Barbara Larson and Tom Finkbiner founded Stagebridge Farm in 2018.  The land was formerly owned by the Bridgewater family who maintained sheep and cattle and grew orchards on the property. The land was mostly virgin forest until the early twentieth century when it was heavily logged. The Bridgewater’s farm was established immediately after.

After acquiring the land, Barbara and Tom began working with Sam Cleveland, Architect (Charlottesville, VA) and Windjammer Construction in Nelson County, to construct their home.  Built near the highest point on the property, the house affords panoramic views of the stream valley and surrounding Blue Ridge Mountains. The garage was constructed as a separate building and includes an Airbnb.  It is the modern day equivalent of a “Carriage House” and has been almost continuously occupied since it opened in March of 2020.

Both Barbara and Tom have rural heritage. Barbara’s family migrated to America in the late nineteenth century from Scandinavia and still operate a large wheat and soybean farm near Fargo, North Dakota. Tom’s family is Pennsylvania Dutch in heritage and operated farms in Central and southeastern Pennsylvania. Both have strong feelings about the productive use of the land in an environmentally friendly fashion with the goal of continuously improving the property, being good stewards of the land and good neighbors to the community.

The growing Virginia wine and cider industries and the farm’s ideal topography for growing grapes and apples has inspired Barbara and Tom to devote much of the property to the cultivation of grapes and cider apples to help support those Virginia businesses.

In line with their mission of being good stewards and good neighbors, six varieties of sweet corn will be planted this year and three varieties of strawberries.; all for public consumption.