On Saturday, April 28 from 1 to 4 p.m., Jeffersonville, NY was bustling with the first western Sullivan Firehouse Forum on rural economic development, titled “Got Property: Ways to Generate Revenue from Your Land.”
Over 150 attendees took away knowledge from experts to start a rural business of their own. The event was sponsored by the Sullivan County Farm Network, founded in 2009 to bring agriculture to the forefront of county business. The network is also the founder of the growing agri-tourism event Farmstock, which invites the public to visit our diverse farms throughout our beautiful county, with tours starting in late May.
The Firehouse Forum started off with a presentation called “The Importance of Rural Economic Development,” by Assemblywoman Aileen Gunther, followed by “Land Use Conservation” by Jennifer Grossman of the Natural Resources Defense Council; “Farmlink” by Challey Comer, NYC Watershed Market Manager; “Renewable Energy” by Dick Riseling of Sullivan Alliance for Sustainability; and “High Tunnel Greenhouses” by Harry Edwards, a farmer. The response was overwhelming, with the public able to research ways, first hand from the experts, to secure grant funding to taking home knowledge on the many resources available to start a business of their own.
Many resource people shared their knowledge and expressed a desire to see more events like this and were pleased many contacts were made.