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Solebury Supervisors approve Roots to River’s plans for Community Supported Agriculture


It was a long time coming, but the Solebury Supervisors on Tuesday unanimously granted final approval – with conditions – to the Roots to River Farm’s plan to create a Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) operation on Sugan Road.

Farm owners Malaika Spencer and her husband, Ian Knauer, grow crops on 13 acres on Natalie Hamill and Josh Perlsweig’s 62-acre (Lot A) preserved farmland (under a Conservation Easement) in the Agricultural-Residential (A-R) zone at 3211 Sugan Road.

People who sign up for the CSA operation would periodically get vegetables grown there.

Knauer’s plan is to use Perlsweig’s adjacent unpreserved 1.5-acre tract (Lot B) at 3175 Sugan Road to sell fennel wine, hold twice-a-week cooking classes, and twice-a-month dinners. A now-vacant house on the tract would be used as a kitchen.

The Roots to River plans went before the Solebury Zoning Hearing Board in early 2022 and this year Solebury Planning Commission recommend that the supervisors approve consolidation of the two lots (A&B) and approval of the land development plan.

Several residents attended Tuesday’s meeting and offered opinions on the ventures.

Many farmers spoke in favor of the project, including Gary Manoff who farms 35 acres off Comfort Road, who was “delighted” with the project. “We’re lucky to have these young farmers...We need more of them...They need support,” he said.

Speaking against the plan was Mark Schmukler of 3168 Sugan Road, directly across the street from the project. He cited traffic problems that already exist on Sugan Road.

In other matters, Chair Mark Baum Baicker congratulated Township Manager Chris Garges on completing his 18th Boston Marathon on Monday, including his 14th in a row.

“I don’t fully understand how – or if I’m being honest, why – people willingly run more than 26 miles with nobody or nothing chasing them.

“But it’s a great accomplishment and I admire Chris for all the preparation, dedication, and persistence an accomplishment like that involves,” he said.

The board noted that this year’s road paving projects will include Peddlers View, the Red Fox development and Cornwell Drive. Oil and chip work will be done on Cuttalossa Road (the improved section).

Baum Baicker promoted two upcoming Solebury events, both planned for Saturday, May 13.

The first is the 11th Annual Robert Nagg Memorial Soccer Game and Fundraiser from 3 to 5:15 p.m., rain or shine, at the New Hope-Solebury High School Stadium field. Solebury’s Parks & Recreation Department was the original sponsor of the event which started in 2013, and has continued as an event sponsor each year since, he said.

The game will be held in collaboration with St. Baldrick’s Day Community Fair for pediatric cancer research being held at the New Hope-Solebury Upper Elementary School from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.

“The memorial game,” he said, “is held in honor of Robert Nagg, who was a student at New Hope-Solebury and a member of the Boys Soccer team. After a courageous battle with brain cancer, Robert passed away in 2013 at the age of 17...This year’s event will again feature two games: Girls at 3:30 p.m. and Boys at 4:30 p.m.”

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