Busch family in court over future of Grant’s Farm - KMOV.com

Busch family in court over future of Grant’s Farm

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SOUTH ST. LOUIS COUNTY (KMOV.com) -

The legal battle over the future of Grant’s Farm continued Tuesday with lawyers haggling over details of the Busch family trust among other details. 

It’s all to determine who has the right to the longtime family farm – Billy Busch or his four siblings opposing him, Andrew Busch, Peter Busch, Trudy Busch Valentine and Beatrice Busch von Gontard.

Billy Busch recently presented an offer to buy the farm and the family mansion for a single dollar more than his siblings.  This came after that group of four tried to sell the farm to the St. Louis Zoo, a deal that has since fallen through.

Billy Busch says he has a 10-year business plan to buy and operate the farm.  His siblings say he does not have the resources to sustain it.

“I think there’s a lot of questions with that – an upstart company, someone that hasn’t run a park like that.  It’s a big game.  We have a very proven plan that’s been in place for 60 some odd years,” Andrew Busch said with his siblings by his side.

Billy Busch says, however, he doesn’t believe his four siblings will ultimately keep the farm in the family if they win.

“I think ultimately they would want to turn around and sell it, possibly to the zoo or some other entity.  Again, three of the four don’t even live in St. Louis and they’ve been sellers all along.  Ironically, now they’ve turned into buyers.  I think ultimately they’d want to sell it,” Billy Busch said.

The group of four opposing Billy Busch released a statement in addition to their public comments on Tuesday:

This is the statement by Trudy Busch Valentine, Beatrice Busch von Gontard, Peter Busch and Andrew Busch:

“The independent trustee (Wells Fargo) and the probate court will be making decisions soon about the future of Grant’s Farm. We believe the choice is clear.

We four Busch siblings have offered to buy Grant’s Farm to make sure it continues to give the community the same outstanding visitor experience people have enjoyed for the last 62 years. Our plan will ensure that the Grant’s Farm experience people love so much will continue as it has, without converting it to a more commercial attraction as our brother has proposed.

Continued operation by Anheuser-Busch, which has created the great Grant’s Farm visitor experience, is the best way to make sure that Grant’s Farm will be a great St. Louis attraction long into the future.

The risks and uncertainties of Billy’s plans – which depend on support from his small brewery, major corporate sponsorships, large new facilities, and numerous private events – are a gamble for Grant’s Farm and the St. Louis community.

We are committed to fulfill our father Gussie Busch’s wishes that Grant’s Farm continue to operate in the same way it did during his lifetime, with family ownership, to be available to the public for free for generations to come.”

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