Agricultural enthusiasts recently visited the Woodstock Fairgrounds, in Woodstock, Ct., to participate in the 14th annual “Celebrating Agriculture” event, a free educational day showcasing the benefits agriculture provides to the region, as well as the challenges farms face today.
The day-long event started in 2001 as part of an effort to promote community education and participation in agriculture, as well as to support consumer purchasing of local farm products. 2014’s event was filled with agricultural equipment, displays, family events, food and entertainment. In addition, event organizers urged local growers and producers to sell their products and demonstrate processes. Woodstock, the hosting town, maintains agriculture as an integral part of both its economic and environmental future.
Dawn Pindell, county executive director of the Windham County Farm Service Agency, said in Hartford Courant coverage of the event, "It's all about having people come out and realize what agriculture means. It's about where our food comes from. It's about what equipment farmers use to harvest the crops to feed the cows that make the milk you drink. It's about our forests because forestry is agriculture, too. A lot of people don't get a chance to see that."
Event organizers hoped that community members learned more about forestry, farming, recreational agriculture, and all the other important facets of agriculture. Due to its local success, the event will likely remain an annual staple of the area’s September events calendar for years to come.