Access to affordable tillable farmland and pasture is one of the primary barriers for next-generation farmers and a healthy evolution of the agricultural economy in the Virginia Piedmont. Many next-generation farmers from non-farming backgrounds have contacted PEC seeking access to available farmland. Conversely, many non-farming landowners are interested in agricultural land use, but the process of leasing land for this purpose can be daunting.
We all love the Piedmont region. For many of us, that emotional connection stems from specific places. Our home. Our land. Our yard. Our familiar routes along byways and trails. A particular view, or a special stretch of stream. That strong, direct connection has motivated thousands of families to volunteer to conserve their land.
We are delighted to share some wonderful news with you. In September, the PEC board passed a resolution to improve our headquarters—and now construction is under way! Work kicked off on November 10, 2014 on the expansion of our 45 Horner Street office. This addition will allow all of our Warrenton staff to be under the same roof for the first time in more than five years.
Since 2009, PEC has offered the Exploring the Small Farm Dream course to aspiring farmers—helping them take a long hard look at their dreams and to answer the question, “Is starting a farm business a good fit for me?” As the title of the course suggests, every participant comes to the course with their own unique dream—an idea that they want to explore. It is these dreams that form the starting point of the course, which evaluates student’s goals, skills, interests, physical and financial resources, and the merits of their ideas in order to settle on a course of action.
The National Fish and Wildlife Foundation awarded PEC a $200,000 grant from the Chesapeake Bay Stewardship Fund this past October. With this grant, PEC will collaborate with Loudoun County, the Town of Lovettsville, Loudoun County Master Gardeners and Loudoun homeowners associations to implement projects that involve planting native trees and shrubs, improving stormwater facilities and reducing polluted runoff in Loudoun County communities.
PEC teamed up with Mill Run Elementary School to create a naturally landscaped outdoor area for educating students, parents and the community. This past November, the school’s fourth and fifth grades participated in the project by planting 75 native trees and 135 native plants!
A partnership between PEC and The Boys & Girls Clubs of Central Virginia has created new opportunities for Orange County youth to experience the natural environment and history of the surrounding region.
From December 6 -- through December 23, 2014, The Outpost will have a backroom of unique finds that are marked half off, and 100% of the proceeds from this room will be donated to The Piedmont Environmental Council! Read More
It’s been twenty years since Disney proposed a historic theme park at the foothills of the Bull Run Mountains near Thoroughfare Gap. The Piedmont Environmental Council, led by Amb. Charlie Whitehouse, was a small organization at the time, but stepped up and helped spearhead a David vs. Goliath campaign that drew intense national attention. On October 12th, join us at Historic Galemont Farm in The Plains, as we reflect on what’s happened in the years since Disney, present workshops that fit today, hear from Keynote Speaker Hedrick Smith and discuss what the next twenty years will hold. This text was taken from an email alert sent out on October 2nd, 2013. Read More
It might be hard to believe with daffodils and pansies struggling to stand tall in the snow just last week, but we have it on good authority that spring really will be with us soon. Plan now to enjoy two great natural spectacles -- brilliant bluebells and amazing azaleas. Shake off the winter doldrums and celebrate the return of spring in the Piedmont. This text is from an email alert that was sent out on March 2nd, 2013. Read More
A traveling exhibition featuring the work of 11 leading artists living and working in the Virginia Piedmont region.The Piedmont Environmental Council is proud to bring together eleven of the leading artists working in the Virginia Piedmont region. The thirty works of art chosen for exhibition will highlight a cross section of artists who by their creativity and ability make us all aware of the abundant resources of the region. These artists work in various mediums and approach their art in different ways, but all share a sense of place that is the Virginia Piedmont. All of the artwork is for sale and proceeds will benefit the 40th Anniversary Fund of PEC—making possible new outreach initiatives. Read More
As we celebrate our 40th Anniversary, The Piedmont Environmental Council is excited to bring Richard Louv, best-selling author of Last Child in the Woods and The Nature Principle, to the Piedmont —sparking ideas to help people and nature reconnect. See Richard Louv in Leesburg on Mar 14 See Richard Louv in Charlottesville on Mar 15 Tickets are $12 per adult and $8 per student and can be purchased online. Read More
Every locality in Virginia must express its goals in a Comprehensive Plan, a twenty-year vision which must be reviewed and/or revised every five years. These documents are of foundational importance for communities that wish to shape their own future. Read More