Ski Vermont Donates Record Breaking Grant to Preserve Working Landscape of Vermont
On May 16, 2017 Ski Vermont donated a record-breaking $19,980.00 to Larson Farm and Creamery in Wells, VT. The donation comes from the proceeds of the 2016-17 seasonal Fifth Grade Passport sales which helped over 3,100 children to ski and snowboard in Vermont for free this winter.
The Ski Vermont grant, which is part of the Working Lands Enterprise Initiative, will help the Larson family develop marketing, packaging and cover initial startup costs for their new line of dairy products. New products will include cream-line milk, yogurt, skyr, gelato and butter. The WLE Initiative works to protect and progress the working landscape of Vermont by investing in agricultural and forestry based businesses.
“Ski Vermont has been donating Fifth Grade Passport proceeds to the agricultural and environmental communities of Vermont for seven years now, and this year is no different. The Larson family and their farm represent what it means to be Vermonters, putting their heart and soul into bettering their community and providing local, healthy and organic food options,” said Chloe Elliott, Ski Vermont Communications Manager. “We at Ski Vermont are proud of our passport program and the benefits of enabling children to partake in sports like skiing and snowboarding at a young age. Passport holders are given the opportunity to connect with Vermont’s landscape and possibly discover a lifelong passion while creating healthy lifestyle habits, like engaging in physical activity and eating locally sourced, healthy foods.”
“It is so important to us to have Ski Vermont’s continued support of the agricultural and tourism industries here in Vermont,” said Chelsea Bardot Lewis, Business Development Section Chief with the Vermont Agency of Agriculture. “Both the Working Lands Enterprise Initiative and Ski Vermont have a mission of protecting the landscape of the Green Mountains while also growing a sustainable economy. To achieve this we must support local businesses and invite Vermonters and visitors to experience all that our state has to offer, from skiing and snowboarding, to local foods like Larson’s dairy products.”
Next season, 2017-18, will mark the eighteenth year of enriching families’ winters with the Fifth Grade Passport program. Each year the program grows exponentially and as of the final seventeenth year, the program has enabled over 23,100 children to partake in skiing and snowboarding at Vermont’s resorts. Next season’s passports will go on sale in early fall of 2017 for $10 and can be purchased at skivermont.com/FGP.
Working Lands Enterprise Initiative
In 2012, the Vermont Working Lands Enterprise Initiative (WLEI) was signed into law. The Initiative supports, grows, and sustains Vermont’s entrepreneurs by providing technical and financial assistance to help Working Lands businesses innovate and grow. The grant money and loan programs directly impact businesses and service providers by helping to create jobs, build infrastructure, provide technical aid, and promote growth. The program also protects Vermont’s greatest natural resource: its land.
Larson Farm and Creamery
Founded by Richard and Cynthia Larson in 1977, the Larson family is proud to offer fresh, healthy food to their community in Wells, VT and beyond. With a herd of 33 Jersey cows, the Larson’s product line includes fresh milk, beef, eggs and as the result of the 2017 Ski Vermont grant, will expand to offering cream-line milk, yogurt, skyr, gelato and butter.