HAGERSTOWN, Md. (AP) — The National Park Service is seeking applicants for the agricultural use of land in the Chesapeake and Ohio Canal National Historical Park.

The agency said Monday it’s offering long-term lease agreements on 25 properties in Allegany, Frederick, Montgomery and Washington counties. The leases will be for up to 10 years, starting in April.

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The bid deadline is Jan. 4.

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The park service says preference will be given to farmers who can demonstrate knowledge and experience in sustainable agriculture and conservation practices.

The agency says it has already determined fair market rental rates for each property. But the park service says it may consider a lower rate in return for improvements to the property.

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