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East Coast's largest sunflower festival set to return at Beaver Dam Farm in Buchanan

Mark your calendars because the dates have been announced for the 2023 Beaver Dam Farm Sunflower Festival. (Credit:{ }Beaver Dam Farm)
Mark your calendars because the dates have been announced for the 2023 Beaver Dam Farm Sunflower Festival. (Credit: Beaver Dam Farm)
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Get ready to experience the largest sunflower festival and vendor show on the East Coast! Mark your calendars because the dates have been announced for the Beaver Dam Farm Sunflower Festival, nestled in the town of Buchanan.

This event plays a crucial role in diversifying the family farm income. The farmland was acquired back in 1900 and has seen transformations from a tomato cannery in 1916 to a dairy farm in 1927. In September 2019, the dairy industry chapter came to a close, giving way to a focus on beef cattle and a hay and straw operation, all still under the stewardship of the family.

In 2015, 20 acres of black oil sunflowers were planted, creating a breathtaking landscape. The following year, the farm opened its doors to visitors, allowing them to meander through the sunflower fields, immersing themselves in the beauty. The farm says over 20,000 visitors flock to the festival each year, interacting with farm animals, enjoying hayrides and live music, and exploring a vast array of over 115 handcrafted craft and food vendors. On weekdays, it offers three field trip opportunities for preschoolers, senior citizens, and special needs kids and adults. The ever-popular catered sunset dinners in the sunflowers and the goat yoga sessions add to the allure.

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After the event concludes and the crowds recede, the farm embarks on harvesting the sunflower seeds, expertly bagging them into black oil sunflower birdseed, continuing their connection with nature.

“Candace Monaghan has done a tremendous job of bringing the Sunflower Festival from a concept just a few years ago to a nationally-recognized event that attracts over 20,000 visitors annually from approximately thirty-five states.” Ken McFadyen, the Director of Economic Development for Botetourt County, said.

The Roanoke Regional Partnership calculated the festival’s annual economic impact at $1,421,956, with $1 million as a direct economic contribution. Last year's event saw 102 vendors clocking sales of $365,500 during the 27 hours the festival was open for business.

2023 Schedule:

  • Friday, Sept. 8 – 4 p.m. – 7 p.m.
  • Saturday, Sept. 9 – 10 a.m. – 5 p.m.
  • Sunday, Sept. 10 – 10 a.m. – 5 p.m.
  • Monday, Sept. 11 – CLOSED
  • Tuesday, Sept. 12 – Preschoolers – 10 a.m. - 1 p.m.
  • Tuesday, Sept. 12 – PRIVATE – 5:30 p.m. - 7:30 p.m.
  • Wednesday, Sept. 13 – Seniors – 10 a.m. - 1 p.m.
  • Wednesday, Sept. 13 – 5:30 p.m. - 7:30 p.m.
  • Thursday, Sept. 14 – Special Needs – 10 a.m. - 1 p.m.
  • Thursday, Sept. 14 – 5:30 p.m. - 7:30 p.m.
  • Friday, Sept. 15 – CLOSED
  • Friday, Sept. 15 – PRIVATE – 5:30 p.m. - 7:30 p.m.
  • Saturday, Sept. 16 – 10 a.m. - 5 p.m.
  • Sunday, Sept. 17 – 10 a.m. - 5 p.m.

For more information, visit their website here.

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