Ag Progress Days preparations in full swing

UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. -- Preparations are ramping up for Penn State's 2013 Ag Progress Days exposition, which will be held Aug. 13 to 15 at Rock Springs in Centre County.

Sponsored by the College of Agricultural Sciences, the expo is held at the Russell E. Larson Agricultural Research Center, nine miles southwest of State College on state Route 45. Admission and parking are free.

Bob Oberheim, Ag Progress Days manager, said the event's variety will appeal to a wide audience.

"Pennsylvania has a very diverse agricultural industry, and we try to make the event reflect that," he said. "Visitors are sure to find something relevant to them, whether they operate a dairy or livestock farm, grow fruits or vegetables, produce wood products or tend a garden."

With more than 480 commercial exhibitors expected to display the latest goods and services, Ag Progress Days provides one-stop shopping for producers. Interactive educational exhibits, guided tours and workshops will highlight the latest science-based practices.

But Oberheim noted that the event is not just for those involved in production agriculture. "Through fun and educational activities, consumers and families can learn about how their food is produced, how they can improve their health and nutrition, and how Penn State agricultural research and extension programs help ensure a safe and abundant food supply while minimizing environmental impact," he said.

The College of Agricultural Sciences Exhibits Building and Theater will provide a hub for expert information and presentations on topics such as renewable energy, water quality and quantity, pest prediction and response, and issues in animal science and production.

Faculty and extension staff also will be on hand throughout the grounds to answer questions and provide information on crop, dairy, livestock and equine production; conservation practices; integrated pest management; woodlot management; farm safety; and home gardening and lawn care. Visitors also can get a glimpse of scientific research under way at the surrounding, 2,100-acre Russell E. Larson Agricultural Research Center.

A new field demonstration this year will feature hay mergers and choppers, according to Oberheim. Returning machinery demonstrations will feature hay mowing, hay rakes and tedders, hay baling, bale handling and a new cover-crop interseeder developed by Penn State scientists.

Other planned activities and attractions include family living exhibits; food demonstrations; a corn maze; horse exhibitions and clinics; wildlife displays; children's activities; exhibits of antique farm and home implements in the expanded Pasto Agricultural Museum; and a wide variety of food booths.

Sponsored by Penn State's College of Agricultural Sciences, Ag Progress Days is held at the Russell E. Larson Agricultural Research Center at Rock Springs, nine miles southwest of State College on Route 45. Hours are 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Aug. 13; 9 a.m. to 8 p.m. Aug. 14; and 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Aug. 15.

For more information, visit the Ag Progress Days website. Twitter users can find and share information about the event by using the hashtag #agprogress.

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Last Updated August 20, 2013