SMITHSBURG -- Wearing an untucked shirt and sporting a two-day beard, Maryland Department of Agriculture Secretary Roger L. Richardson was hard to distinguish from the farmers who gathered to meet him Thursday at Rinehart Orchards.
It wasn't until Richardson, a farmer himself in Worcester County, Md., walked to the front of the crowd and began talking that it was obvious he was the person whom everyone had come to see.
"Thanks for coming out. I'm basically here to hear your questions," Richardson said.
Richardson visited Rinehart Orchards along with Deputy Secretary of Agriculture Earl Hance as part of the state's Capital for a Day program, in which Gov. Martin O'Malley, Lt. Gov. Anthony Brown and a dozen or so cabinet officials visited Hagerstown to meet with elected leaders and local citizens.
Several farmers asked Richardson about state funding for agricultural preservation and programs to help diversify their crops and do new things such as start wineries.