Weatherford Democrat

Farm & Ranch

February 1, 2010

County fairs, why?

Baxter Black, Syndicated Columnist

“Most people just don’t get it,” said Ron, bemoaning the urban politicians that continue to whittle away at funding for county fairs and the ag extension service. “It’s all about the kids learning real life.”

To their misfortune, urban children have much less opportunity to connect with real life. They look at some farm kid working on his show steer every day for months. It is beyond their comprehension. “Why,” they think, ‘Would anyone want to waste their time in such a mindless pursuit?’ and then they whip out their Game Boy and fall into a trance.

Thank goodness there are some politicians, corporations and influential associations that DO get it. As farmers and livestock raisers continue to decline in numbers, it is even more critical that parents, county agents, ag teachers, 4H leaders, scientists and teachers instill in the next generations the realities of life that farming depends on. Does America want to become a net importer of food in fifty years?

I appreciate Mrs. Obama’s garden, Whole Foods specialty markets, organic and natural producers. They have a niche market. But who is going to feed the other 99 percent of our burgeoning population, much less a hungry third world?

Those kids, our kids who are fitting steers, doing chores, picking apples, showing hogs, driving the grain truck, learning to weld, riding pens, irrigating strawberries, managing a pasture, hosing the milk room, stacking hay and learning to read the sky are assimilating the mountain of knowledge that it takes to make dirt and rain into food.

Farm kids start learning the land and the livestock when they are old enough to carry a bucket. When they help with the daily chores they are practicing. It’s like taking piano lessons or tennis lessons except what farm kids learn has a much more profound objective; feeding us all.

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Farm & Ranch
  • Cattle Raisers host ranch gathering in Decatur

    FORT WORTH — Come join the Texas and Southwestern Cattle Raisers Association (TSCRA) for a ranch gathering Thursday, at the Wise County Sheriff’s Posse Arena in Decatur. The gathering will begin at 6 p.m. with registration followed by a beef dinner and presentations.

    July 18, 2011

  • Katrina’s good sports

    In the fall of 2008, before the election, as the recession crashed down around us I gave up on politics.

    March 30, 2010

  • Planned grazing course with Kirk Gadzia this April in Fort Worth

    FORT WORTH — Texas and Southwestern Cattle Raisers and Holistic Management Texas team up to offer a new “Planned Grazing” course at the Will Rogers Memorial Center April 21-25.
    The emphasis for this five-day course will be on grazing planning, but instructor Kirk Gadzia will cover rangeland monitoring, financial planning and land planning as well. The content will be relevant to both managerial and operational level employees, with varying levels of formal education. There will be a lands-on Learning aspect if weather permits. Class runs from 8am to 4:15pm each day.

    March 16, 2010

  • One more for the tourists

    Moira and Clive, British tourists, had taken in the Arkansas attractions of Eureka Springs, the Chuck Wagon races in Clinton, the sale barn in Green Forest, and now found themselves in Fort Smith for the Arkansas Cattlemen’s Association Trail Drive.

    March 16, 2010

  • Cowboy ingenuity

    Cowboys are nothing if not ingenious. It takes that sort of out-of-the-box mentality to allow them to solve the myriad of problems that arise when you combine horse, cow and rope!

    March 9, 2010

  • Local wins at San Antonio Stock Show

    SAN ANTONIO — The Junior Market AOB Steer Show was held Feb. 19, at the San Antonio Stock Show and Rodeo.
    Taylor Cody won the honor of Breed Champion AOB with her 1334 pound steer.

    March 2, 2010

  • Olympic distraction

    You know the inmates have taken over the asylum when you’re turning to PETA as the voice of reason! These are the animal rights extremists who compared eating chicken to the Holocaust, compared the murdering cannibal Jeffery Daumer to butchering hogs, and once proclaimed that it would be great if Foot and Mouth Disease infected animals in the U.S.

    March 2, 2010

  • Scholarships awarded to Parker County youth

    SAN ANTONIO — Cade Hansma and Alannah Chalmers of Weatherford, and Jens Rudibaugh of Poolville, were the recipients of scholarships from the San Antonio Stock Show & Rodeo at this year’s horse and llama shows.

    March 2, 2010

  • Jake working overtime

    In an effort to make managing the 20 section ranch more efficient, the boss bought Jake a Ranger, a four-wheel drive muscle car ATV.

    February 23, 2010

  • Local student wins at Fort Worth Stock Show

    FORT WORTH — Dylan Mask, a 4-H member from Weatherford, exhibited a First Place Medium Weight Hampshire Barrow in the Junior Barrow Show at the 2010 legendary Fort Worth Stock Show & Rodeo Feb. 4. J

    February 16, 2010

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