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October now Agri-Tourism month

Posted: 6:49 PM, Oct 08, 2019
Updated: 2019-10-08 18:49:31-04
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LANSING, Mich. — The month of October is now Michigan Agri-Tourism month.

That's according to a release by the Governor's office on Tuesday, October 8.

Agri-Tourism is a niche form of tourism and is defined by the places where agriculture and tourism connect, like a farming operation that opens its doors to the public, or invites in the public to enjoy their goods.

Michigan Department of Agriculture and Rural Development (MDARD) Director Gary McDowell said at the announcement, “When you combine agriculture and tourism, something magic happens,” said McDowell. “You not only get fresh apples, pumpkins and baked goods, but you also get the experience that goes along with them – things like corn mazes and wagon rides, watching cider being pressed, petting baby animals, and launching pumpkins from a giant catapult.”

You've probably been an Agri-Tourist since examples of of agri-tourism include farmers markets, farm markets, school farm tours, wineries, roadside produce stands, on-farm weddings and events, corn mazes, cider mills, and much more.

And the economy is further boosted into surrounding communities when visitors stop at local gas stations, hotels, and restaurants.

“Agri-tourism opportunities are available in every county in our state, and Michigan Agri-tourism Month is a special time to acknowledge and experience the vast, integrated network of family farmers, processors, wholesalers, and retailers who produce a safe and nutritious food supply, as well as so many fun and unique farm experiences,” said McDowell.

October was chosen due to the "peak of the harvest" hitting during the month, and traditionally families and school groups visit farms, cider mills, and pumpkin patches.

Gov. Whitmer is hoping the month will celebrate the economic and social benefits of agriculture to Michigan's economy.

You can visit www.MichiganFarmFun.com for a directory of Michigan agritourism businesses.

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