Tag Archives: event

Fall Forestry and Wildlife Field Tours celebrate 40th anniversary

Registration is now open for the Fall Forestry and Wildlife Field Tours. This year marks the 40th anniversary of the tours.

Registration is now open for the Fall Forestry and Wildlife Field Tours. This year marks the 40th anniversary of the tours.

Combining education, networking, sightseeing, and good food, the Fall Forestry and WildlifeField Tours have provided the opportunity to learn about sustainable forestry management for 40 years and counting. This year’s tours, offered by Virginia Cooperative Extension and the Virginia Forest Landowner Education Program in Virginia Tech’s College of Natural Resources and Environment in collaboration with Virginia’s natural resource agencies, companies, and associations, will start on Oct. 7.

The tours offer landowners, natural resource professionals, and other interested individuals the opportunity to spend a day in the field visiting a variety of properties that are actively managed. Participants will visit private, industry, and public lands that center on multiple-use management opportunities and practices. At each tour stop, participants meet with landowners to hear their stories, learn from their experiences, and even share a meal.

Complementing the 40th anniversary of the tours, the Virginia Forest Landowner Education Program has recently created a series of videos highlighting the experiences of several participating landowners. In addition to the field tours, the award-winning program offers a number of training sessions and other resources throughout the year, including weekend retreats, short courses, online classes, and newsletters.

“We wanted to know if our programs were actually making a difference,” said Jennifer Gagnon, Virginia Forest Landowner Education Program coordinator.

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Virginia Tech to host 96th annual 4-H Congress

students in a garden

4-H Congress participants take part in myriad educational activities during their time on campus in Blacksburg. Pictured here, students take an educational tour of Virginia Tech’s Hahn Horticulture Garden with Alex Niemiera, professor of horticulture and woody plants curator.

More than 500 eager 4-H members and volunteers will descend upon Virginia Tech’s Blacksburg campus June 27-30, 2016, for the 96th annual Virginia 4-H State Congress.

4-H State Congress is the premier 4-H event for outstanding 4-H teens and adult volunteer leaders. Its mission is to provide competitive and noncompetitive educational experiences for Virginia teens to help them develop the life skills and leadership abilities needed to become contributing citizens in their communities.

Each year, participants are offered dozens of workshops, showcases, and competitions to take part in during their time at 4-H State Congress. The activities cover topics such as communication and expressive arts, healthy living, leadership, service learning, animal science, and environmental science and outdoor education. Participants customize their experience by choosing to participate in the activities that most interest them.

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National Agricultural Leaders To Gather in Virginia Beach With Goal Of Strengthening Support of U.S. Small Farmers

a banner advertising the samll farmer and rancher conferenceMore than 700 agricultural leaders from across the country will gather in Virginia Beach September 20-22 to identify ways to secure the future success of our nation’s small farms and ranches, numbers of which have been dwindling for decades, while the number of very large farms has seen rapid growth.

The conference specifically focuses on small farmers because of the vital role they play in the national economy, environmental sustainability, local (agro-) biodiversity, and landscape and cultural heritage. Yet they face unique challenges that set them apart from mid-size or large farming operations.

According to the USDA, a small farm is any farm whose gross cash farm income is less than $350,000. Farms who generate more than that annually are considered commercial farms. A whopping 89 percent of U.S. farms are considered small and operate nearly half of the country’s farmland, however those farms account for only 22 percent of agricultural production in the U.S.

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Conference brings together partners in health

Crystal Tyler-Mackey, Dorothy McAuliffe, and Eric Bowen

Virginia’s first lady Dorothy McAuliffe (center) stopped by National Health Outreach Conference to underscored the importance of healthy habits. McAuliffe is flanked by Crystal Tyler-Mackey, VCE community viability specialist  and Eric Bowen, VCE area food safety agent.

Health professionals, educators, and policymakers gathered in Roanoke in April to learn more about building partnerships in communities to promote physical and mental wellness.

The 2016 National Health Outreach Conference, hosted by Virginia Cooperative Extension, was grounded in the theme “All Aboard: Building Partnerships for a Healthy America.”

“This conference brings many different individuals together from fields as varied as nutrition and exercise, mental health, and community viability,” said Crystal Tyler-Mackey, community viability specialist with Extension. “By using a comprehensive approach to address the needs of often underserved populations, we are able to not only be concerned with marginalized populations, but also with providing culturally relevant programming and solutions to the groups that we serve.”

Indeed, Extension is often the crux of relationships in communities that strive to be leaders in wellness and seek out many different partners to achieve health and wellness goals.

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Virginia Cooperative Extension co-hosts the 2016 South Atlantic Hops Conference

Beer brewers, hop growers, and everybody in between is invited to attend the 2016 South Atlantic Hops Conference to be held March 4-5 in Richmond, Virginia, at the Clarion Hotel Richmond Central.

hop yard

Hops are gaining popularity as a niche market crop that could be cultivated to support the burgeoning craft beer industry in the commonwealth.

This year’s expanded conference is a collaboration of faculty from Virginia Tech, North Carolina State University, Virginia Cooperative Extension, Virginia State University, and grower members of Old Dominion Hops Cooperative.

The event is a prime opportunity for beginner and experienced hop growers alike to learn and network. Associated industry stakeholders are also encouraged to attend. Registration and tickets for the event can be found on the conference’s website.

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