Out on the farm: Jefferson County Farm Day to be held on August 2
KEARNEYSVILLE — Jefferson County Farm Day, hosted by the Jefferson County Farm Bureau, the Jefferson County Development Authority, The Jefferson County Farmland Protection Board and the WVU Jefferson County Extension Service, will celebrate 16 years this August. The free, self-guided tour featuring four agricultural businesses within the county will be held on Aug. 2 from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m.
Extension Agent Emily Morrow said that, while the event has previously been held on the weekend, it was scheduled for a Friday for the first time this year.
“It was a difficult decision to move the event,” Morrow said. “However, the only way many of our producers are able to participate is to hold it on a weekday, as they go to Farmer’s Markets throughout the weekend.”
Four active farms will share information about their operations at this year’s event.
Bob and Nancy Tabb will open their Town and Country Nursery to visitors. The nursery, opened in 1981, has expanded to include Christmas trees, a pumpkin patch and over 30 acres of fresh produce. Located on Darke Lane, the nursery is well known for their signature popcorn, as well as for their delicious and varied fresh produce.
Down the road in Middleway, just off of Route 51 is another farm on the tour, Tudor Hall Farm. Owned by the Grantham family, the farm has been in business since 1763. Once a dairy farm, Tudor Hall now produces beef, pork, eggs and vegetables year-round. The farm is currently operated by the eighth generation of Grantham family members.
For those seeking a peek at a different type of agriculture business, the USDA Center for Cool and Cold Water Aquaculture, located on Leetown Road, will be open from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. Visitors on this tour stop will meet with the scientists and tour the labs.
Finishing the list of farms on the tour for 2019 is the RSD Horse Auction, a 24,000 square-foot auction facility founded by Tim Smith in May. Auctions in the equine industry attract buyers and sellers from around the United States every month. The tour will allow visitors to see the arena and some of the horses. During the evening hours of the tour date, a live auction will take place, which the public is welcome to attend.
“As more and more individuals are removed from having connections from farming, and thus where food comes from, Farm Day serves as a reminder of our heritage of farming,” Morrow said. “Our goal is to let the public experience real, working farms and farm businesses firsthand, so they can not only learn about agriculture, but learn about the agriculture industry that is right in our backyard.”
According to local farmer and County Commissioner Jane Tabb, she has helped develop the event over the past 15 years because of the importance of agriculture in Jefferson County.
“Agriculture is critical to our local government of green space and amazing views,” Tabb said. “It’s a wonderful opportunity for folks to see working farms and research facilities up close.”
To learn more, call Morrow at 304-728-7413 or email her at Emily.Wells@mail.wvu.edu.