News Organization Launches Farming Initiative in Fort Collins
The Publisher and owner of North Forty News and New SCENE Magazine has announced a formal operational partnership with Hope Farms.
Effective in March, Blaine Howerton has taken over the operation and management of HOPE Community Farm and Garden, under the operational name Colorado Encounters LLC. Howerton has also been named executive Director of the non-profit, Cultivating Hope.
“I can’t think of a more fulfilling and unique way to expand our business model,” said owner and Publisher of North Forty News, Blaine Howerton. “As Northern Colorado’s only Locally Owned regional weekly, our mission is to connect communities. HOPE Community Farm & Garden helps people heal while feeding others in need. It’s an exciting and unique way to unite organizations to work toward solving important issues while spreading the word about how our communities can work together to help address hunger in Northern Colorado,” said Blaine.
Last year, HOPE Community Farm & Garden partnered with Colorado State University, local government, and other local organizations to grow and produce food. Hundreds of pounds of produce was donated in 2022.
This year, the mission will stay the same. Non-profit partnerships are being formalized to distribute a portion of the harvest.
The community will support the farm’s mission through tax-deductible donations, donated labor, a CSA Farm share program, gift cards, and product sales. All products and produce can be purchased at the farm in Fort Collins on North Shields or through the North Forty News website at northfortynews.com/market.
How does a publisher know how to operate a farm? Blaine has a green thumb but will primarily participate in business operations and marketing while serving as the non-profit’s Executive Director.
A farm Manager has been named. TJ Ritter will tend to the crop and manage the volunteer staff. Ritter’s experience in Horticulture will ensure a successful crop with a large variety of produce, herbs, and on-site chickens.
“Working with North Forty News, Blaine, and Hope Farms has already been wonderful, and I’m excited to see our communities coming together to address hunger with this unique business model,” said TJ.”I am passionate about helping people in our communities, and I can’t wait to work with them directly.”
The unique combination of business experience with horticultural expertise gives the farm a robust business model. Stories will be publicized and shared through the local community news service, bringing awareness and revenue diversification for all organizations.
HOPE Community Farm & Garden will initially be open to the public three days a week beginning in March. As the growing season progresses, the farm hopes to expand its hours.
Farm shares, chicken eggs, and firewood are now available at the farm during business hours and can also be purchased through the online store at any time or day at northfortynews.com/market.
Farm updates will be released via email sign-up on the non-profit’s website at cultivatehopeco.org, and through regular content within North Forty News’ weekly news website and newspaper. Subscriptions are available to North Forty News at northfortynews.com/subscribe.
HOPE Community Farm & Garden
1601 N Shields St., Fort Collins, CO 80524
Wednesday, Friday, and Saturday (9 am – 1 pm)
About Cultivating Hope and North Forty News
Cultivating Hope’s mission is to positively impact our community by offering H.O.P.E.“Holistic Opportunities for Personal Enrichment” with therapeutic farm activities and programs.
As Northern Colorado’s only independently owned, regional weekly, North Forty News connects communities and the people who live in them by providing news of hyper-local events and of businesses, nonprofits, government leaders, and individuals who are working hard to make a difference while successfully meeting the challenges of our time.