Hard at work

Published 12:00 am Friday, September 25, 2009

The Farm City Committee of the Pike County Chamber of Commerce is busy preparing for its busy fall schedule that includes hosting the annual Farm City Banquet on Nov. 12 at Cattleman Park and its involvement in all other events and activities relating to Farm City Week Nov. 20-26.

Jeff Knotts, Farm City Awards chair, has the awards nomination forms ready and waiting to be pick up by those who want to nominate Pike County farmers who are outstanding in their fields.

“It’s very important for friends and neighbors to nominate those they feel are deserving of recognition for their hard work, dedication and commitment to agriculture,” Knotts said.

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“Friends and neighbors are the ones who know our farmers and what they do to continue to provide us with food and fiber, so we encourage everyone to think about the farmers they know and nominate those who excel in the work they do.”

Individual awards will be presented in the areas of beef, poultry, timber, row crops, conservation, young farmer, youth and specialty crop.

The service to agriculture award is selected annually by the Farm City Committee.

“The nomination forms are not all that involved but those who make the nominations should have a general knowledge of the nominee’s farming operation,” Knotts said. Nomination forms are available for pickup at the Farm Service Agency, the Pike County Extension Office and the Pike County Chamber of Commerce. Dixie Shehane, committee chair, said the annual Job Swap where a city slicker and farmer trade places for a day so one can learn what the other’s workday is like.

“We haven’t decided who will be invited to participate in the swap but it’s always a fun day and a good learning experience for both,” Shehane said.

She reported to the Farm City Committee on the success of the Brundidge Red Hat Ladies’ visit to Steve Ingram’s farm at Shiloh where they learned about peanut and cotton farming.

“We had ladies from Alabama, Louisiana, Pennsylvania and Wisconsin. They had never picked cotton but they strapped on cotton sacks and went to the field,” Shehane said, laughing.

“Steve did an outstanding job of telling them about the ins and outs and ups and downs of farming and how it has changed over the years.”

The Farm City Committee will involve the students in all schools in the county in activities associated with Farm City Week.

Second graders will be given coloring books with a farming theme. Elementary students, grades K-6, will have the opportunity to participate in the poster contest that is themed “Farmers Care for Animals and You.”

“The poster contest is designed to get students thinking about the fact that our farmers provide us with the safest food in the world,” said Tammy Powell, Pike County Extension coordinator.

“Students in grades 7-12 will be invited to participate in the essay contest with a similar theme.”

The Farm City Committee will also have a booth at the Pike County Fair and be involved in the annual Peanut Butter Festival in Brundidge on Oct. 31.