys was like if we have chickens will any of you guys care? None of the immediate would care if that was an option. There are some people that think they are going to get bird flu; and I looked into that, and I think the numbers were for like humans that get bird flu is hundreds. Bird to human transmission is super rare, and then human to human even is more rare. There are also people who just say no, and then there are people who think they are going to be loud or just weird. In town they are classified as farm animals, but so are rabbits.”

We asked Nathan what is something he would like to say to those who oppose his stance on backyard chickens, and he said this, “They are quieter than airports, quieter than children, quieter than dogs, and there are people who will attest to it. I know there are people in town who have them. I like the idea of decentralized food, at least just a little bit. Obviously you can’t feed your family for a month based on like four chickens, but it would be nice. This is something that could be regulated to small amounts, like four hens, no roosters, no breeding, like you could regulate this and you wouldn’t know it’s there.”

We asked Nathan what other methods they planned on using to help turn their goals into a reality and he replied, “Getting more people there, the three of us call ourselves the Party Fowl, and anybody who wants to show up the City Hall and make some jokes can be one of us.”

Whether backyard chickens are right for Palm Coast or not, this small group of men want to help the public see their point of view and hopefully find a common middle ground so that all residents of Palm Coast can have the lifestyle that they would prefer. If this cause is something you want to help support, Nathan has said any are welcome to come to the City Meetings and crack some jokes with them while they try to convince the council of their goals.

 

By Krys DeWind

Krys DeWind has been a Flagler County resident since 2016. She is active in her community and is always looking for ways to better it. She has a community first attitude which is one of the central founding ideals of the Flagler County Buzz.

One thought on “Backyard Chickens: Party Fowl Brings Up Topic of Backyard Birds in City Hall Meetings

  • Maria L. Delgado -

    Nice Article and I support this movement to bring backyard chickens BACK to Palm Coast. Years ago, it was allowed and then it wasn’t as I quickly found out upon moving here. Originally, I thought when I moved here that if I was able to raise chickens in my urban backyard in Astoria, Queens, then it wasn’t going to be an issue but it is. I’m hopeful with the Chicken Alliance PAC and the Party Fowl, there’s an opportunity to actually initiate change and make it happen. I’m a Member of the Chicken Alliance and support their efforts. I also agree and know that it’s a great learning opportunity for the children (as my students learned when they visited our NYC backyard), definitely a source of sustainable food and lastly, as property owners we should have the freedom of choice, all within the respect for ones’ neighbor and community.
    Appreciate the writeup and wish them all the best and I’ll continue going to the meetings!

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