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Connecting and network developing
by Kristy Watters
Day one of AgriPOWER VI session two was a crash course in how to get your message out and be heard. Dan Toland from Wilt PR and Callie Wells from Ohio Farm Bureau gave overviews of social and visual media while Melanie Wilt from Wilt PR and Joe Cornely from Ohio Farm Bureau presented on structuring the message and making it digestible for the masses. We all know that what we say is important, but how you say it may be even more so if you want to be heard. The group ended the day with a delicious meal and tour of Troutman Vineyards just minutes from Wooster.
Day two began with a tour of the Ohio Agricultural Research and Development Center (OARDC) including the Secrest Arboretum, Quasar facility, labs and greenhouses. The group then had the unique opportunity to have dialogue on current issues facing agriculture with those on the front lines such as an immigration discussion with Bruce Buurma, Buurma Farms; water quality with Dr. Larry Antosch, Ohio Farm Bureau; and the consumer perspective on GMOs and associated research with Jennifer Coleman, Ohio Soybean Council. Great group interaction with a lot of questions from different perspectives on these topics was a highlight of the session for me. The day ended with a brief lesson from the golf pro at beautiful Hawk’s Nest golf course.
The last day of the session included farm tours of Rittman Orchard, a very diverse and well marketed family produce operation, and Bristol Dairy, a large family farm focused on best management practices for the animal and environment. Both farms are very impressive operations in their own right.
After only the second session, the AgriPOWER VI class is starting to really connect and I am loving the network we are developing. I am looking forward to September when we head to Washington, D.C.!
Read more blogs from AgriPOWER participants.
Watters, of West Union, is the fiscal officer/educational coordinator for the Southern Ohio Agricultural & Community Development Foundation.