Ag Literacy Festival

10:00 am
Agricultural Research & Development Center, near Mead
UNL ARDC, 402-624-8000,
Ag Awareness Coalition and Festivals

With continued urban growth, many youth do not have as much exposure to agriculture as in the past. Many communities are losing touch with Nebraska’s greatest resource - agriculture. The Agricultural Literacy Festival provides an opportunity for youth to take a close-up look at agriculture.

The Ag Literacy Festival is sponsored by the Agricultural Awareness Coalition of Nebraska. The goal of the Agricultural Awareness Coalition is to help youth (predominantly urban) become aware of agriculture. The group develops resources and opportunities that will increase youth understanding and awareness about agriculture concepts.
About the Coalition and Sponsors

Current coalition members and sponsors include:
•Agriculture in the Classroom
•Douglas County Farm Bureau
•Midwest Dairy Association
•Nebraska AgRelations Council
•Nebraska Agri Business Club
•Nebraska Beef Council
•Nebraska Corn Development, Utilization and Marketing Board
•Nebraska Extension in Saunders, Lancaster and Douglas/Sarpy Counties
•Nebraska Pork Producers Association
•Nebraska Soybean Board
•Omaha Agribusiness Club
•Papillion Grange No. 401
•University of Nebraska Agricultural Research and Development Center
19,472 Students Attended Ag Literacy Festivals

The first fall festival was held in 1996 at the UNL’s Agricultural Research and Development Center (ARDC) near Mead, Nebraska. The one-day event served as a pilot project for 200 Omaha Public School sixth-graders. It has since grown to four days annually and hosted up to 950 fourth-grade students, primarily from Douglas, Sarpy and Saunders Counties.

Over 13,856 students have attended the fall festival from 1996-2014. In an effort to reach more urban youth, a spring festival was added in 2001 at the Lancaster County Event Center in Lincoln. This festival is primarily for Lancaster County youth. It, too, started as a one-day festival and has grown to 2 days. In 2014, the festival will be held for 3 days to accomodate even more students!

Over 5,600 students have attended the spring festival. At the festivals, students learn about beef production/products and food safety, ruminant nutrition, dairy production/products and nutrition, grain production/products, farming technology, and swine. Horses, poultry, goats, and horticulture have also been included, depending on the time available.

Students and teachers consistently give the festivals excellent reviews.

Fall 2016 festival dates are: Oct. 1, 2, 5, and 6.

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