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Get a close-up look at the food chain

Local farms show off their homegrown wares

POSTED: June 28, 2012 12:30 a.m.

From staff reports

Looking for a fresh way to spend a weekend in the mountains? The inaugural Georgia Mountains Farm Tour will showcase some of the farms, farmers, markets, community gardens and restaurants that supply food in Northeast Georgia.

Held by the Georgia Mountains Farmers Network and the Soque River Watershed Association, the event is set for 1-6 p.m. Saturday June 30 and Sunday, July 1. It will feature 14 farms in Hall, Habersham, Rabun, White and Stephens counties, two community gardens and optional meal stops with foods prepared by local chefs.

Participants can purchase one weekend pass that allows entry to any farm both days.

Amongst the products featured are numerous fruit and vegetables; a dairy cow creamery with milk, cream, butter and ice cream; pastured eggs; certified organic beef; and water wheel milled grains and associated baked goods. Other highlights include a demonstration of horse-powered equipment, an aquaponic farm for tilapia production and several farms using hoop houses for season extension.

“Northeast Georgia has developed an organized, energetic and expanding farming community in just the last few years,” says Justin Ellis, SRWA director and organizer for the new farmers network. “We felt like the time was ripe to share our unique food and farming experience with as many people as possible.”

The cost is $35 per carload for weekend passes and can be purchased online at www.soque.org. All weekend passes include a $5 gift certificate to the Locally Grown or Simply Homegrown markets.

Proceeds of the event will help benefit the new farmers network.

Farms and gardens included on the tour include: Hall County, Cedar Hill Enrichment Center; White County, LoganBerry Heritage Farm, Mountain Fresh Creamery, Nacoochee Valley Farm, Cairn Rock Farm; Habersham County, Indian Ridge Farm, Royal Oaks Farm, Melon Head Farm, GreenWay Community Garden, Copper Pot Gardens; Rabun County, Burton Mountain Farm, Sylvan Falls Mill, Old School Garden, Lake Rabun Hotel and Restaurant; plus Jan and Zen’s Garden (Franklin County), Taylor Creek Farm (Stephens County), Gibson Farms (Westminster, S.C.) and Leah Lakes Farm (Macon County, N.C.)

For more information, visit www.soque.org, e-mail soque@windstream.net or call 706-754-9382.


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