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Posted May 13, 2009 | Copyright © The Northern Virginia Daily
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Long Branch to host picnic, fishing derby

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By Alex Bridges -- abridges@nvdaily.com

MILLWOOD -- Long Branch Historic House and Farm plans to promote the environment Saturday with a family picnic and the annual Farland Fishing Derby.

"Long Branch is now dedicated to education, environmental preservation and then those topics that are synonymous ... like horticulture ... architecture," said Executive Director Mary Rodriguez. "This weekend is completely dedicated to the environment."

Long Branch will stock its pond with trout on Friday in time for the fishing derby.

Participants of the event have included Blue Ridge Wildlife Center, Clarke County Parks and Recreation, Ecycle, Frederick County Junior Bass Wranglers, the Friends of the Shenandoah River Downstream Project, Lord Fairfax Soil and Water Conservation District, Secure Shred and Sportsplex, according to a press release.

Also, Long Branch will be awarding prizes to young artists in Clarke County schools who submitted pieces for a drawing contest organized by Director of Events Jennifer Seo.

Other activities on Saturday include face painting, a moon bounce, a petting zoo, hayrides, casting demonstrations, showcasing the Downstream Project DVD, solar oven activity made from pizza boxes and concessions from Mr. B's BBQ and Middleburg Creamery.

Entry to Long Branch is free. People may bring their own picnic or buy food from vendors. Some activities require a nominal fee to participate. Trout fishing is $10 per fisherman (children 5 and under free), and there's a limit of five trout per person. A fishing pole is required, but a rod is not.

Tours of the Historic House are available for $5 per person (children 16 and under free). There is also a Long Branch Trail Ride from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. at $15 per horseback rider.

Richard Farland, president of Farland Capital and treasurer of the Long Branch board of directors, and George Ohrstrom II are financial sponsors of the event.

Contact Romy Walker at 837-1420 or foxmeadowfarm@verizon.net to RSVP. Contact Seo at 837-1856 for more information.

Then, on Monday, Long Branch will host "Farm to Fork: Discovering the Pleasure of Eating Locally Year-round" from 3 to 6 p.m. The symposium will feature a panel of four Virginia pioneers in sustainable agriculture and Washington Post food journalist David Hagedorn, according to a press release. Juliet Mackay-Smith, owner of Locke Store, will moderate a discussion focusing on the environmental, community and individual benefits of growing, cooking and eating local food.

After the discussion, local producers will host a tasting reception featuring a variety of meats, cheeses, produce and wines. Those attending the symposium will receive a guide to local growers and businesses involved with sustainable agricultural practices. There will be no solicitation at this educational event.

Tickets for the symposium are $45 and include the panel discussion and the food and wine reception. Call Rodriguez at Long Branch at 837-1848 for more information.

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