exciting project that fosters an alliance between North
Carolina arts and agriculture, a heritage that has
harmonized throughout the state’s history. Scouting out a
wealth of events, activities, and adventures—from music at
harvest festivals to food and crafts at local fairs—HomegrownHandmade
has organized a unique series of Agri-Cultural Trails that
offer a new and engaging way of touring the Old North State.
North Carolina Arts Council.
Making North Carolina a better state through the arts, the
North Carolina Arts Council has promoted excellence in its
many forms of artistic expression for more than 40 years. A
division of the Department of Cultural Resources, the Arts
Councils goals are to deepen the connection between the arts
and North Carolina’s communities; and heighten understanding
of the role and value of the arts to the state. (919)
Questions about the HomegrownHandmade project
Carolina Cooperative Extension.
partnership that began when county, state, and federal
governments agreed that by collaborating they could provide
all citizens with access to the wealth of knowledge
generated by public universities. An agency of NC State
University, College of Agriculture and Life Sciences, North
Carolina Cooperative Extension is an educational partnership
helping people put research-based knowledge to work for
economic prosperity, environmental stewardship, and an
improved quality of life. (910) 296-2143,
Golden LEAF (Long-term Economic Advancement Foundation)
was created in 1999 by court order and receives one half of
North Carolina’s funds from the tobacco Master Settlement
Agreement. Golden LEAF continues to make grants to nonprofit
and government agencies to promote the social welfare of
North Carolina's citizens and to receive and distribute
funds for economic-impact assistance.
However, the most important member of the Agri-Cultural
alliance is you. With your participation, communities all
over North Carolina can learn what it means to share their
Agri-Cultural heritage with others.
Background of HomegrownHandmade
The North Carolina Arts Council, the North
Carolina Cooperative Extension Service and HandMade in
America were awarded a grant from the Golden LEAF Foundation
for a project to stimulate statewide sustainable tourism and
to showcase the state’s rural riches. Agri-Cultural trails
and itineraries, such as those along I-40 and Hwy. 70, or
around the Albemarle Sound, encourage Agri-Cultural.
The N.C. Arts Council provides links to the
state’s 2,300 arts organizations, draws on the resources of
the Department of Cultural Resources, and oversees trail
criteria and marketing. The N.C. Cooperative Extension
works with farmers, families, and communities to develop and
enhance agritourism ventures in order to provide viable
to traditional agricultural
enterprises. The Cooperative Extension gathers
research on local economies, environmental concerns, and
quality-of-life enterprises and shares its findings with
leaders in agritourism.
HandMade in America, engaged in developing, publishing
information about, and marketing rural sites in the western
part of the state, provided training in the expansion of
rural tourism systems statewide.
Self-directed driving trails are being created in 72 North
Carolina counties. The trails include art galleries, horse
farms, “u-pick” farming operations, locally owned
restaurants that feature North Carolina food products, and
picturesque bed-and-breakfast inns.
trails respond to the growth in cultural and heritage
tourism, the fastest growing segment of the industry. In
some North Carolina communities, arts and agriculture have
partnered at harvest days, music festivals, and farm fairs.
The goal of the project is to impact as many of our vibrant
rural communities as possible. The agribusiness operator is
limited only by his or her creativity. Agri-Cultural tourism
can generate income, boost employment, and diversify local
For more information
complete travel information on North Carolina visit