Barry County Ag Awareness Day educates youth

The sixth annual Ag Awareness Day took place May 12 at the Barry County Fairgrounds. The event involved 577 third-grade students from five area schools and 115 teachers and chaperones along with 100 presenters and helpers.

 The program, which lines up with the Michigan Curriculum Framework standards and benchmarks, provides agricultural awareness and informs students of food and product origin. Twenty-three classes educated youth on various aspects of agriculture from animal nutrition to soil conservation to beekeeping. Presenters included 4-H members as well as professionals who taught about the subject in which they work.

 Youth attendees also enjoyed getting up close to animals in a petting zoo and riding in a horse-drawn wagon.

 Michigan State University Extension 4-H, Hastings FFA, Hastings Schools and Barry County Farm Bureau organized the event. Thanks go to Kathy Walters Surratt, MSU Extension 4-H youth educator in Barry County, who provided leadership for this program.

 Wal-Mart, GreenStone Farm Credit Services, Ponderosa Steak House in Hastings, and Karen and Larry Ferris funded the event.

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