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Farms and land in Patrick County lure investors, developers, businesses and homebuyers looking for low-wage skilled workforce and a diverse economy. Perched in the southern part of the state above Stokes and Surry counties in North Carolina, other surrounding counties include Carroll, Floyd, Franklin and Henry counties. Partially located in the Piedmont and Appalachian regions, Patrick County land encompasses 486 square miles and is home to 17,673 residents. In addition to manufacturing and farming, the county also is one of the most visited tourist areas in the state. Tourists, hunters and fishermen are drawn by its vast natural resources and unique attractions. Fishermen are lured to its rivers known for trout, largemouth bass and crappie. Hunters chase bears, deer and turkeys. It is the gateway to the Blue Ridge Parkway and hosts the longest-running beach music festival on the East Coast. Access by US Highway 58 provides a shipping corridor for goods produced by farms and manufacturing. The top private employers include Primland Ltd., Hanes Brands Inc., Blue Ridge SNF Operations Inc. and Roto Die Co. Farmland encompasses 91,252 acres, and livestock and poultry make up 58% of agricultural sales. Fifty-three percent of the farmland remains in woodlands, which attracts hunters or can be timbered. The Rocky Knob American Viticultral Area offers a unique method of farming. The 9,000-acre site, defined by the federal government, serves as a designated wine grape growing area. Patrick County Public Schools provides public K-12 education. Patrick Henry Community Colleges offers higher learning.