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Contact: Mary Pat Doorley, 440-546-5995
Contact: Darwin Kelsey, 330-657-2532
Brecksville, Ohio - Cuyahoga Valley National Park (CVNP), in conjunction with the Cuyahoga Valley Countryside Conservancy (CVCC), announce the next round of long-term lease offerings under the Countryside Initiative program.
In order to help preserve the park's rural landscape, the Countryside Initiative invites farmers to live and farm in the park using sustainable methods appropriate for a national park, while promoting farming that will produce high-quality specialty products for direct, local, and retail sale.
Currently, CVNP has 11 farms in operation under this program including a vineyard and winery, vegetable and egg operations, livestock, and pick-your-own and community-supported vegetable farms.
This year's farms are located in Valley View and Peninsula. These farms are suitable for fruit and vegetable production, management-intensive grazing operations, and integrated crop-livestock enterprises. The farm in Valley View includes a residence (rehabilitated), a small cottage (not rehabilitated) and 31 acres of fields. The farm in Peninsula includes a residence (rehabilitated) and 27 acres of fields.
This opportunity, including information on the program, the farms, and the submission requirements, is fully described in the 2011 Countryside Initiative Request for Proposal (RFP) document. To request a copy of the RFP, contact Julie Gabelman, Countryside Conservancy, 2179 Everett Road, Peninsula, Ohio 44264; phone 330-657-2542; e-mail JGabelman@cvcountryside.org. Or, visit www.nps.gov/cuva (follow links to farm offering) or www.cvcountryside.org to download a copy. Farm open houses will be conducted on Monday, August 15 and Thursday, August 18; call the CVCC for details at 330-657-2542.
Proposals will be accepted until 12:00 noon on Monday, October 3, 2011. Final selection of proposal is expected in late 2011 with occupancy to follow shortly thereafter. These leases, available for up to 60 years, are open to all interested parties on a competitive basis with selection being based on the proposal's agricultural and economic soundness, responsiveness to a national park setting, engagement of the public, etc.
CVCC is a non-profit organization created in 1999 to conceptualize and help implement a management program for the picturesque but deteriorating old farms still surviving within the boundaries of CVNP. For more information about CVCC, visit www.cvcountryside.org or call 330-657-2542.
CVNP encompasses 33,000 acres along the Cuyahoga River between Cleveland and Akron, Ohio. Managed by the National Park Service, CVNP combines cultural, historical, recreational, and natural activities in one setting. For more information visit www.nps.gov/cuva or www.dayinthevalley.com or call 330-657-2752 or 800-257-9477.