RENO, NV - Welcome to Wendy Baroli's world.
She works a small farm just inside the Nevada border and loves it.
“More than anything in the world what I wanted to do was to learn to feed people,” says Baroli
A native Nevadan she worked for a California representative for awhile, but later discovered raising turkeys, chickens, cows, sheep, and pigs was more her style.
You could say it’s in the blood, she comes from a long line of farmers, her great grandfather came to Reno from Italy to work this difficult land.
“Most people say we can't grow things here. It’s not true. It’s harder, it’s certainly harder,” says Baroli.
Baroli sells the meat and wool to locals in Northern Nevada interested in buying local for their restaurants and businesses.
She's passionate about farming which is why the thought of selling off pieces of the University's main station agricultural lab upsets her.
“I know a whole host of students who are FFA students and they want a place to go to school and they can't get that education in their own state. So for me, this is standing up for those kids of the future. But the other thing is our local food community,” says Baroli.
She believes that re-zoning of the university farm will be the demise of the entire farm as once office buildings go up on only 10% of the land, they won't want animals, their waste, and even their processing close to business.
The sad part is she says if you look at Nevada as a whole, it’s those animals and the farms they live on that have remained as Nevada has gone bust.
“Yes, it hangs on by its own teeth, but what is left in Elko, what is left in Winnemucca, what is left in Lovelock, what is left in Ely, what is left across this state are agriculture communities when the boom-bust days go that's the thing that is left across this state,” says Baroli.
Baroli is working with campaign on Change.org and has collected more than 10,000 signatures, mostly local who are opposed to the re-zoning of the University’s Agriculture Lab Farm.
She says she will present those signatures to the council on the 14th of December.