AOA fall event: Farm Tour

aoa farm tour 2014 logo announce

Update: Tickets are now on sale!
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Summer is cooling down, and while that means bidding farewell to ice cream stand and swimming pool season, it also means welcoming a bounty of produce from local farms.

We thought it'd be fun to visit some of those farms early this fall, so we've organized a farm tour through the Helderbergs. The tour is September 13. Tickets are $40 and will go on sale this Wednesday (August 20) at noon. Capacity is limited. And as with AOA's past tours, they will probably sell quickly.

The tour will visit three farms so we can meet the farmers and hear their stories. We'll also get to see cows, chickens, and pigs; sample produce right where the food is grown; and visit a brew shed (and try some beer). We'll finish the tour with some snacks made from locally-sourced ingredients.

It should be a fun early fall day. Here's are a few more details, along with an outline of the schedule.

Our guide

We're very happy that our guide for the day will be Sarah Gordon, founder and chief executive manager of FarmieMarket.com. Sarah grew up on her family's grassfed beef farm -- Gordon Farms in Knox. In 2010 she launched FarmieMarket -- an online farmers' market -- to help small, environmentally- and socially-responsible farms connect directly customers, strengthening rural and regional economies.

The plan

We'll meet up on Main Street in Rensselaerville and board the bus at noon. We'll visit three farms and a brew shed.

The Helderberg Brewshed at The Carey Institute for Global Good

The Helderberg Brewshed at the Carey Institute for Global Good is an economic and social hub that brings farmers together with brewers. There's growing demand from brewers for New York State-grown products because of the state's farm brewery/distillery/cidery licenses. The brewshed is working with farmers to re-establish the grain industry in the Empire State, and reconnect farmers with craft beverage producers.

It's also brewing beer. And we'll be among the first to taste the beer being produced there.

Gordon Farms

pasture at Gordon Farms

Gordon Farms is a sustainable grassfed beef and hay farm in Knox. It's run by Sarah's dad, Sandy Gordon. And it's home to about 50-70 grassfed Angus-Hereford beef cows (depending on the time of year).

Mountain Winds Farm

mountain winds maple syrup

Mountain Winds Farm is nestled in the western hills of Berne. The Grippin Family has owned this maple and chicken farm since 1961. Today, the farm boasts 50,000 feet of pipeline and 1,300 taps with the capacity to produce 500 gallons of syrup each spring. Together with his family, Randy Grippin makes each batch of maple syrup with his wood-fired evaporator by hand.

Eight Mile Creek Farm

pig at Eight Mile Creek

Eight Mile Creek Farm is a 223-acre farm in Westerlo. The house and barns were originally built in 1835. Current owner Pam McSweeney purchased the farm about nine years ago with the goal of restoring it to its original condition. Today the farm produces more than 30 kinds of vegetables and herbs -- with several varieties of each -- as well as certified organic grass-fed beef, pork, turkey, chicken, and pastured eggs year-round.

Snacks

Around 4:45 we'll be back in Rensselaerville where The Palmer House Cafe will serve up some light fare sourced from local farms.

Tickets

Tickets are $40 per person and will go on sale Wednesday, August 20 at noon. They'll be available online -- we'll post the link prominently here at AOA.

The tour has a limited capacity and we expect the tickets to sell quickly.

We hope to see you on the tour!

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