Friday, July 25, 2014
Monday, July 21, 2014
“The Ohio State Fair is one of my favorite events of the year because it provides a snapshot of what Ohio has to offer,” said ODNR Director James Zehringer. “Our Natural Resources Park has something for everyone, and we encourage guests to come experience the variety of outdoor activities for themselves.”
Visitors are welcomed into the park by a 15-foot-tall Smokey Bear who greets each child by name. In celebration of Smokey’s 70th birthday, the All Ohio State Fair Youth Choir will be singing “Happy Birthday.” Additionally, a Smokey Bear hot air balloon will float high above the fairgrounds on the mornings of July 23-24, weather permitting.
New this year, guests will have an opportunity to try their hand at disc golf in our Ohio State Parks camping village. Professionals from various disc golf associations throughout the state will be in the park to educate golfers on skills and equipment.
The 7,000-square-foot kayak pond is open daily to visitors of all ages. Take a float around the pond and learn more about paddling from ODNR Division of Watercraft staff. We will also be demonstrating stand-up paddleboarding, one of the newest and most popular water activities, daily at 3 p.m. in the kayak pond.
The Youth Fishing Pond is open to guests under 14. Kids can go fishing and throw back or keep what they catch. Fish filleting and frying demonstrations will also be featured this year at the Fishing Pond for guests of all ages.
The ODNR Amphitheater provides an opportunity to experience outdoor entertainment with seating available for approximately 500 people. Amphitheater entertainment ranges from music and dancers to lumberjacks and animals from the Columbus Zoo. Shows are offered from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. daily.
New this year, the park will host a live performance by the highly acclaimed bluegrass band, The Grascals, on Wednesday, July 30, at 4:20 p.m. The concert will take place in the ODNR Amphitheater and is free for all fairgoers. The Grascals have been previously featured on “The Tonight Show with Jay Leno,” the Grand Ole Opry and performed for two of the nation’s presidents.
Instructors from the ODNR Division of Wildlife will be in the park daily to assist visitors at the Annie Oakley BB Shooting Range. Visitors can also try their hand at archery.
The pioneer cabin at the ODNR Natural Resources Park has been transformed into an Ohio Public House, circa 1800. Volunteers will be in period costumes, and a variety of hands-on activities, games and music will be offered inside and outside of the cabin area.
For any questions or information, visit the ODNR information booth and gift shop for natural resources literature, posters, souvenirs, clothing and toys.
The ODNR Natural Resources Park is open daily during the run of the fair from 9 a.m.-7:30 p.m., and entry is free with state fair admission. Visit ohiodnr.gov/state-fair to access more detailed information about the ODNR Natural Resources Park or check out the daily amphitheater schedule.
The Ohio State Fair runs from Wednesday, July 23, through Sunday, Aug. 3. For more information about the Ohio State Fair, go to ohiostatefair.com.
Thursday, July 17, 2014
This year the Forest Heritage Festival has been moved to a one day only event on Saturday, August 9th, 2014. This unique event offers forestry education and an auction that raises money for Akron Children’s Hospital. The auction offers some very high quality furniture and other nice items. Lumberjack demonstrations, displays, equipment demos, and educational talks round out this fun day. Plan to check it out. For more info visit: http://www.forestheritagefestival.com/
Friday, July 11, 2014
Photos and rest of article HERE
Thursday, July 10, 2014
A broad coalition convened by statewide agriculture groups announced plans Monday to work together to develop a long-term strategy for managing Ohio's water resources. Members of Healthy Water Ohio, an initiative the Ohio Farm Bureau started last fall, said they planned to commission a poll to gather input about Ohioans' concerns regarding water quality and quantity. The polling data will be used to guide development of a 20 to 30-year water management strategy for the state that the coalition expects to issue in the summer of 2015.
Larry Antosch, senior director of environmental policy for the Ohio Farm Bureau, said HWO would review a wide variety of water-related concerns before developing its recommendations. "We really don't know what the final product's going to look like, but our vision is that there would be key issues identified, goals and opportunities and some strategy items," he told reporters during a conference call.
In addition to the Farm Bureau, the coalition's 16-member steering committee includes representatives of: Anheuser-Busch; the Association of Ohio Health Commissioners; Farm Credit Mid-America; Ohio Cattlemen's Association; Ohio Corn Marketing Program; Lake Erie Shores & Islands; Ohio AgriBusiness Association; Ohio Dairy Producers Association; Ohio Soybean Council; Scotts Miracle-Gro; Ohio Federation of Soil and Water Conservation Districts; Ohio League of Conservation Voters; the Nature Conservancy; Ohio State University; and the Village of Ottawa.
A total of 30 groups have already participated in the initiative and more will be invited to engage with working groups that will focus on specific subjects, the coalition said.
Larry Fletcher, executive director of Lake Erie Shores & Islands, said the coalition's steering committee would review economic concerns stemming from pollution and limited quantities of water. "Any time people cannot be assured of having plentiful, safe water for drinking, cooking, irrigating, bathing, for shipping, any other purpose, there's bound to be some economic impact. So we'll certainly be focusing on that," he said.
The group will also consider aging water-related infrastructure, he said, pointing to locks on the Ohio River and dams and public water supply systems around the state. In addition, it will investigate the issue of dredging in Lake Erie and the effects that climate change will have on the state as floods, droughts and precipitation events become increasingly extreme, he said.
Ohio Farm Bureau President Steve Hirsch said the outcome of the plan will determine the coalition's next course of action. "We may have to do some lobbying, we may have to do some public education, there may be lots of things in there that we have to do," he said. The coalition will also address harmful algae blooms that have plagued Ohio's lakes in recent years, said John Stark, freshwater director for the Nature Conservancy.
Agriculture groups were key stakeholders in legislation (SB 150) passed this spring that is designed to reduce the amount of chemical fertilizer running off into streams and rivers that feed toxic algae blooms in Lake Erie, Grand Lake St. Marys and other lakes around the state.
Monday, July 7, 2014
|Lufa Farms in Montreal, Canada, grows vegetables on two sprawling rooftop |
greenhouses today and is expanding to two more. Photograph: /Lufa Farms
But most of us have only a few options for participating in the local food movement: visiting the farmers market or signing up for a community supported agriculture (CSA) subscription. As the movement continues to grow and evolve, however, social entrepreneurs are experimenting with novel ways to make local agriculture an integral part of urban life.
HERE are 10 of the most intriguing projects currently underway: