said he also checked with the town's planning director who he said told him something similar to what he was told from the Forest Society.
"Our operation was based on an understanding that we can (host these types of events)".
According to the State of New Hampshire definition, agri-tourism means “attracting visitors to a working farm for the purpose of eating a meal, making overnight stays, enjoyment of the farm environment, education on farm operations, or active involvement in the activity of the farm which is ancillary to the farm operation.”
Beans and Greens Farms conducts weddings at Timber Hills Meadows a sister site of Beans and Greens. According to their website, "Our land has been continuously farmed since the 1700's and we are proud to continue the tradition today by offering one of New England's only truly genuine Farm-to-Table events venues. "
|Timber Hill Meadow|
Beans and Greens also has a Pavilion, an 1838 post and beam barn that has been restored and can accommodate smaller events, " such as concerts, workshops, and celebrations, in addition to private events, including rehearsal dinners, reunions, and birthdays ."
|Benas and Greens Pavilion|
An interesting spin to all this is that the official NH tourism website VisitNH.Gov has a webpage devoted to agri-tourism: " New Hampshire's farmers, agricultural tourism, or "agritourism," means survival; it's a trend that has enabled many to diversify their incomes and preserve the state's generations-old family farms. For travelers, the rapid ramp-up of agritourism attractions means that there's a whole lot of fun and deliciousness in store as you explore rural New Hampshire."
So in Gilford, a neighbor doesn't approve of the farms holding these summer events and it may end up costing the Howe's their livelihood and the possible loss of a centuries old working farm.
Here is the solution: fix the RSA's so that the definition of agri-tourism is implicit and clear. It would be refreshing to see our legislature work together on issues that transcend politics and help preserve a valuable NH tradition.