There are lots of gatherings this time of year in the agricultural community and UF/IFAS Extension is excited about participating in all of them.
The Bunnell Bonanza attracted families to a fun-filled day of games, pony rides, hay treasure hunts, food trucks and live music. The event was held at P&L Horse Stables on September 15th, 2018, and it attracted 17 vendors and approximately 500 participants. UF/IFAS Flagler County 4-H Agent (Alisha Hutchinson) and Ag Agent (Wendy Mussoline) engaged well over 300 kids and parents to share the 4-H mission of developing citizenship, leadership, responsibility and life skills of youth ages 5 to 18. A big hit was our hand-painted photo booths for kids that highlighted sunflowers and sea turtles. Sunflowers offer an array of benefits as they serve as pollinator plants for bees, provide seeds for birds and distract pests from our food crops. Our sea turtle booth was used to generate interest in a hopeful marine science-based 4-H group that will focus on preserving our coastal ecosystems in Flagler County.
Suds, Spuds and Bok Choy
Suds, Spuds and Bok Choy was a newcomer on the scene this year held at the State Agriculture Museum in Flagler County on September 23rd. Although potatoes are not in season, there were plenty of datil peppers to pass around. UF/IFAS Flagler Extension offered recipes, 4-H activities, education on alternative crops grown in the Tri-County Agriculture Area. Sharon Treen (Flagler County Extension Director and Family & Consumer Sciences Agent) talked to folks about healthy food choices while Alisha Hutchinson was busy recruiting new volunteers to lead 4-H groups this upcoming year. Wendy Mussoline had purple sweet potatoes from Blue Sky farms and datil peppers from Revels Pepper Company on display to teach the public about alternative crops in our area. The Datil Rooster food truck offered a delicious bowl of datil infused clam chowder for only $5 and it was a nice compliment to our basket ‘o hot peppers and sweet potatoes.
Much More to Come
UF/IFAS Extension will be present at the Datil Pepper Festival happening this weekend (OCTOBER 6-7) in St. Johns County. The 11th Annual Datil Pepper Festival will feature the Datil Restaurant Cook-Off with datil pepper-inspired cuisine from some of the First Coast’s top local restaurants. Taste tickets are $1 and go on sale 30 minutes before the cook-off.
What: Datil Pepper Fall Festival
When: October 6th from 9 AM to 4 PM; October 7th from 10 AM to 3 PM
Where: UF/IFAS St. Johns County Extension Office, 3125 Agricultural Center Drive, St. Augustine.
UF/IFAS Extension will also be present promoting Horticulture, 4-H and Agriculture at the Creekside Music and Art Festival in Flagler County. The 14th Annual Creekside Festival has 130 register vendors and is anticipating 8000 to 10,000 guests. The MAIN STAGE will feature live bluegrass and folk music featuring The Florida State Bluegrass Band, Passerine, Aslyn and the Naysayers, Seminole Ridge, Remedy Tree, Headed South bluegrass band, and Sam Pacetti. Handmade arts and crafts will be available. The cost is $10 per carload.
What: Creekside Music and Art Festival http://www.flaglerchamber.org/pages/creekside-festival
When: October 6th from 10 AM to 5 PM; October 7th from 10 AM to 4 PM
Where: Princess Place Preserve, 2500 Princess Place Road, Palm Coast
We spread ourselves thin, work in cooperation, and do whatever it takes to promote the diverse roles of Extension in our communities. Hope you can get out and join us on this beautiful weekend!