‘Find Your Adventure’ with the 10th Anniversary Buy Haywood Agritourism Guide
The free, 10th anniversary edition of Buy Haywood’s agritourism guide, titled Find Your Adventure!, is now available at locations across Haywood County. Founded in 2007, Buy Haywood works to connect locally focused consumers with the many quality products found in this region. The importance of this connection is clear: the Department of Agriculture reports that US agriculture is connected to one in 12 American jobs. “Supporting local producers strengthens rural economies and helps to fuel innovation at the local and regional level,” says Buy Haywood project coordinator Tina Masciarelli. “Support of local agripreneurs keeps farms viable and preserves access to local products while protecting farmland and the rural character of the region.”
Every year, North Carolina is visited by millions of diverse tourists, from young families to millennial road trippers to outdoor enthusiasts to gourmet foodies. The guide is meant to highlight the area’s many agricultural businesses that imbue this region with its rich culture. The 2017 guide covers tailgate markets, roadside stands, “U Pick” farms, specialty retail shops, local gardens, Christmas tree farms, plant nurseries, farm-totable restaurants, breweries and even Haywood’s first local distillery. Both functional and beautiful, the guide includes a map of Haywood County illustrated by Ken Czarnomski, a multitude of photos and a bruschetta recipe from Louis and Frank Perrone of Frankie’s Italian Trattoria in Maggie Valley.
Jessica DeMarco, owner of Copper Pot & Wooden Spoon, got her start in 2011 selling her pickles, jams and artisanal foods at Haywood’s Historic Farmers Market in Waynesville, where she is still a vendor. DeMarco works with local farms to make her products and uses the guide to find new farms with whom she can partner. “The agritourism guide is a great resource for Haywood county residents and visitors as it brings together all of our area’s farming heritage, agricultural and local food destinations and events in one place,” DeMarco says. “We have seen so much growth in this area with new and interesting agribusinesses starting all the time. Buy Haywood has continually worked to bring our beautiful farms and food heritage to the forefront of our county’s attention.”
Steve and Terry King have been selling food from their farm at Haywood’s Historic Farmers Market for almost eight years. Their sales at the market are a vital part of the revenue that keeps their farm running. “Over the years, I’ve worried that the local food movement was just a fad that would fade as soon as the next new thing came along,” says Steve King. “But it seems like the popularity of our market is stronger than ever and I’m sure much of our success is dependent on publications such as the guide for keeping us in the public’s mind.”
Buy Haywood is located at 28 Walnut Street, Suite 4, in Waynesville. For more information, including a list of locations to pick up the guide and a digital version of the guide for download, visit buyhaywood.com.