Conserving Carolina hosts Tryon symposium on protecting equestrian lands, Feb. 27

Press release from Conserving Carolina:

Conserving Carolina is hosting a free symposium, Our Changing Equestrian Landscape, on Tuesday, Feb. 27 at Foothills Equestrian Nature Center (FENCE) in Tryon. The symposium will feature land conservation advocate David Twiggs, Executive Director of the Master of Foxhounds Association.

North Carolina leads the nation in rate of loss of bountiful, productive farmland to development, according to the Equestrian Land Conservation Resource (ELCR). Nationally, over 40 acres of farmland in the the United States is lost every hour!

ELCR board member and producer of the popular “This Week in Tryon Horse Country” newsletter Libbie Johnson says, “As I travel the area and interview folks for the newsletter, I see firsthand how excellent open, undeveloped land necessary for a strong equine economy  is being converted and divided up. It is a problem that is only going to get worse as Polk County and the surrounding area gets ‘discovered.’”

Locally, we face threats as diverse as giant power lines coming through the area and family lands being converted to other uses or lost due to inability to pay property taxes. These problems are daunting, but there is something every resident in the Foothills can do: Talk to your county officials about how important it is to keep our hay fields, trails, pastures and wildlife land intact and productive. Get informed about options for protecting your land.

“We know from Polk County’s Comprehensive 20/20 Vision Plan that preserving prime farmland is a priority for citizens and the county,” says Dawn Jordan, Polk County Agricultural Economic Development Director. “This symposium is a great way to learn more about identifying a variety of opportunities to protect our rich agriculture resources.”

A panel of local experts will lead a discussion of topics including how to use existing government programs for land protection, conservation strategies, and the link between horse health and appropriate land. There will be plenty of time for questions and answers. Lunch will be served. Our Changing Equestrian Landscape free seminar gets underway at 9:30am with coffee and light snacks and will wrap up about 2pm.

RSVP to reserve your free lunch. For more information about the Our Changing Equestrian Landscape seminar, please call the Conserving Carolina office at 828-859-5060 (Polk County) or 828-697-5777 (Henderson County).

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