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Annual Farm Aid 2013 Features Concert, Film and Farm Tours to Support American Farmers

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By now, most Americans have heard of Farm Aid. Musicians Willie Nelson, Neil Young, and John Mellencamp organized the first Farm Aid concert in 1985 to raise awareness about the loss of family farms and to raise funds to keep farm families on their land. In the ensuing years, according to Farm Aid’s website, the annual concerts have raised $43 million “to promote a strong and resilient family farm system of agriculture.”

 

“We all see what's happening with agriculture, what's happening to our small towns. They are going out of business. That's a direct result of the farm problem. We're still doing Farm Aid because it is contributing. It's doing a job,” said Mellencamp on the eve of this year’s Farm Aid concert and accompanying events.

 

This year’s Farm Aid concert will take place in Saratoga Springs, NY on September 21. Tickets are already sold out, but organizers will make the event available on YouTube. Additional activities will include a meet and greet for farmers, farm service providers and farm advocates; an advance film screening of “Growing Cities,” a documentary about urban gardening; and tours of local New York farms.

 

With its Farmer Resource Network, Farm Aid staff refers farmers to a network of more than 500 family farm organizations across the country. The referrals, says Farm Aid, “support farmers seeking to make transitions to more sustainable and profitable farming practices, and also provide immediate and effective support services to farm families in crisis.”

 

To take action to help American farmers, follow this link.

 

Here's a preview of this year's performers: