SMADC plans ‘virtual’ Buy Local Challenge Week promotion of
Southern Maryland’s farms and food.
News Release, Southern Maryland Agricultural Development Commission
The Southern Maryland Agricultural Development Commission, (SMADC), a division of the Tri-County Council for Southern Maryland, has postponed the 2020 Annual Buy Local Challenge Celebration until July 2021. The event was to be held on Monday, July 27, 2020 at Serenity Farm in Benedict, Charles County.
The decision to postpone the event was reached by mutual agreement of the Buy Local Challenge (BLC) Celebration planning team, which includes SMADC’s director and staff, representatives from Charles County Economic Development and Tourism offices, and event co-hosts the Robinson family of Serenity Farm, Inc.
“We decided to cancel the Celebration due to the continuing uncertainty going forward regarding large public gatherings as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic and, most importantly, to safeguard the health of our farm hosts, guests and vendors,” explained Shelby Watson-Hampton, SMADC’s director. “We are particularly sensitive to the suffering of many families and businesses at this difficult time and feel, under the current circumstances, that cancellation is the best course of action for all concerned. As the event takes many months to plan, we would be actively engaging with farmers and vendors during this time to set up a large event several months from now, and we feel that is not appropriate given the circumstances.”
“The SMADC team is united in their commitment to holding the best Buy Local Challenge Week that they can, under the current circumstances,” said Watson-Hampton, “We look forward to sharing all that Southern Maryland has to offer.” SMADC staff will re-focus their efforts to buy local via online resources to encourage support of local farms and producers during this year’s Buy Local Challenge Week, (July 19-26, 2020).
The annual Buy Local Challenge Week, always the last full week of July, will be promoted and enhanced to provide the latest information on where consumers can find and buy farm products. BLC Week plans include a dynamic and engaging suite of online materials to be enjoyed and shared, including contests, farmer interviews, virtual farm tours, online cooking demonstrations, as well as resources and guides to farm stands, farmers’ markets and local stores that offer locally produced foods and beverages.
For more information on Buy Local Challenge Week, and forthcoming BLC Celebrations, visit buylocalchallenge.com, and visit the SMADC website at smadc.com for the latest region-wide directories and resources to find Southern Maryland farms and food.