Westchester Grown Farm Trail

hilltophanoverWestchester County now has a Farm Trail. It is a designated route that links a series of farms for 17 miles, between North Salem and Sleepy Hollow. The “Westchester Grown” trail is made up of local farmers who grow crops and raise animals locally.

The trail dedication was achieved by the efforts of  the Friends of Hilltop Hanover Farm (pictured above) and the Westchester County Office of Film & Tourism.  According to Lucille Munz, Farm Director at Hilltop Hanover, “It took over 3 years to get the Farm Trail certification, so this is just the beginning of creating a coordinated effort to raise awareness so folks will support these local farms.”

The Farm Trail designation is a New York State program designed to bring attention to productive agricultural lands and interesting destinations for both residents and tourists.  According to Munz, “Farmers often don’t have the resources, time, or skill set to do the marketing and outreach necessary to increase business, so this program raises collective awareness and facilitates collaboration that will help all of the farms on the Farm Trail.”

Ryder farmSimilar to the Wine Trails, Apple Trails, and Beverage Trails around the state, the Farm Trail designation usually results in added signage to encourage people to visit these farms and helps facilitate future planning of joint events and marketing efforts among the “Westchester Grown” farms. Munz explains, “We have applied to the USDA for a grant to facilitate marketing the Trail, creating a coordinated website, working with restaurants and businesses, planing seasonal tours and farm-to-table events.”

Many of these farms and farmers have a long history with the county with strong ties to the community and are supported by local shops and restaurants, which will be designated as the “Friends of the Westchester Grown Farm Trail.”

muscoot pigsTake a look at the interactive Farm Trail Map produced by the Westchester Office of Tourism and check out the photos and information about the 14 Westchester Grown farms that are on the Farm Trail.  Then take a trip out to the Farm Trail and visit a few!

The farms named to the Farm Trail include:

  • Harvest Moon Farm & Orchard
  • Hemlock Hill Farm
  • Hilltop Hanover Farm & Environmental Center, Inc.
  • Muscoot Farm (pictured right)
  • Ryder Farm Cottage Industries (interns pictured above)
  • Seedswell Vegetable Farm
  • Stone Barns Center for Food & Agriculture
  • Stuarts Farm and Orchard
  • Sundial Farm
  • The Farmer & The Fish
  • The Meadows Farm
  • Thompson’s Cider Mill
  • White Oak Farm
  • Wilkens Fruit & Fir Farm

We are excited to see the Farm Trail designation bringing attention to farms in our area. If we want farming in our community, we need to support local farms.  Keep an eye out for Westchester Growers at your local farm markets and on local restaurant menus.