Thursday, June 30, 2011

Youth Fall Field day in Ona, Florida

Hey there!

Just got back from attending the University of Florida/Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences (UF/IFAS) Fall field day. This is a GREAT event put on by the UF/IFAS staff to reach out to Junior Cattlemen and other youth around the state. This is my second year going, and as always, I had a blast!

The day started out with checking in with registration at the Ona Range Cattle Station in Hardee County. This is a research facility that opens up its doors to show kids (and their parents) around the state what goes on behind the scenes with ranching and farming. It's not all roping, riding horses, and drinking sweet tea; a lot of research and planning goes into having a successful operation.

I took a few pictures throughout the day... I should have taken a picture of lunch! After all of the activities, attendees were served delicious burgers, and that is precisley when my camera stopped working! ;) A girl has to eat, you know!

This event includes lunch and a trade show following 5 30minute activity rotations. The staff prepared different activities that included:
  • A bug beef lab (all about parasites and things, very interesting to say the least)
  • A Dig Deep Into Dirt lab (all about soil samples and how to tell the differences in soil)
  • Scientific Stomach (explaining that cattle are ruminant - 1 stomach, 4 compartments)
  • Beef Breed learning lab (talking about different cattle breeds and how to make a halter from a lead rope)
  • Agriculture Academia (a great opportunity for the kids and parents to hear about colleges and opportunities that await them in the Agriculture industry)
Some of my awesome friends were in attendance as well!
Kaitlynn Gill - Current FCA Sweetheart
Wendy Petteway - Florida Cattlewomen's Association President
Gene Wingate - Junior Florida Cattlemen's Association Director
Lindsey Wiggins - 4-H extension agent
Chrissy Grimmer - Beef Consumer Representative
and many others!

I love the events, because I feel at home. People who love this industry, love our product, and love to talk to people about it.

Wendy Petteway puts it best: "This is a great opportunity for us to show kids what we do, when they may not otherwise have the opportunity to see it."

I'm looking forward to some awesome times ahead! Can't wait till the next fall field day!

Until next time, God bless, and thank you for following!

The Beef Queen :)

The Beef Breed Learning lab - all about different breeds and charateristics.

A few of the cattle that kids got to see while learning about the breeds. Among other things, they learn that in Florida, Brahma is a very good breed to add to any herd. They are heat resistant and fairly docile, which is really nice in Florida.They pair nicely with Angus cattle, which we have a lot of, too.

We were so jealous of these cows!! While we were suffering from the FL heat and humidity, they were under a sprinkler! They sure looked content! :)

Dr. Tim Marshall from ABAC gave an awesome presentation all about the future of Agriculture and how it pertains to our careers and schooling. He spoke to the participants about choosing a good college, and a good steady career. It was nice, and being a college student, I got a lot out of it!

The entrance to the Cattle station in Ona, FL.

Rounding up the day with a tour of the ranch! A nice hay ride to relax after a full day of learning!

Thanks for following and reading my blog! Feel free to comment or let me know if there is anything that you are interested in learning. I am a huge fan of researching things, and I am also a huge nerd when it comes to the Beef industry - I can't get enough!

Have a great week, and God Bless!

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