FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
HILLSBORO PRESERVATION FOUNDATION LAUNCHES
THE LEGACY FARM MARKER PROGRAM HONORING PROPERTY OWNERS
FOR PROTECTION OF PRODUCTIVE FARMLAND
The non-profit organization’s program, endorsement by Loudoun’s Rural Economic Development Council, will recognize families and owners that have kept thousands of acres of farmlands in active agricultural production, preserving western Loudoun’s rural character and heritage.
HILLSBORO, VA, APRIL 25, 2022—The Hillsboro Preservation Foundation announced today the launch of its Legacy Farm Marker program, intended to recognize the many old farms in the Hillsboro area, and to honor the families that have owned and maintained those farms often for more than a century. The program would also recognize landowners in the Hillsboro area who have conserved critical farmland.
Hillsboro Preservation Foundation President Amy Marasco noted the program’s launch was announced the week of National Historic Marker Day, which is the last Friday of each April.
“We look forward to working with farm owners and exploring with them how best to create and install a number of these markers in the coming years that will stand for decades into the future to commemorate the land and the people who have preserved the rural heritage and history in western Loudoun,” Marasco said.
The non-profit’s initiative is supported by the Loudoun County Rural Economic Development Council (REDC), whose Chair Kelly Foltman said, “This program is critical because it is recognizing the ongoing efforts to keep the valuable Loudoun County economic asset— productive agriculture—alive and thriving in the 21st century.”
Hillsboro Preservation Foundation Vice President Ben Lenhart, who lives on an old farm near Hillsboro and is a longtime advocate for farmland preservation and conservation easements, originated the idea of the Legacy Marker program. “It is important,” Lenhart said, “that families who, in some instances have been farming the land since before the founding of America, are recognized by the greater community for their steadfast contributions to keeping a sustainable and strong rural economy. Likewise, we seek to recognize those who have acquired legacy farmland to keep in agricultural production and to put their lands in permanent conservation easements.”
Marasco said that the HPF will reach out to possible participants in the coming months, with the hope of announcing the first recipients of the markers this coming fall. “Over the next several years our mission is to honor these farmers and landowners, not only as a way to publicly thank them for their contribution but also to serve as a tool to educate and inspire others to better understand the importance of these land holdings and the rich history and commitment these families have made to our region.”
The Hillsboro Preservation Foundation (HPF) was formed in 2005 and its mission is to preserve, protect and honor the legacy and future of the greater Hillsboro region—its rural heritage, its iconic landscapes and farmlands, and the community and people who inhabit it.
According to Marasco, the organization fulfils it mission by focusing on three aspects of work: preservation of landmarks and landscapes, promoting local arts and culture, and serving neighbors in need.
“We deliver on our mission through three primary programs,” Marasco said. “The Legacy Marker program complements our longstanding contributions to preserve and restore Hillsboro’s landmark Old Stone School, our collaboration with the Town of Hillsboro on its wide range of community-building arts and cultural programing, and through our grant programs that have assisted neighbors in need during the COVID-19 pandemic, and also our global neighbors with our UkraineAid concert on April 2.”
The Hillsboro Preservation Foundation (HPF) is a 501c(3) non-profit organization.
For more information on the HPF, visit its web site, HillsboroPreservation.org.