Just east of Calgary, the Wild Rose Agritourism Innovation Challenge is helping local entrepreneurs to build new, exciting opportunities surrounding the agricultural and tourism industries.  Community Futures Wild Rose, in partnership with Factor 5 Group, has been working with seven business owners to provide training and mentorship as they build their plans for their “Big Ideas” in agritourism.

The goal of this agritourism development project is to encourage and invigorate the agricultural, tourism, and culinary regional operators in the Wild Rose region to expand beyond the already successful Alberta Open Farm Days.  This region also previously piloted a Winter Edition of Open Farm Days in December 2019, where local farms and businesses worked to increase agritourism visitation in the shoulder and winter seasons.


Participating entrepreneurs are competing for $70,000 in additional support for marketing and business development.  Pitches are being evaluated on four criteria: Regional Impact, Viability, Commitment, and Investment Readiness.

Learn more about the participants and their big ideas by watching their pitch videos below:

BJ Janzen
Rosebud Country Inn

Big Idea:
Permanent local market and dark sky community

Chris Denholm
Bighorn Tours

Big Idea:
Custom packaged tours for Chinese tourists

Daniel & Linda Smith
Good Knights

Big Idea:
The Burrows – Hobbit-themed accommodation and experiences

Jennifer Franssen
Whispering Cedars Ranch

Big Idea:
Educational farm stays

Nicky Melville
Local Up Collaborative Projects

Big Idea:
Grassroots Social Network & Wild Rose Eco Trail

Rosemary Wotske
Poplar Bluff Organics

Big Idea:
Organic distillery using local produce with eatery and campground

Tammy Miller
Old MacMillers Farm

Big Idea:
Agritourism events and farm experiences centered around 90-year-old barn


Finding the right business in which to invest can be challenging, but opportunities come to home help to build your community and to strengthen the local economy.  Many of these projects are looking for local partners and/or investors to help make these ideas come to life.  You can contact them directly, or through the Agritourism Innovation Challenge contact at 587-578-8496 and info@wildroseagritourism.ca.

The Wild Rose Agritourism Innovation Challenge is made possible by the Community Futures Rural Opportunities Fund, Kneehill County, Rocky View County, Wheatland County, the Government of Canada, and the Government of Alberta.