"Nature's Contributions to Our Quality of Life"

Cultivating an Agricultural Legacy

For centuries, Western Pennsylvania’s family farms have contributed to the high quality of life enjoyed by residents of this region. One such farm, a 179-acre property located on the outskirts of Ligonier Borough in Westmoreland County, is owned and operated by brothers Ray, Jack and Larry Kinsey. The property has been farmed since the early 1800s and includes one of the region’s few remaining maple sugaring operations. In addition to the maple syrup produced on the farm, the Kinseys raise sheep.

Maple syrup is produced at the farm.

To ensure that this land will be farmed for generations to come, the Western Pennsylvania Conservancy acquired an agricultural easement on the Kinsey brothers’ farm in June 2009. An agricultural easement is a voluntary agreement with the landowners that keeps the property in private hands while permanently restricting future uses of the land to agricultural activities.

“Protecting farms adjacent to towns like Ligonier helps to preserve the historic and scenic character of Western Pennsylvania,” said Mike Kuzemchak, Laurel Highlands Program Director, who worked with the Kinsey brothers to permanently conserve their land.

“Plus, with the increased interest in locally grown food, it is critical to preserve farms in the region,” Kuzemchak added.

The easement on the Kinseys’ farm protects a property with conservation significance as well as community value. The land includes approximately 2,000 feet of frontage ona tributary that drains into Upper Loyalhanna Creek — a conservation priority for WPC. In addition, over 60 percent of the farm is composed of prime agricultural soil that has statewide importance.

The Conservancy acquired the easement in collaboration with the Westmoreland County Agricultural Lands Preservation Board (WCALP), which will assume stewardship responsibilities for the easement. The Western Pennsylvania Conservancy works regularly with farmers in the Laurel Highlands to permanently conserve agricultural lands and to apply best practices that improve productivity and protect the environment. This work includes identifying funding sources for improvements. For more information, contact Mike Kuzemchak at 724-238-2492 or

The Kinsey Farm

Give your legacy roots

By including the WPC in your estate plans, such as through a bequest, a charitable gift annuity, or a gift of life insurance, you will ensure that our natural heritage is also a part of your future legacy.

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