Farm City Committee plans bicentennial events

Published 6:00 am Thursday, August 16, 2018

Although folks are sweltering through the Dog Days of summer, the award-winning Pike County Farm City Committee is looking toward the fall harvest season and all of the activities and events associated with the relationship between the rural and urban communities.

The local Farm City Committee met Wednesday to welcome new members and make plans that will include the Alabama Bicentennial celebration.

Committee Chair Randy Hale said the theme for this year’s Farm City Week November 16-22 is “200 Years of Agriculture.”
“During this time, we would like to recognize a Farm of Distinction that has been in a family continuously for 200 years,” Hale said. “However, if there is one, we haven’t found it. There is a Pike County farm that has been in a family for about 170 years. We will continue to look and would appreciate any information might be helpful.”

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Hale also suggested to the committee an Alabama200 event that would recognize members of the community over the age of 80 who have made significant contributions to the farm/city relationship over the decades.

The Pike County Farm City Committee, the Best Farm City Committee in Division II for the past three years, begins the year with a slate of activities and events that has become its trademark.

The committee will look at the calendar through a rearview mirror in an effort to connect the technology of today’s agricultural world with that of the mule and plow days of yesteryear.

“This is Alabama’s Bicentennial year and we want to keep with the theme,” Hale said, adding that looking back at 200 years of agriculture will be interesting to everyone because “farming feeds Alabama.”

The identification of Century and Heritage Farms will be a priority. A Century Farm is one that has been in a family continuously for 100 years. A Heritage Farm includes an additional historic structure requirement.

Plans for the Farm City Week activities get off to a big start with a booth at the Pike County Fair and Pike County Farm Days at Cattleman Park on September 18.

Hale said all third graders in Pike County have the opportunity to spend the day learning about daily life on the farm.

Later in the year, the committee will host Classroom in the Forest for all fifth-grade students countywide. The students will spend the day learning about forest and pond management and the wildlife that inhabits the local forests.

The Farm-City Banquet on November 15 will honor those who have made outstanding contributions to agriculture during the year and the winners of the county’s 200 Years of Agriculture poster and essay contests.

Other events planned for the year include participation in Pioneer Days at the Pioneer Museum of Alabama and the Peanut Butter Festival harvest and heritage celebration, a downtown Troy fall market, the Farm-City Job Swap and the Distracted Driver Program.

Hale said, in recognition of the role that agriculture has played in Alabama over 200 years, the committee will host tours of ag-related industries, activities that highlight the role women play in agriculture and library displays that trace agriculture from the standard tractors to technology.

The Pike County Farm-City Committee is open for new membership. Anyone who would like to be a member is encouraged to call Hale at 334-672-3599.