What is Bainbridge doing?
In Ohio, “agritourism,” is any agriculturally related educational, entertainment, historical, cultural, or recreational activity on a “farm” that allows or invites members of the general public to observe, participate in, or enjoy that activity.
- Bainbridge is trying to limit the definition of agritourism to exclude ongoing educational activities conducted on a farm, and in other ways.
- Bainbridge wants to classify and regulate home-school cooperatives as schools.
- Bainbridge wants to require approvals and inspections of agricultural buildings used for agritourism in ways that are not currently required.
- In order to accomplish their objectives Bainbridge has been spending tax-payer money to conduct a multiple year’s long campaign against Kelly’s Working Well Farm, a small non-profit educational farm in the Township.
If they succeed...
- …farms in Geauga County and across Ohio could find their options for conducting agritourism limited to conventional activities such as corn mazes and “pick your own” operations and discouraged from pursuing deeper and more meaningful educational and other agritourism programming.
- …farms in Geauga County and across Ohio could find their buildings which are currently not subjected to or even eligible to participate in the legal permitting and inspection process subjected to arbitrary, ad hoc and costly approvals and inspection processes.
- …homeschool cooperatives in Geauga county and across Ohio could find themselves subjected to much greater regulation limiting their options for conducting their programs in alternative locations such as farms.
If you care about...
- …local food production and the viability of small farms across the state of Ohio…
- …giving small farms the freedom and opportunity to develop alternative operational models that will contribute to the future resilience of their communities…
- …the ability for families to provide alternative educational options for their kids…
- …providing safe, healthy outdoor opportunities for kids to play and learn throughout the year…
…then please support us by conveying your opinion to Bainbridge and Geauga county authorities in as many ways as possible!
You can help!
Our goal is to enlist members of the Bainbridge, Chagrin Falls, and wider community to put pressure on Bainbridge Township authorities and the Geauga County Prosecutor’s Office to stop their crusade against Kelly’s Working Well Farm and its activities. These are the entities to contact with written letters and emails and phone calls:
- Bainbridge Township Trustees, Michael Bates, Jeffrey Markley, and Kristina O’Brien, https://bainbridgetwp.com/government/officials/
- Bainbridge Zoning Department and Zoning Inspector Karen Endres, firstname.lastname@example.org, (440) 543-9871
- Bainbridge Fire Department Fire Chief (440) 543-8373 and Fire Inspector William Lovell, email@example.com
- Geauga County Prosecutor’s Office 440-279-2100, and Assistant Prosecutor Linda Applebaum
- Bainbridge Town Hall address and phone number: 17826 Chillicothe Road, Chagrin Falls, Ohio 44023, (440) 543-9871
- Bainbridge Zoning and Fire Departments and the Assistant County prosecutor must stop harassing Kelly’s Working Well Farm and their associates
- Bainbridge must stop opposing KWWF agritourism programming immediately – let families choose the farm for their kids!
- The Bainbridge Fire Inspector must be given the power to resolve the citations he issued without requiring KWWF to pay for a third party inspector