Lodinews.com

default avatar
Welcome to the site! Login or Signup below.
|
||
Logout|My Dashboard

Lodi students flock outside for AgVenture

Print
Font Size:
Default font size
Larger font size

Related YouTube Video

Posted: Thursday, March 8, 2012 12:00 am | Updated: 12:29 pm, Thu Mar 8, 2012.

Bustling crowds milled through the Lodi Grape Festival Grounds, weaving through towering machines. Ponies, alpacas and goats were penned up in a petting zoo where eager little hands reached through to stroke soft fur. Inside, local growers and business owners explained their craft to inquiring groups.

This was the Lodi-Linden AgVenture 2012. More than 3,000 third-graders descended on the grounds to explore the journey from farm to fridge.

After six years, teachers and volunteers are used to the drill. Classes moved smoothly from one station to the next. But the students were wide-eyed with wonder.

During the four-hour field day, students are introduced to a range of aspects of farm life as well as other aspects of the industry. Volunteers gave presentations on train safety, allowing kids to ring a train bell afterward. The line was long for a chance to make cream into butter using a hand crank, and then sample the goods on a cracker.

Event coordinators were bundled against the chill wind as they surveyed the scene with satisfaction.

"These are our future consumers. We want to familiarize them with local crops, so they know not to purchase watermelons in January," Janet Dyk, AgVenture coordinator.

Candy Petersen, a cattle rancher in Farmington and a member of the San Joaquin and Stanislaus Cattlewomen, was on hand to share her knowledge with a diorama of a cattle ranch, complete with barns, fences and cow figurines.

A group of students from Creekside School learned that one cow can make 720 hamburgers. They learned Texas longhorn cattle have horns with a width of five feet. And they learned Black Baldies are a breed of beef cattle popular for their docile nature and high beef content.

But this wasn't the information that stood out.

Jaws dropped open when Petersen explained cow byproducts are used in shampoo.

"I'm never washing my hair again!" said America Andazola, 8.

Petersen wasn't surprised at the kids' reaction.

"They have no idea what animals represent to human existence," she said. "Cows are noble creatures. They give their lives so our lives can be better."

In another corner of the Grape Pavilion, Kevin Moorman, 17, used sugar cubes to demonstrate how much sugar is in an average bottle of soda, and how to read nutrition labels.

"We want kids to make healthy choices. Water is really the best choice during the day, with a glass of milk at dinner," he said. Moorman studies sports medicine in an ROP program, so he volunteered to help teach nutrition at AgVenture. Kids shouted out different kinds of veggies and fruits as tasty alternatives to junk food and sodas.

More presentations on corn, tomatoes and weights and measures were scattered around the grounds.

Agriculture is the No. 1 industry in the county, said San Joaquin County Agriculture Commissioner Scott Hudson, so officials are keen to explain to kids why it's so important.

"I hope these kids will get a better appreciation for agriculture. They need to learn that food comes from the farm, not from grocery store shelves," said Hudson.

Contact reporter Sara Jane Pohlman at sarap@lodinews.com.

More about

More about

Rules of Conduct

  • 1 Use your real name. You must register with your full first and last name before you can comment. (And don't pretend you're someone else.)
  • 2 Keep it clean. Please avoid obscene, vulgar, lewd, racist or sexually oriented language.
  • 3 Don't threaten. Threats of harming another person will not be tolerated.
  • 4 Be truthful. Don't lie about anyone or anything. Don't post unsubstantiated allegations, rumors or gossip that could harm the reputation of a person, company or organization.
  • 5 Be nice. No racism, sexism or any sort of -ism that is degrading to another person.
  • 6 Stay on topic. Make sure your comments are about the story. Don't insult each other.
  • 7 Tell us if the discussion is getting out of hand. Use the 'Report' link on each comment to let us know of abusive posts.
  • 8 Share what you know, and ask about what you don't.

Welcome to the discussion.

Video

Popular Stories

Poll

Loading…

Mailing List

Subscribe to a mailing list to have daily news sent directly to your inbox.

  • Breaking News

    Would you like to receive breaking news alerts? Sign up now!

  • News Updates

    Would you like to receive our daily news headlines? Sign up now!

  • Sports Updates

    Would you like to receive our daily sports headlines? Sign up now!

Manage Your Lists