Agritourism Summit and Pre-Summit Farm Tour set for May 7-8 in Traverse City

Register now for the inaugural Agritourism Summit and Farm Tour, featuring educational sessions and networking opportunities.

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Recognizing the importance and value of agritourism to the state of Michigan, Michigan State University Extension and its partners are excited to announce the inaugural Agritourism Summit and Pre-Summit Farm Tour on May 7-8, 2024, in Traverse City, Michigan. 

Agriculture and tourism are major industries for Michigan, generating $105 billion and $3.1 billion respectively, and blending the two provides significant economic opportunities for farmers and the municipalities. Yet, occasionally there are conflicts between local residents, governmental entities and farm-based enterprises in agricultural districts. Through education and thoughtful discussion, there is an opportunity to come together to expand rural and regional economic development opportunities.


This collaborative, two-day event aims to plant seeds for future growth, which can create a resilient, sustainable and more viable agritourism industry for generations to come. The event will feature educational sessions and networking opportunities, including the sharing of information and best practices from a variety of sectors—farmers, municipal officials, agritourism businesses and other community leaders with an interest in rural entrepreneurship and economic development—while cultivating ongoing communication for the benefit of all.

May 7 Pre-Summit Farm Tour and Welcome Soirée

The Pre-Summit Farm Tour will be held Tuesday, May 7, and includes visits to multiple agritourism operations in Grand Traverse and Leelanau counties including Jacobs Farm; Leelanau Cheese (awarded super gold at the World Cheese Awards in Spain for their raclette);  9 Bean Rows Farmstead, Café, Bakery, and CSA;  Tandem Ciders’s production facility; and ends at Farm Club for the Welcome Soirée.

The tour includes round-trip coach transportation, lunch at 9 Bean Rows, and on-site food and beverage samples. The farm club Welcome Soirée features two complimentary drink tickets, appetizers, and networking.

May 8 summit agenda

The Agritourism Summit will take place at the Hagerty Center on the shore of West Grand Traverse Bay, conveniently located two blocks from downtown Traverse City. The Summit Agenda includes:

  • Why Agritourism? Stories from Across the Region
  • Economics of Farming: A Changing Agricultural Landscape
  • The State of Agritourism in Michigan: State and Regional Trends
  • The Role of Michigan Right to Farm Act and Farm Market GAAMPS in Agritourism
  • Keynote: Collaboration and Connectivity in Agritourism
  • Municipal Examples: Planning and Zoning for Agritourism’s Elusive Form and Function
  • Navigating the Regulatory Corn Maze: Peer-to-Peer Learning and Engagement
  • Agritourism: What is Needed for Success, Removing Barriers, and Navigating the Maze
  • Resources to Support Growers

View the full schedule for May 7 and 8 with tour stops, topics and Agritourism Summit speakers.

Intended audience

The Agritourism Summit is intended for farmers, agritourism operators, elected officials, planning and zoning officials, anyone interested or working in the agrifood system or local food movement, restaurant owners, entrepreneurs and more.

The Grand Traverse region

The Agritourism Summit will take place in the cherry capital of the world — Traverse City, Michigan. In addition to fruit production, the Grand Traverse region has become known as a food, drink and nature-based recreation destination.

Stories on highlighting Traverse City’s assets:

  • The 24 best places in the world to visit in 2024 - CNN Travel
  • The most exciting foodie town in Michigan - Love Food
  • The 10 best U.S. destinations for wine tourism in 2023 - The Travel
  • 10 Best Lake Towns in the U.S. - BestLife
  • 10 cities known for food and drink in the USA - The Travel
  • Small town beer scene - USA Today, 10 Best Readers’ Choice Awards
  • Family -Friendly Road Trips for Sun or Snow - Neamb
  • The best hikes in the U.S. - Conde Nast Traveler
  • Sleeping Bear Dunes: The most beautiful place in America - Good Morning America

Register for the Agritourism Summit

Register before April 15 for early bird prices.

The May 7 Pre-Summit Farm Tour includes round-trip coach transportation from Hotel Indigo, snacks, lunch, food and beverage samples. The farm club Welcome Soirée includes two complimentary drink tickets, appetizers and networking.

May 8 Agritourism Summit includes one day of learning and networking, lunch and refreshments.

Thanks to our planning partners and sponsor

Current sponsors of the Agritourism Summit include Michigan State University (MSU) Extension, Traverse City Tourism, Northwestern Michigan College, 9/10 News, Promote Michigan, Michigan Farm Bureau, Dairy Doo, Chateau Chantal, Brys Estate, Blackstar Farms, Northern Initiatives and NAFDMA-International Agritourism Association. 

Businesses and organizations interested in partnerships and/or sponsorships can email or visit the Summit's Sponsorship page. Registration is now open at

For more information on agritourism in Michigan, please sign up for one of many informative MSU Extension e-newsletters and continue to visit MSU Extension’s Agritourism website.

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