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Maverick Farms and DOT threats : update 2/26/2013

Dear friends of Maverick Farms,

On Monday afternoon, we had our first face to-face meeting with with the NC Dept of Transportation (DOT). Two officials, Mike Pettyjohn (North Wilkesboro) and Ivan Dishman (Boone) visited the farm. Maverick Farms executive director Hillary Wilson, her partner, farmer Worth Kimmel, and, co-landowner Bill Wilson, attended the meeting, along with Chapel Hill environmental attorney John Runkle.

The meeting was neither good nor bad. On the plus side, the DOT announced it will not actually be making a take-it-or-leave offer next week, as they told us three weeks ago. Instead, they said they will "look into alternatives" and get back to us “soon.” The engineers made clear that this decision to delay the proceedings was a result of public pressure brought to bear by our supporters. This is a clear victory—THANKS TO YOU, our supporters!

But the engineers added that the bridges on the road that run through our farm are "functionally obsolete and structurally deficient" simply because they are one-lane bridges. We dispute this assessment--the bridges can handle a reasonable amount of traffic as long as they are properly maintained. Worse still, they claimed the DOT no longer builds one-way bridges. The implication: the bridges must not only be replaced—meaning that a new road must be routed through our fields, since the road dead-ends—and must also be expanded dramatically, and tricked out with large culverts.

In short, DOT wants to spend $820,000 to destroy the farm. The only hope we have is to continue the pressure on these people until they find some alternatives.

About Maverick Farms: Maverick Farms is a 501(c)3 educational

non-profit dedicated to promoting family farming as a community

resource and expanding access to healthy food by reconnecting local

food networks in the High Country of North Carolina. In 2009, Maverick

Farms launched High Country CSA (HCCSA), a multi-farm project that

links area farmers and consumers. HCCSA is committed to being

accessible to low-income community members—it accepts EBT benefits as

payment and works with the Appalachian District Health Department, the

Children’s Coalition, and the Community Care Clinic to make subsidized

shares availble to low-income families. In 2012, HCCSA had 100

members. In 2012, Maverick launched the Farmer Incubator and Grower

program in conjunction with Appalachian State Community's Sustainable

Development Department. In addition, Maverick grows vegetables and

eggs for sale at the Watauga County Farmers Market. Learn more at or


Ivan Dishman - division of highways

PO Box 1460

Boone, NC 28607

Mike Pettyjohn

PO Box 250

North Wilkesboro, NC 28659

James Palermo  District 11 DOT

C/O Division 11 DOT

Box 250

North Wilkesboro, NC 28659

 Anthony Tata, NC Secretary of Transportation


RALEIGH NC 27699-1501



Nathan Miller, Chairman Watauga County Board of Commissioners

814 West King Street, Suite 205

Boone, North Carolina 28607

Maverick Farms 2014: 10 years and new focus

This year marks the 10-year anniversary of Maverick Farms. We are so proud for all the programs and work we've accomplished over the last ten years!


This year the focus on the FIG project and beginning farmers in the high country. This year there are 5 beginning, landless farmers at FIG and the land at Maverick is under culitivation with Waxwing farm.


Be sure to check out the FIG website and facebook for more information about what's happening or find the beginning farmers at the Watauga County Farmers Market.