A few years ago I read an article online about a really unique idea to show the average non-ag person how farmers raise their animals. The idea was unique because instead of bringing people out to a hog farm, a chicken farm, a beef ranch, a dairy farm and a crop farm this idea brought all of those things to a place where people were already going, the Pennsylvania Farm Show.
The Today’s Ag display at the Pennsylvania Farm Show is one of the coolest things I have seen. Yes I said seen, as in with my own eyes. Last weekend I got to go out to Pennsylvania and check out the Farm Show! I took a ton of photos and borrowed some from my friend Sherry and I hope I can share just how cool this event is.
The Pennsylvania Farm Show isn’t a show just for farmers. It reminded me a lot of the Wisconsin State Fair, without the rides because who wants to ride a ferris wheel when it’s only 10 degrees. But let’s be honest, rides aren’t all that important when you have animals to see, food to try, things to learn and people to watch. The Pennsylvania farm show has all of that and more going on, so let’s take a photo tour of the show!
Let’s start with the food, because it’s fair food and fair food is the best! (Click on a photo to open up the gallery.)
So about those milkshakes… Not only are they delicious, their sales along with their buddies, the fried cheese cubes, generate money that the Pennsylvania Dairymen’s Association uses to fund projects in the community and the works of non profits organizations. In fact just this week $10,000 was donated by the Pennsylvania Dairymen’s Association to the Four Diamonds Fund, a group that helps kids fight cancer. That’s a pretty good reason to have a milkshake if you ask me! And speaking of milkshakes, this year marks the 60th anniversary of milkshake sales at the PA Farm Show. And as everybody knows, the traditional gift for 60th anniversaries is butter.
Every year the PA Farm Show unveils a butter sculpture with a different theme. This year 1,000lbs of Land O’Lakes butter was transformed by butter artist Jim Victor, into dancing cows in honor of 60 years of the milkshake! After the farm show the butter will be hauled out to a local farm with a manure digester and the butter will help feed the digester and create energy.
So obviously the PA Farm Show has food and butter sculptures covered but it wouldn’t be a farm show without animals and produce and activities! Because the farm show has so many animal exhibitors they have to split up the shows up. I didn’t get to see the dairy show but the beef cows gave me my bovine fix.
Even with all of the fun going on I still have to say, my favorite part of the Pennsylvania Farm Show was the Today’s Ag Barn. Getting to interact with people who wanted to know more about where their food starts is always tops on my list. After hearing about the Today’s Ag barn, seeing it in person and being a part of the conversations it generated, was a real thrill. Check out these photos to see what I mean.
The Pennsylvania Farm show runs through this weekend and if you’re in a drivable distance I highly suggest you go and check it out. Have a milkshake, and take it all in and be sure to check out the Today’s Ag display and talk to the farmers there. I know I learned a lot about how other parts of the ag industry do things and I am sure you’ll learn something too!