Experts to speak on farm tourism in Yuba-Sutter
* WHAT: Free workshop on agritourism sponsored by YSEDC
* WHEN: 8 to 11:30 a.m. Nov. 9
* WHERE: Yuba County Government Center, 915 Eighth St., Marysville
* CONTACT: For further information and reservations, call the YSEDC at 751-8555
A workshop on boosting local agritourism is being sponsored by the Yuba-Sutter Economic Development Corporation featuring ag officials and experts in the industry.
The event will take place from 8 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. Nov. 9 at the Yuba County Government Center in Marysville.
"We really want to understand the best way to create sustainable tourism through agriculture," said Brynda Stranix, president and chief operating officer of the YSEDC, last week.
"Other communities have done well, such as Apple Hill (in El Dorado County) and wine trails all over the place," she said. "What are our advantages here and how do we create sustainable tourism with our agricultural resources?"
Stranix will lead off the seminar with a statistical overview of the growing farm-tourism industry.
A panel session on general plan agritourism policies will be moderated by Yuba County Agricultural Commissioner Louie Mendoza, and feature Sutter County Agricultural Commissioner Mark Quisenberry and other local officials.
That will be followed by a second panel session on regional marketing opportunities moderated by Penny Leff of the UC Davis small-farm program, and featuring Megan Alpers, media specialist with the California Farm Bureau Federation, Kristen Staggs of Farrell Design Group of Chico, and Jim Muck of Jim's Produce in Wheatland.
Wayne Bishop will talk about what makes Bishop's Pumpkin Farm in Wheatland successful, followed by a final session on "Where do we go from here?"
With its hay ride, corn maze and U-pick pumpkin patch, Bishop's Pumpkin Farm is the star of Yuba-Sutter farm tourism, but Stranix also cited the efforts of North Yuba Grown, based in the Yuba foothill communities of Oregon House, Dobbins and Brownsville. "Local growers have begun to collaborate to hold farmers markets, weekly lunches and wine tasting events and gain momentum on this concept. We want to help them grow the industry," said Stranix.
"Earlier this year, North Yuba Grown held a farm tour and a nice meal all with locally grown produce: There were lavender cookies, olive oil, wine, lettuce, beef. All the products were from within a radius of 5 miles, so it was called the 5 Mile Meal," added Stranix.
Another project in its early stages, according to Stranix, is a collaboration by local interests on a cooperative to establish a retail outlet selling locally grown foods.
"We're looking for ideas to help our community and commodities," said Stranix.
The breakfast workshop is free and open to the public. Reservation are required and can be made by calling the YSEDC at 751-8555.