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Beyond the 5K for Farmland

runners with land conserved sign

On a chilly Sunday last October, hundreds of runners, walkers, families, and farmers came out for the 10th Annual 5K for Farmland & Farmers’ Market Festival on the Hadley Town Common. After 10 years, 2018 was the last 5K for Farmland at this site.

10 years of 5K for FarmlandThe first event in 2009 was created to highlight the importance of saving local farmland during Hadley’s 350th anniversary. The 5K for Farmland took place in the heart of Hadley’s farm country with a scenic running route through historic farmland known as the Great Meadow and the Honey Pot. Participants also enjoyed the Farmers’ Market Festival afterwards with live music, local food and crafts, and local beer, which became a signature post-race treat.

Throughout the past decade, nearly 4,000 participants and 70 businesses helped raise more than $150,000 to support Kestrel’s work to save local farmland, forests, and recreation lands across the Pioneer Valley. During that time, Kestrel conserved nearly 10,000 acres of farmland and forests with its municipal, state, and federal agency partners. We are grateful to everyone who joined us for the 5K for Farmland over the past 10 years—we couldn’t have done it without you!

And, while there is no 5K for Farmland this year, the land still needs your support! Join us now, in honor of this milestone and help save the farms and forests you love in the Valley.

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We are excited to celebrate Kestrel’s 50th Anniversary in 2020 and we want you to be a part of it. Stay tuned for what’s coming next!


Still Looking for a Community Run/Walk This Fall? 

If you’re missing the 5K for Farmland this year, we encourage you to check out these community events:

  • Fall Foliage & Cider Run on Saturday, October 19:  Event supports “A Better Chance” in Amherst, a residential high school program that prepares academically talented young men of color from educationally underserved school districts for college and future leadership roles. The walk/run takes place along and through conservation areas Kestrel has helped create over the decades. Starting at Amherst Town Common, the route partly circles Amherst College campus and enters the woodlands of The Amherst College bird sanctuary, highlighted by a beautiful view over the Pelham Hills. Finally, it follows the Norwottuck Rail Trail back to the campus. Participants enjoy a cup of cider, healthy snacks, entertainment and fun activities after the run.
  • Eagle Eye Hike-a-Thon on Saturday, October 26: Event supports our youth education partner, Eagle Eye Institute during their hiking event at Mount Tom Reservation in Holyoke, from 10 am to 2 pm. Eagle Eye engages urban youth in hands-on outdoor programs that introduce them to the beauty of nature, offer opportunities to build skills, and inspire them to develop a relationship with nature, others, and themselves. Kestrel is partnering with Eagle Eye to help urban youth from Holyoke experience nature and build confidence in themselves. The Hike-a-thon is Eagle Eye’s biggest fundraiser of the year. Enjoy a fall hike led by DCR Park Interpreter Jim Terruso and help Eagle Eye raise money to engage more urban youth in nature, and continue to partner with Kestrel Land Trust. Picnic lunch and Eagle Eye t-shirt are included in the registration.
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