Gettysburg National Military Park is seeking area farmers who are interested in leasing agricultural lands under the park's Agricultural Use Program. Approximately 350 acres are available in four parcels for row crops and hay production. Application forms and additional information are available online or by contacting the park as described below.
The Agricultural Use Program at GettysburgNMPis one of the tools the park uses to manage the battlefield's cultural landscape. At the time of the battle, the lands that now make up the park were a patchwork of farms with crop fields, pastures, orchards and woodlots. The park's farmer/partners help us represent the 1863 crop fields and lower the government's cost for cultural landscape maintenance.
Farmers currently pay $25 per acre for their permitted lands. This is lower than the average cash rent for Adams County farmlands because the permits include a number of restrictions designed to protect the cultural and natural resources of park lands which can impact agricultural operations. For example, pesticide use must be approved and documented. Hay harvest is restricted until after July 15 to protect grassland breeding birds. Storage of hay bales and equipment is restricted to protect the views of the landscape.
Farmers interested in joining the program should carefully read the information materials, especially the permit conditions, to be sure that they understand how the program would be different than renting private farm lands. Farmers should also consider the impacts of operating within a very popular and highly visited national park.
Interested farmers will need to submit the provided application to the park by close of business on April 25, 2014, to be considered. The park will review the applications, interview the most appropriate candidates, and select one or more applicants to fill the current need. Current permit holders may apply.
To obtain the information packet go to http://www..gov/gett/planyourvisit/permits.htm. The packet contains the application, maps, the standard conditions of the Agricultural Use Permits, and additional information about the program. If you have additional questions after reviewing the packet call Zach Bolitho, Chief of Resources Management, at 717-338-4408 or email Zachary_Bolitho@.gov.
Gettysburg National Military Park is a unit of the National Park Service that preserves and protects the resources associated with the Battle of Gettysburg and the Soldiers' National Cemetery, and provides an understanding of the events that occurred there within the context of American History. Information is available at www.nps.gov/gett.
Did You Know?
The Eternal Light Peace Memorial at Gettysburg National Military Park, the result of a cooperative effort between veterans of the North and South, was dedicated by President Franklin D. Roosevelt on July 3, 1938 during the 75th Anniversary of the battle of Gettysburg.