To provide access to arts and heritage education to fairgoers. The Aitkin County Agricultural Society enhanced their portable stage by adding additional equipment and a sound system. The fair was able to welcome three artistic performers, including a bluegrass band, a clown, and a caricature artist and purchase interactive items that are used in the new agricultural education center.
To promote the preservation of agricultural history, education and diversity at the Ramsey County Fair by showcasing traditional Hmong dances, square dancers, a fife and drum corp, and Agricadabra, a show which featurs agricultural facts and magic.
To offer arts activities that highlight the special attributes of local culture. The Clearwater County Fair will host two workshop sessions of Scandinavian rosemaling, and exhibit the work of two local Native American artists. These two very different cultural events will provide community members the opportunity to learn about cultural differences, similarities, and the rich heritage of the area.
The Emerald Ash Borer (EAB) is an invasive insect that has been decimating ash trees throughout the Great Lakes states. It was first discovered in Minnesota in 2009 and is now found in four counties (Hennepin, Houston, Ramsey, and Winona). EAB poses a particularly serious threat to Minnesota because it is home to nearly 1 billion ash trees that occur throughout the state - the second most of any state.
Funding supports an Irrigation Specialist to develop guidance and provide education on irrigation and nitrogen best management practices (BMPs). In this position, Dr. Vasu Sharma provides direct support to irrigators on issues of irrigation scheduling and soil water monitoring. She is collaborating on the development of new irrigation scheduling tools that help irrigators manage water and nitrogen resources more precisely. These tools help reduce nitrogen leaching losses in irrigated cropping systems.
Native to the western United States and Canada, mountain pine beetle is considered the most devastating forest insect in North America. Trees usually die as a result of infestation and an unprecedented outbreak in the west is currently decimating pine forests there. While mountain pine beetle is not presently believed to reside in Minnesota, there are risks posed by an expanding species range resulting from warming climate and the potential for accidental introduction via lumber imports from infested areas.
To improve access to the historic 1918 barn on the fairgrounds by adding ventilation and cooling. Listed on the National Register of Historic Places, the barn once served as the county poor farm. Today, it's home to various 4-H and youth programming.
To celebrate the 100th Anniversary of the Ramsey County Fair by providing new history programming. The fair will feature demonstrations of "lost arts" such as canning, quilting, and woodwork, in addition to creating a video featuring fair history and a written narrative.
The Minnesota Department of Agriculture (MDA) has designed a Township Testing Program to determine current nitrate-nitrogen concentrations in private wells on a township scale. The MDA has identified townships throughout the state that are vulnerable to groundwater contamination (because of local geology or shallow groundwater) and have significant row crop production. These are the counties that will be prioritized for Township Testing.