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By Trevor Anderson, Upstate Business Journal
Spartanburg County residents and visitors have a new digital tool that will help them find agricultural activities in the community.
The Spartanburg Convention and Visitors Bureau (SCVB) announced it has launched Grown in Spartanburg, a mobile-friendly website that features local farms, food stands, and farmers’ markets.
A map on the site highlights several destinations in the county and provides a phone number, directions, hours of operation, and a brief description of each farm, stand or market.
“We want travelers to understand the importance of agriculture in Spartanburg County, visit working farms, and buy local, farm-fresh products,” said Chris Jennings, executive vice president of the SCVB. “The Grown in Spartanburg tour allows visitors to get up close and personal with the people and places that make up Spartanburg’s diverse agricultural offerings.”
Jennings said there are a lot more agricultural opportunities than most people realize in the county. The SCVB focused on destinations that are regularly open to the public.
“We said ‘Hey, let’s let folks get out and about and see some of these great offerings we have,’” he said. “I know of at least two or three towns that have had farmers’ markets. We’ll add to this list… When folks are here, they want to see, taste, and experience something authentic.”
Jennings said the SCVB and its partners have been working in concert to develop virtual tours and other tools that residents and visitors can use to explore what the county has to offer.
Jennings said agriculture was one of the cornerstones of the county’s Tourism Action Plan, which was completed in 2011.
“This was a pretty natural addition to our portfolio of local trails and tours,” he said.
James Cooley, owner of Cooley Farms Inc. and Strawberry Hill U.S.A., said he is pleased with the SCVB’s new tour.
“Anything to help,” said Cooley, who was named the Swisher Sweets/Sunbelt Expo Southeastern Farmer of the Year for South Carolina in 2013. “We live in the best county, the best state, the best nation in the world. We are so blessed to be here in Spartanburg. We’re here because of the public and all of the great people who support us.”
The SCVB said print versions of the map and guide are available at the Spartanburg Area Chamber of Commerce in downtown, South Carolina Welcome Centers, and hotels and other attractions across the county.