Posts Tagged: outreach
Nearly 2,000 third-graders visited the Fresno County fairgrounds March 23 to learn about the connection between the food they eat and their home county's No. 1 economic driver, agriculture.
Farm and Nutrition Day is sponsored by the Fresno County Farm Bureau and the Fresno Fair. UC Cooperative Extension in Fresno County has been involved since the event's inception in 2005; this was the first year for the UC Kearney Agricultural Research and Extension Center to bring an educational booth to the event.
KARE program and facility coordinator Laura Van Der Staay and her assistant Julie Sievert secured donations of lettuce seedlings, potting soil and pots to give to the children who visited the booth. In addition, Van Der Staay and Sievert used a felt board to teach the children about the benefits of eating right and exercise.
The first stop on country music artist Michael Peterson's whirlwind tour of San Joaquin Valley agriculture today was the Kearney Agricultural Research and Extension Center, where he enjoyed fresh fruit produced by local farmers and was introduced to the science behind the California agricultural industry's tremendous success.
Peterson was a member of 4-H as a youth in eastern Washington. That early exposure to agriculture, he said, may have planted the seed that developed into his current affinity for the farming industry.
Peterson brings a measure of celebrity to the effort to share the message about California agriculture. His country music debut album in 1997 produced four hit singles, “Drink, Swear, Steal and Lie," "From Here to Eternity," “Too Good To Be True” and “When the Bartender Cries.” He was named Top New Artist of 1997 by Billboard and Radio & Records and honored as Country Weekly's Male Newcomer and Gavin's Artist to Watch in 1998.
More recently, Peterson has been active in youth development and veterans' programs. He presents a school assembly called "Tag, You're It," which blends illusions, humor, interactive multi-media, audience participation and the power of the internet to help improve test scores and boost high school graduation rates. He has also traveled to Iraq several times to perform for the troops and is creating a music project for the Military Child Education Coalition.
Peterson said he was impressed by his visit to the Kearney Agricultural Research and Extension Center.
"I never thought about the science part, on this level, being so important in agriculture," he said. "Thank goodness y'all are here."
In the video above, Michael Peterson expresses esteem for California agricultural science. For a transcript of the video, please email firstname.lastname@example.org.
A group of eighth-graders from Riverview Elementary School in Reedley toured the UC Kearney Agricultural Research and Extension Center today for an introduction to agricultural science.
In Kearney's greenhouse facility, UC staff showed the students some of the pests farmers must manage - including leaf footed bug, navel orange worm and olive fruit fly - and explained research underway to help farmers control pests in ways that are effective and environmentally sound.