Seeking Agricultural Grant Program Applicants

The Martha’s Vineyard Agricultural Society has issued a call for applicants for their annual grant program. Eligible are all farm related individuals or organizations whose goal is to improve the quality of life and contribute to the sustainability of the Martha’s Vineyard agricultural community.

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Barn-Raisers’ Ball a Community Affair
Remy Tumin

By REMY TUMIN

Every August, Vineyarders flood the fair grounds at the Martha’s Vineyard Agricultural Society Hall in West Tisbury. Every fall, we are treated to the harvest festival to celebrate the season’s bounty, and every winter we have Island artisans’ fairs, community potlucks or most recently the winter farmers’ markets. The Vineyard is a place of tradition, and the Ag Hall is a beacon of that.

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Beef Cattle Talk

Beef Cattle Talk

The Martha’s Vineyard Agricultural Society will host a presentation and discussion of beef cattle production a 7:30 p.m. this Friday, July 9.

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Agricultural Society, Polly Hill Join Forces to Buy Vineyard Museum Land
Lauren Martin

The Martha’s Vineyard Museum is close to selling the West Tisbury land once envisioned as its future home to the neighbors, the Polly Hill Arboretum and the Martha’s Vineyard Agricultural Society.

The sale is likely to be completed by the end of the week, arboretum executive director Tim Boland said. Surveying work was underway and everything was going very positively, he said.

“We both could see real utilitarian needs [for the land] ... and we feel strongly about keeping it in the agrarian spirit,” Mr. Boland said of the unified purchase with the agricultural society.

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Farmers Agree on Slaughterhouse Plan
Remy Tumin

The Martha’s Vineyard Agricultural Society and Island Grown Initiative have joined forces in a venture to build a slaughterhouse behind the fairgrounds in West Tisbury.

The project is still in the very early stages of discussion and no permits have been obtained, but preliminary talks between the agricultural society and the nonprofit IGI are under way to allow a slaughterhouse facility to be built behind the new barn on society land.

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Spread Sunshine on Farms Not Panels
Letters to the Editor

The following letter was sent to the Edgartown selectmen:

The Martha’s Vineyard Agricultural Society, founded in 1859, has had as its mission these many years to improve breeds, promote agriculture and educate in the “mechanic and domestic arts.” We currently have over 1,200 dues-paying members, many of whom are Edgartown citizens, and our affairs are administered by a 16-member board of trustees. At our meeting on Jan. 12 the board unanimously voted to instruct me to send this letter to you.

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Agricultural Society Begins Fundraising Campaign

The Martha’s Vineyard Agricultural Society has announced what it is calling a quiet fund-raising campaign this week to raise money to help offset the cost of its recent land purchase in West Tisbury.

The society and the Polly Hill Arboretum bought nearly 10 acres of land from the Martha’s Vineyard Museum last summer for $1 million. The agricultural society contributed $800,000 to the purchase and the arboretum contributed $200,000.

The land lies between the arboretum and the fair grounds.

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