When you think about healthy local food options and the wonderful specialty foods in our region, who comes to mind? If you are like most people in our region, you think of an ACEnet client or maybe the ACEnet Food Ventures Center out on Columbus Road. Why? Because we have been supporting area food businesses, restaurants, and farmers for over 30 years. When you think about the variety of small, women-owned businesses in our area who comes to mind? If you are like many of your neighbors, you may have used the services of one of the 25 women-owned or operated businesses operating in the ACEnet Business Incubator.

Exciting New ACEnet EndeavorsYour support of locally owned businesses and farmers is what helps drive our local economy and provides the opportunities for many entrepreneurs to succeed. We at ACEnet plan to be here, helping existing and new businesses and farmers find their way but we need your support to continue this very important work. In 2017, we embark on two new projects that will strengthen the farming and women-owned businesses throughout Southeast Ohio: The Food Production Center in Nelsonville and the 2017 Women in Business Conference.

ACEnet is ready to invest in new food production space within the Nelsonville facility that will enable local farmers to create value-added meat products in a licensed meat processing facility, the only such facility in Southeast Ohio. The new Food Production Center will also provide an opportunity to advance local Farm-to-School and Farm-to-Institution programs that will support area farmers and bring healthy, local meal options to our children and others. We have hired a local architect and have obtained some grant funding but we still need your help in making this investment work for our farmers.

We are also excited to announce our upcoming Women Exciting New ACEnet Endeavorsin Business Conference on May 5th, 2017 at the newly renovated Lodge at Hocking College in Nelsonville. Through your support, the conference will unite women entrepreneurs in all stages of business development for a one day conference that will focus on three main objectives: professional development, personal development, and networking with other women who own and operate small businesses.

If you’d like, you can specify your gift to either of these exciting new projects and you can be certain that your gift will directly impact our local economy for many years to come. Please send your gift today, knowing that your donation is helping to make our community stronger by growing our regional economy. Right here. Right now.

If you would like to help, you can go to our Funding Opportunities page under Support Us, or you can print the card below and send it to ACEnet at:

94 Columbus Road
Athens, OH 45701

Thank you so much for your help.

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Community Update by ACEnet Programs & Communications Coordinator, Meggan Loveland