×

Community farm raises enough to secure its future



Monadnock Ledger-Transcript
Monday, August 08, 2016 5:38PM

The Temple-Wilton Community Farm has reached its goal of $108,000 to purchase the land and buildings its farmers have been working for years – and now, can securely work on for many more to come.

“We reached the goal. We’ve raised the money needed and we’re moving to a purchase in the next week or so,” said Ian McSweeney, director of the Russell Farm and Forest Conservation Watershed Foundation, which has been assisting in the purchase process.

The Temple-Wilton Community Farm is located at the Four Corners Farm in Wilton, where it has been growing since 1986, and includes the oldest community supported agriculture system in the country.

The land and buildings are used on the terms of a 99-year lease, which, while it was not set to expire any time soon, had left the farmers that work the land at the Community Farm hesitant to continue to put resources into erecting and improving buildings that don’t technically belong to them.

So, when the opportunity to purchase the farm came up, Temple-Wilton Community Farm agreed to sign a purchase and sales agreement for $508,000 – the majority of which is set to be paid for through a 10-year community loan program. But the remaining $108,000 is being raised through gifts and donations and various fundraisers being held by the farm, including the latest, a farm-to-table dinner on Saturday.

That dinner was enough to push fundraising efforts which have been going on all summer through to the finishing point.

“The hope was that the fundraising dinner the other night would put us over the top, and it did,” said McSweeney.

The feat was achieved with hundreds of individual donors giving their funds, as well as matching grants through the New Hampshire Charitable Foundation and others, as well as the New Hampshire Community Loan Fund.

Ashley Saari can be reached at 924-7172 ext. 244 or asaari@ledgertranscript.com. She’s on Twitter @AshleySaariMLT.