Behind the Business Scene: Push for Agritourism continues - WSLS 10 NBC in Roanoke/Lynchburg Va

Behind the Business Scene: Push for Agritourism continues

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During October, local farms often see more families wanting to come out and visit places like pumpkin patches.

It's part of a growing agritourism push locally and across the commonwealth. The goal is to help farmers bring in extra money to make ends meet.

In this 'Behind the Business Scenes Report,' a partnership with Valley Business FRONT magazine, we focus on Joe's Trees in Craig County.

It's not just a place to pick your perfect Christmas tree anymore, but there's a number of farm life activities to join.

Mother, Courtney Thomas, says she loves all the extra perks she gets to do now at the farm. Families can check out the pumpkin patch, corn maze, and take a hayride.

"I think it's wonderful. It expands what they are able to do in different parts of the year," parent Courtney Thomas says.

Owner of Joe's Trees, Sue Bostic, drives the kids on the hayride. She says in the last ten years, Joe's Farm has gone from selling 200 trees a year to 1,400. That's a 700% increase!

She says it's all about promoting the business model of agritourism and teaching people in the community about all aspects on the farm.

"That's why we added the pumpkin patch because when the economy took a turn things seemed to be a little harder for all farmers, not just Christmas tree farmers, but farmers in general," Joe's Tree's owner Sue Bostic says. "We thought this would enhance school tours and give them two reasons to be able to come back."

Bostic also keeps all products inside her store local, from the honey she gets from bees she keeps out in the farm, to local cider, and local produce.

Giving people from near and far a reason to come back again and again.

See Valley Business FRONT's article on Joe's Trees here.

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