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bus tours and mobile workshop

Bus Tours

Each bus tour requires separate registration. Space is limited, so please register early! Single bus tour fee is $135/person. Register for both tours for $225/person.

History, Highways and Horses

Special Pre-Conference Tour! Sunday, November 12, 1:00 pm to 8:00 pm

Delaware barnDelaware’s river and bay coastal area is one of the largest concentrations of preserved lands—cropland, forests, marshes, scenic vistas and historic landscapes. The Delaware Agricultural Lands Preservation Foundation, guide and host of the tour, will introduce us to its impressive successes in joining highways and history to protect the state’s agriculture.

The tour begins on scenic Route 9 and includes visits to a historic farm, to Bombay Hook National Wildlife Refuge on Delaware Bay and to Leipsic, the historic fishing village, for an afternoon stroll. Our return journey brings us into Delaware’s and Maryland’s horse country. The tour concludes with a quintessential Maryland seafood dinner on the picturesque Chesapeake and Delaware Canal, the construction of which was finished in 1829.

The tour departs from the Courtyard Marriott Hotel at the University of Delaware at 1:00 pm and returns at 8:00 pm.

Brandywine Country: Art and Agriculture

Bus Tour, Monday, November 13, 8:00 am to 3:00 pm

waterfallWithin the valley of Delaware and Pennsylvania’s Brandywine River, fertile pastures and farms spread out in an expanse of rolling hills. Home to the industrious DuPont family and the acclaimed artists of the Wyeth family, the region boasts tremendous agricultural productivity that is an inspiration for why we need to protect farmland.

To date, the Brandywine Conservancy has permanently protected more than 40,000 acres in the valley through conservation easements, outreach to local governments and environmental programs such as the Conservation Reserve Enhancement Program (CREP). As hosts of the bus tour, staff members from the conservancy will guide us through the former King Ranch and other scenic areas, sharing their expertise and achievements in preserving agriculture.

Additional highlights of the day will include a tour of a mushroom farm, a stroll through the conservancy’s 771-acre Laurels Preserve and lunch at the Conservancy’s Brandywine River Museum. A former gristmill on the banks of the Brandywine River, the museum exhibits an impressive collection of paintings by three generations of Wyeths who have been inspired by this extraordinary landscape.

Buses will depart at 8:00 am from the University of Delaware, Clayton Hall Conference Center, and return at 3:00 pm.

Teaching Toward a Sustainable Future

Mobile Workshop, Tuesday, November 14, 9:00 am to 1:00 pm

Delaware forestWith 100 cows, pastures and croplands to grow corn silage and hay, the 350-acre University Farm at Newark includes a 35-acre “Ecology Woods” and tributaries of the White Clay Creek Wild and Scenic River. Faculty and students of the College of Agriculture and Natural Resources will lead us on a tour of the farm, highlighting the success of their efforts in comprehensive land use planning and in establishing an educational agro-ecosystem of value to the University, the Newark community, and others in the state and region.

Part of that community includes St. Andrew’s, a boarding school with more than 2,200 acres, the largest contiguous parcel of land in Delaware. St. Andrew’s has partnered with the university to ensure its 1,500-acre farm, forest, riparian zones and ponds are part of a sustainable agro-ecosystem and to demonstrate the benefits of preserving agriculture. St. Andrew’s staff will also describe their work in building innovative, educational farm programs, including a two-acre organic farm and apple orchard maintained by students.

This mobile workshop departs at 9:00 am from Clayton Hall Conference Center and returns at 1:00 pm.

Separate fee. $50/person. Please register early. Space is limited!

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American Farmland Trust