1422 Elbridge Payne Road #250, Chesterfield, MO 63017
Phone: 217/251-3659; e-mail: editor@ruralmarketingnews.com
Source: Pennsylvania Office of the Governor

HARRISBURG, PA -- Governor Edward G. Rendell has proclaimed August as "Agritourism Month" to celebrate and boost awareness of agricultural operations, events, activities and destinations statewide.

To recognize the observation, Agriculture Secretary Russell C. Redding will visit a number of agritourism sites across the state - including some of the 55 fairs that are held during August.

"Pennsylvania's two leading industries - our $61 billion agriculture industry and $27 billion tourism industry - create affordable, educational and fun travel destinations," Redding said. "I urge Pennsylvanians to visit one of the state's many fairs, wineries, farm markets and other agritourism stops."

Agritourism connects visitors and community members to the state's 115 county and community fairs; six horse and harness race tracks and 15 fairs with harness racing; 1,200 farm markets, farm stands and pick-your-own operations; 120 wineries and unique wine trails; and 50 farm stays and agriculturally-connected bed and breakfasts.

Consumers can also visit local restaurants using PA Preferred products, tour some of the state's renowned arboretums and botanical gardens, visit a historic barn, explore a corn maze and pumpkin patch or cut a fresh Christmas tree.

Planning a trip is made easier through the state's Keystone Country initiative, an online tool that allows visitors to map out their own adventure at www.visitPA.com/KeystoneCountry.

"Pennsylvania agritourism destinations offer great food, entertainment and education - all at an affordable price," said Redding. "When consumers support local farms and agribusinesses, they help to reinforce the important role our leading industries play in keeping Pennsylvania growing."

For more information about Pennsylvania agriculture, visit www.agriculture.state.pa.us.