Farming is featured at annual Ag Days Farm community takes center stage this weekend CARROLL COUNTY FARM/BUSINESS

February 04, 1993|By Amy L. Miller | Amy L. Miller,Staff Writer

This weekend, Carroll County's agricultural community would like to show residents how close they are to their ice cream, meat and vegetables.

The annual Ag Days display tomorrow and Saturday at Cranberry Mall will feature displays from nearly 50 Carroll agricultural and natural resource organizations. Each will try to educate the public about some aspect of farming.

"The agricultural community sponsors Ag Days because it feels it's very important for citizens in Carroll County to understand where their food and fiber come from and to get to know some of their agricultural neighbors," said Carroll County cooperative extension agent Robert Shirley, who is organizing the show.

The event, scheduled in late winter when most farmers are not busy with crops or other farm duties, also features attractions such as a children's pedal-tractor pull, a fashion show and a homemade ice cream churn-off.

Families and organizations each prepare their favorite ice cream recipe in old-fashioned, hand-operated ice cream makers, Mr. Shirley said.

"All the recipes are judged by a very distinguished panel," he said, with a laugh. "But the most exciting part is that everyone there gets to taste the ice cream."

Another display will feature aerial photographs of farms around the county. Visitors can try to guess whose farm is pictured and where it is.

"It does bring to people's attention that farmers live close to where they live and that farming is in all parts of the county," Mr. Shirley said.

Some farmers will lend 15- to 20-year-old photographs of their property to be hung beside more recent shots.

"That should show how the farm and the surrounding property may have changed," Mr. Shirley said.

"The message farmers are trying to get across is that they are indeed stewards of the land," Mr. Shirley said. "They are extremely concerned about environmental issues. The American farmers strongly believe that they were the first to be concerned about the soil, water and wildlife."

Participants will also show visitors that farmers and 4-H members treat their animals humanely.

"With all the animal rights concerns, it's good for the kids and the public to interact and see each other's viewpoints," said Peggy Soper, adviser to the Carroll County Livestock 4-H Club. Club members plan to show visitors what types of products come from livestock and share a few meat recipes.

"People are often surprised about some of the products other than meat and hides that come from livestock," Ms. Soper said, citing a type of insulin that comes from hogs as an example. "It's a basic promotional event, and we like to take advantage of it."

Previous Ag Days, at Carrolltowne and Cranberry malls, have been very successful, Mr. Shirley said.

Last year, Cranberry Mall managers reported that the Ag Days weekend was one of the busiest of the year for the mall.

"That made us think we were attracting people," he said.

Ag Days events

FRIDAY

Continuing: Wool spinning, exhibits at the 4-H and Carroll County Association for Family and Community Education areas.

6 p.m.: Coloring contest awards on stage, near Leggett.

6:30 to 7:30 p.m.: Registration for Homemade Ice Cream Churn-off.

7 to 8:30 p.m.: 4-H Food and Nutrition Bowl competition on stage, near Leggett.

7:30 to 9 p.m.: Homemade Ice Cream Churn-off, near Leggett.

SATURDAY

Continuing: Wool spinning, exhibits at the 4-H and Carroll County Association for Family and Community Education areas.

Noon to 2 p.m.: Square dancing by the Gingham Square Dance Club of Westminster, near Montgomery Ward.

2 to 3 p.m.: Fashion show by the Fashion Trends 4-H Club on stage, near Leggett.

6 to 7 p.m.: Registration for children's pedal pull, near Leggett (parent must accompany child).

7 to 9 p.m.: Children's pedal pull by the Central Maryland Antique Tractor Club, near Leggett.

7:30 to 8:30 p.m.: Carroll County Cloggers of Westminster, near Montgomery Ward.

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