Wendell’s Agricultural Commission began in 2006 with 3 members: Linda Hickman, Bill Facey, and Annie Diemand. Over the years, other members included Sharon Gensler, Jim Dunn, Wanita Sears, Annie Diemand, Jenny Caron, Seth McDonough and Luke Doody. At present, members are Linda Hickman, Laurel Facey, Nikki Burton, and Marianne Vinal.
In February of 2007, the Agricultural Commission (AgCom) hosted an informational meeting on the National Animal Identification System (NAIS). Two years of discussions on a Right-to-Farm bylaw culminated in public hearings in 2009 and the passage of the RTF bylaw at town meeting. In 2010, a series of films related to farming were held early in the year in the Herrick Room of the Wendell Library which were well-received, and in July, a Blueberry Festival was held at the Deja Brew.
In 2011, we co-sponsored the showing of "Gasland' with the Energy Committee in the Herrick meeting room in January, and in March, Dan Conlon showed "A Day in the Life of a Honeybee Farm" and discussed beekeeping. The Massachusetts Association of Ag Commissions (MAAC) was joined and the annual Western Mass. conference in Deerfield was attended. Discussion of state regulations as they affect the Diemand Farm occurred at several meetings. Permaculture was the topic of a special presentation in 2015. Movie nights were continued from 2011 to the present.
A survey of interests was done in 2021, with Growing Fruit Trees being the most often chosen, with IPM running a close second. We hope to be able to present a program on growing fruit trees and shrubs by zoom in the spring of 2021.