Community Futures Wild Rose are gearing up for this summer’s Open Farm Days.
The annual event gives members of the public the opportunity to learn about where their food comes from and it is raised or grown through tours, culinary events, and open houses at farms across Alberta.
“The operators and Community Futures Wild Rose developed a cluster of farms to provide a full day of activities for visitors,” said Wendy Gerbrandt, CED Coordinator with Community Futures Wild Rose.
This will be the third year that the Community Futures Wild Rose region has participated in Open Farm Days.
Last year 14 host farms participated and two culinary events were held in the region which covers the area from Bassano to Chestermere, and from Carseland to Torrington.
Everything from vegetables and grains, to honey and beekeeping to raising bison were highlighted attracting 2,700 visitors last year.
Participating farms also had the opportunity to sell and showcase their unique products, selling over $44,000 in direct farm sales last year.
As the agricultural sector grows and changes each year, organizers are working to grow and expand the event in tandem with the farms and ranches in the region.
“With the expansion of the craft brewery market, we are hoping to provide an expanded offering of experiences in addition to showcasing a variety of producers, processors, ranches and culinary events in the region,” she said.
On big change that is being made this year is that both the culinary events and open houses will be open on both the Saturday and Sunday of the event.
This changed has be made based upon feedback from visitors last year.
“Having all of the host farms on one day really limited which experiences the visitors could take part in.
“Now that the farms can open on either or both days, it will offer more opportunities for not only the guests, but the hosts as well,” said Michelle Baird of Community Futures Wild Rose in a release.
The two-day event will be held Aug.19-20, 2017.
Ag-tourism operators and producers in the area who are interested in participating are asked to register online at albertafarmdays.com by May 31.
More information about Open Farm Days can be found online at http://albertafarmdays.com.