In partnership with Travel Oregon’s Food Trails program, the High Desert Food & Farm Alliance has launched an exciting new program for Central Oregon foodies called the High Desert Food Trail, Central Oregon’s first official food trail. The High Desert Food Trail is one of only eight other Travel Oregon designated Oregon Food Trails offered throughout the state, and is the second to be located east of the Cascade Mountains.
The High Desert Food Trail guide features a year-round, self-guided food and agriculture-focused adventure of your own design that you can explore at your own pace. Participants are welcome to start and finish wherever they please. Food adventurists will have the opportunity to enjoy 45+ local businesses along the trail, each offering unique and exceptional food-oriented and eating experiences! This unique food adventure planning guide will give both Central Oregonians and visitors alike a new way to discover what local food tastes like, and to appreciate where it comes from.
The High Desert Food Trail guide will also be available online and will make planning your next local cuisine cruise a breeze. The full-color printed brochure will be available for pick-up starting the week of October 18th at any of the featured trail businesses, 60 different hotels across Central Oregon, any of the Travel Oregon Visitor Centers, and Redmond Municipal Airport. The High Desert Food Trail is a great way to enjoy unique local food-oriented experiences of a wide variety.
The digital version of the planning guide will be available online at hdffa.org, getataste.org and via the Travel Oregon website. So check back later in October to get a peek of the High Desert Food Trail offerings at these locations, so you can start planning your first food trail adventure.
With more than 45 different stops at local food-oriented businesses throughout Crook, Deschutes, and Jefferson Counties, the High Desert Food Trail features three unique self-guided itineraries that showcase various ways to enjoy the stunning landscapes, artisan offerings, and resilient agriculture. While the High Desert Food Trail features local agriculture such as farms and ranches, craft beverage producers, cooking schools, vineyards, artisan markets, and even lodging properties are included in the program.
“Experiences such as the High Desert Food Trail foster a deeper connection and a greater sense of place for both visitors and locals. These experiences are so rewarding but can be difficult to discover without an organized effort or a formal program in place,” says Annie Nichols, Lead Organizer for the High Desert Food Trail. “With such strong agricultural roots in the region, combined with an incredible culinary scene and a culture of artisans and makers, we hope to make access to and enjoyment of high-quality, locally-sourced food experiences that much easier.”
According to Travel Oregon, the Oregon Food Trails program aims to cultivate innovative partnerships between culinary and agricultural businesses, strengthen local food economies, and create unique experiences for visitors and locals alike. The objectives of the program are to:
- Drive visitation to agricultural and culinary businesses in destinations that offer high-quality and locally-sourced consumable products in a compelling way
- Deliver excellent visitor experiences by increasing business engagement and collaboration
- Inspire visitors to explore businesses that they might not find on their own
- Encourage visitors to stay in destinations longer, visit in shoulder seasons, and consider repeat visitation
“While some activities might be limited by an individual’s specific interests, such as mountain biking or skiing, or confined to certain seasons of the year, food is the one component that’s part of every Central Oregon visitor’s experience year-round, and regardless of their interests,” said Julie Theisen, CEO of Visit Central Oregon. “The High Desert Food Trail allows us to tell the story of food and its interconnectedness to the visitor experience, and to showcase the quality, diversity, and creativity of the region’s agritourism in new and different ways.”
To learn more about the High Desert Food Trail, visit High Desert Food Trail. To explore all that the region has to offer – including food – or to begin planning a visit to Central Oregon, visit www.visitcentraloregon.com.