Charleston, W.Va. – Tourism and farming may
not seem like a natural fit but the agritourism industry, any
agriculture-based operation or activity that brings visitors to a farm, is booming across the
country. The West Virginia Department of Agriculture (WVDA) and the West
Virginia University Extension Service are teaming up to present Agritourism Initiative – Potomac Highlands,
a training program aimed at helping West Virginia farmers create agritourism
The five, day-long training sessions are aimed
at farmers in the Potomac Highlands. Experts from agriculture, tourism and the
business sector will focus on marketing, hospitality, management and business
“West Virginia must promote our farms and
agriculture businesses as tourist destinations. Our state is one of the most
beautiful states in the nation and our farmers are some of the best I have
known, so why not share it with the world,” said Commissioner of Agriculture
Kent Leonhardt. “This is a great initiative and partnership to help foster job
creation here in the Mountain State.”
From a farm wedding to a berry picking
excursion for the family, an overnight stay at a working farm to a tour of a
winery, agritourism covers a lot of ground and so will the program, making it a
one-stop-shop to help farmers create their business, form key partnerships and
get their message to the masses.
The WVDA and Extension Service will be working
with Eastern WV Community and Technical College and the Hardy County Convention
and Visitor Bureau. Those who successfully complete the course will be eligible
for certification as a West Virginia
Agritourism Initiative Business.
The courses will be held at Eastern WV
Community and Technical College in Moorefield, WV. Space is limited and
registration is on a first-come, first-serve basis. The registration deadline
is February 22. The cost of the program is $60 which includes class materials,
meals and snacks.
The classes will be held on the following days:
4 8:30 a.m. –
14 5:30 p.m. – 9:00 p.m.
28 5:30 p.m. – 9:00 p.m.
11 5:30 p.m. – 9:00 p.m.
22 8:30 a.m. – 3:30 p.m.
Crescent Gallagher, Communications Director, 304-558-3708/304-380-3922, firstname.lastname@example.org