The Women in Agriculture Conference will take place on Saturday, Feb. 22, at the Russell County Government Center in Lebanon. The Women in Agriculture Conference is designed for anyone interested to learn in an atmosphere where all questions are good questions and welcomed. We are excited to offer activities for youth who are 5-13-year-olds this year. We also hope youth 14-18 years-old join us for our regular sessions. Join us at the roundtable as four local farm women entrepreneurs share their secrets to success while remaining on the farm. We have a diverse agenda that we hope offers something for everyone.

We are especially honored to have Dr. Deborah Reed from the University of Kentucky’s College of Nursing as our special speaker. Dr. Reed is known as the farm nurse. She has focused on farm safety issues. Dr. Reed will be helping us with our special “Farm Safety” one-act play that will be presented during lunch. The play will be presented by members of the Lee FFA Chapter and will focus on key issues in farm safety. Dr. Reed has been conducting farm dinner theatres throughout Kentucky helping to raise awareness.

Registration will start at 9:30 a.m. and the event will conclude by 3 p.m. Lunch is included with registration and a trade show will take place. Registration before Feb. 19 is $20 for a single person and $10 for a youth. To register, please go to https://register.ext.vt.edu/ then select Programs, then Agriculture, then select Woman in Agriculture Conference or mail directly according to brochure directions. After Feb. 19, registration is $30 for single and $15 for youth. Registration will be taken at the door. Those interested may also contact their local extension office to receive a brochure.

The program will start at 9:45 a.m. with three concurrent sessions that participants can choose from.  Sessions include Road Rules for Farm Vehicles, Selling Value Added Products from the Farm, Agriculture Roundtable with Farm Women Entrepreneurs, Getting into Agritourism, Farm Stress, Growing Herbs, Business Plans, and Forest Landowner Tips for Making Decisions. Youth sessions will include Agriculture Careers, Farm Safety, Dream Boards, and other hands-on Agriculture in the Classroom Activities with assistance from local FFA chapters and 4-Hers. We hope to have you join us for this event.

For more information, please contact your local extension office or the Russell County Extension Office at 276-889-8056 or the Lee County Extension Office at 276-546-2057.

Upcoming Events

Feb. 11--Navigating Our Beef Industry Program by Farm Credit, Dinner and Program 5-8:30 p.m., Alphin-Stuart Center, Virginia Tech. No charge but must RSVP to Smyth County Farm Bureau by Feb. 7.

Feb. 12-13-- Virginia State Feed Association meeting, Roanoke. Please contact Mr. Bob Threewitts at 540- 908-7767, email: vsfa@hotmail.com, or Dr. Gonzalo Ferreira at 540-231-1965, email: gonf@vt.edu

Feb. 12-15--National Farm Machinery Show, Louisville, Kentucky.

Feb. 21--Deadline to consign calves to the March 25 VQA Calf Sale.

March 25--VQA Calf Sale, Tri State Market, Abingdon, 7 p.m.

March 28--VA BCIA Bull Sale, Wytheville.

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Dr. Andy Overbay is Smyth County’s agriculture and natural resources extension agent.

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