A team of state conservation officials will join forces to plant a tree during the Kansas State Fair in September to bring awareness to the importance of preserving forests in Kansas.
The Kansas Department of Agriculture’s Division of Conservation, the Kansas Association of Conservation Districts and the U.S. Department of Agriculture Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) will host a conservation exhibit each day at the Kansas State Fair. Additionally, the Kansas Forest Service and the Kansas Forestry Association will be collaborating with the conservation partnership this year and will host a tree planting.
“The booth and tree planting are excellent opportunities to learn about how we can conserve and protect our state’s valuable natural resources,” Division of Conservation Director Greg Foley said. “I would encourage Kansans to plan on including conservation activities as part of their state fair trip.”
The Kansas Forest Service will plant a bur oak tree on the fairgrounds to commemorate the International Year of Forests. The planting will take place at 9:30 a.m. on Monday, Sept. 12, near the Pride of Kansas Building on the Fairgrounds. A forester will demonstrate the proper way to plant a tree with the assistance of children visiting the fair that day. Smokey Bear will be in attendance for the tree planting, as well as at the conservation exhibit on Sept. 12.
Additionally, Kansas Forest Service State Forester Larry Biles, Kansas Secretary of Agriculture Dale Rodman and NRCS State Conservationist Eric Banks will be saying a few words before the planting. The tree planting coincides with this year’s State Fair conservation booth theme of “Working Trees for Kansas.”
The conservation exhibit will be located in the Pride of Kansas Building at the Kansas State Fairgrounds in Hutchinson. Building hours are from 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. on Friday, Sept. 9, from 9 a.m. to 9 p.m. from Sept. 10 – 17 and from 9 a.m. to 7 p.m. on Sunday, Sept. 18. The booth will feature give-aways, literature and packets for educators.
Other conservation-related exhibits at the state fair include the Soil Tunnel trailer, a 3-D view of soil available in Agriland, the hands-on educational exhibit area in the Pride of Kansas Building. Additionally, the Soils Guys, sponsored by NRCS, will be performing live demonstrations of how soil is formed from 11:00 – 11:30 a.m. on September 12, 13, 15 and 16 in the Bretz Law Arena.
For more information about the Kansas State Fair visit http://www.kansasstatefair.com. For more information about the International Year of the Forests visit http://www.un.org/en/events/iyof2011/. For information about the U.S. campaign “Celebrate Forests. Celebrate Life,” visit www.celebrateforests.com.