About Us

For the last 19 years, EscapeMaker.com has promoted local agritourism destinations within a day’s drive or train ride of New York City: farms, wineries, craft beverage trails, bed and breakfasts, harvest festivals, farm-to-table events, etc. The "local" movement has now spread nationwide, thus creating a competitive marketplace for the local tourism dollar.

After working with GrowNYC - Greenmarket for 9 years on many outdoor themed events (Applepalooza, MapleFest, Berry Jamboree) in markets to encourage on-site visits to its member farms, wineries and producers, EscapeMaker designed its first Agritourism Guide for shoppers seeking apple picking, farm escapes and local craft beverage trail info. Through this process and dozens of requests, EscapeMaker discovered the urgent need for more farmer and producer education on how to use agritourism to supplement and diversify their income. This conference is our answer. Greemarket’s farmers and producers responded to a survey about a potential agritourism conference. All wanted it. None could attend. Between picking and pickling, who has the time? And thus, our VIRTUAL Agritourism Conference was born!

While many had pick-your-own operations or tasting rooms, all sought more information about hospitality, lodging, packaging, insurance, marketing and a host of other topics - so we brought in the experts! And the experts happen to be ALL WOMEN! That's no surprise considering more than half of the workforce in the hospitality industry are women.

Our mission is to not only educate farmers, producers and DMOS on the latest trends in agritourism, but also to provide practical tips and skills they can implement immediately to affect their bottom line - no matter where they are located. And since many of our expert speakers are consultants or M/WBE certified, our hope is that after the conference, there will be more opportunities for you to work together on grants and larger projects down the line. We can eliminate that gender pay gap so everybody benefits!

Let's work together to develop this industry and let's all share in the abundance! We're excited for you to join us! 

Caylin Sanders
Founder & CEO

 

Caylin Sanders - Founder & CEO

Caylin Sanders is originally from Los Angeles and graduated from Drew University in Madison, New Jersey with a major in theatre and art. Along with her late mother, Paula Sanders, she launched EscapeMaker.com in 2000 based on their mutual love of spontaneous road trips. She received a small business award from S.C.O.R.E for her contributions to the tourism industry, and also from the New York State Tourism & Hospitality Association for her work as a board member. In addition, she has spoken about best e-marketing practices, packaging and destination promotion to various tourism and lodging associations throughout the Northeast, including the American Hotel & Lodging Association. In 2010, the National Academy of Television Arts and Sciences awarded an Emmy Award to Sanders for co-producing EscapeMaker's webisode series featuring the agritourism of New York State. The series was funded by a USDA Agritourism Promotion Grant. Between 2011-2015, Sanders produced the first ever EscapeMaker Green Getaways, Local Food & Travel Expos in Brooklyn to encourage shopping locally and lowering one's carbon footprint when traveling. After getting M/WBE Certified In 2015, she received a Specialty Crop Grant from NY Ag & Markets to promote the New York Apple Association and produce another video series on apple agritourism. The expos and the grant inspired her in 2016 to open an Agritourism Pop-up Shop offering maps, guides and tours to help people plan more local farm escapes, winery weekends and craft beverage trail crawls. The shop, open 7 days a week, resides inside Fulton Stall Market at 91 South St. in the Seaport District. Sanders produces their tasting events and larger outdoor themed events throughout the year. She is also a professional songwriter with song placements on MTV and was a John Lennon Songwriting Contest finalist. Sanders loves to write, garden and play guitar.

kash2017Kash Barkeley - Agritourism Promotions Manager

Kash Barkeley joined EscapeMaker.com in the spring of 2016. In her role as Agritourism Promotions Manager, Kash is dedicated to exploring, curating and sharing ideas and inspiration about agritourism adventures within a day’s drive or train ride from NYC. Whether through event planning, website management, social media execution or content creation, Kash works to provide a wide variety of information to all of the EscapeMakers out there. Kash is a passionate and strategic communications professional. Prior to joining EscapeMaker.com, she spent 3+ years at B2B PR firm Powell Communications, where she developed and executed strategic public relations programs on behalf of marketers, advertising agencies and technology clients. Kash was born and raised in Louisville, Kentucky and graduated from Miami University of Ohio with a bachelor’s degree in communication. She loves to try out new recipes, listen to podcasts and travel locally and internationally.

Bob Lewis - Ag Projects Advisor

Bob Lewis serves as advisor and liaison on EscapeMaker agriculture-related projects. Bob was one of the original co-founders of Greenmarket in New York City 43 years ago, and remains active in the GrowNYC Greenmarket community. Bob brings expertise about the grower’s and producer’s experience and on food and beverage policy issues. Many New York State farmers, winemakers, craft brewers and distillers benefit from revenue-generating policies he instituted during his 30-year tenure at the New York State Department of Agriculture & Markets as Special Assistant to the Commissioner for Market Development. In addition to consulting for EscapeMaker, Lewis serves as an advisor to Fulton Stall Market at the South Street Seaport. Fulton Stall Market is a marketplace connecting farmers and producers with the growing community and residents of Lower Manhattan severely impacted by September 11th and still recovering from Hurricane Sandy. A year-round indoor public market featuring local products, a CSA and educational programming celebrating the Seaport’s vibrant market history are in development. In addition, Bob helps in the promotion of EscapeMaker's Agritourism Pop Up Shop and with the coordination of EscapeMaker's tasting events in conjunction with Fulton Stall Market's Sunday farmers’ market. Bob majored in geology at Antioch College in Ohio and was born and bred in Brooklyn. He sings in various community choruses and plays the cello.

CONTACT US: [email protected] or 877-99-SCRAM / 91 South St., New York, NY 10038

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