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Base Camp Conference Exploring the Trails, Agritourism, and Downtown Ecosystem

Theme: Resilience, Relevance, Connectivity

October 18-21, 2021

9:00 AM – 1:00 PM Daily

3 Days with 4th Day Workshop


Keynote Speakers:

Cassidy Rasnick, Deputy Secretary of Commerce and Trade

Liz Thorstensen of the Rails to Trails Conservancy

John Kennedy, Speaker, Author, and Strategist with Agritourism.Life

Stephanie Smith, President, SASC - a strategic communications agency

Chuck Flink, FASLA, PLA, an award-winning author, landscape architect, and planner

Amy Camp, Cycle Forward - trail tourism consulting
and author of "Deciding on Trails: 7 Practices of Healthy Trail Towns"

First 100 people to register receive Amy Camp’s book!

Download Full Agenda

Summary Agenda:

  • Day 1 - Downtowns are Vital to Trails and Agritourism
    Cassidy Rasnick, Assistant Secretary of Commerce and Trade
    Liz Thorstensen, Rails to Trails
    Identifying Market Assets and Opportunities (Matt Wagner, National Main Street)
    Connectivity by Design (Kathy Frazier, Frazier Associates)
    Round Table: Asset Mapping and Brainstorming
  • Day 2 - Agritourism Connections for Increased Visitation
    Keynote -- John Kennedy, Strong Culture of Communication
    How to Get Noticed, Relevant, and Connected (Dr. Stephanie Smith)
    Benchmarking Importance of Measuring Success for Agritourism Partners (John Kennedy)
    Roundtable with Beaver Dam Farms (Candace Monaghan), Laurel Springs Farms (Courtney Umbarger), and Graves Mountain Lodge (Lynn Graves)
  • Day 3 - Trails Building Connections
    Trails As Economic Engines for Agrotourism (Chuck Flink)
    Connectivity Matters (Amy Camp)
    Tour Trails with Connections to towns/businesses and Agritourism (virtual tours)
       Debbie Gardner, Co-owner, Draper Mercantile and Trading Company (and Draper Blooms, LLC),  Owner, New River Retreat
    Round Table: Building Partnerships and Community Connections Panel
       Daniel Jordan, Park Manager, High Bridge Trail State Park
       Katie Dunn, Special Projects Coordinator, Norton Friends and Farmers Market Co-Manager
       Dan Gregg, President, Grelen Nursery, Inc.
  • Day 4 - Workshop
    How to Take What You’ve Learned Over the Last 3 Days and Effectively Connect the Different Parts of the Trails, Agritourism, and Downtown Ecosystem (Amy Camp)

$25.00 per day
$50.00 for workshop
$100.00 for entire conference and workshop
$75.00 for Early Bird Registration (available until 9/20/21)

Brought to you by:

Virginia Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services
Virginia Department of Housing and Community Development
Virginia Tourism Corporation
Virginia Department of Conservation and Recreation
Virginia Farmers Market Association
Virginia Cooperative Extension
National Park Service

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