Schuylkill Conservation District Holds County Grown Cooking Contest

Pictured left to right are contest judge Jeanne Porter – Boyer’s Food Markets, Ray Syzc – 1st Place Winner, contest judge Joe Mattera – The Brick House Grill, Pam Biddle – 2nd Place Winner, and contest judge Kent Heffner – Jersey Acres Farm. Photo provided by Schuylkill Conservation District.

Pictured left to right are contest judge Jeanne Porter – Boyer’s Food Markets, Ray Syzc – 1st Place Winner, contest judge Joe Mattera – The Brick House Grill, Pam Biddle – 2nd Place Winner, and contest judge Kent Heffner – Jersey Acres Farm. Photo provided by Schuylkill Conservation District.

Conservation District Manager Liz Hinkel led the Agribusiness Committee (a committee of the County Chamber of Commerce) to kick off a new “Schuylkill County Grown” product promotion by holding the first Schuylkill County Grown Cooking Contest during the Schuylkill County Fair in July.

The contest was designed to showcase Schuylkill County Grown Products. The entries had to have a minimum of three Schuylkill County Grown ingredients grown by the exhibitor or purchased from a Schuylkill County Grower. The competition had two categories: youth could enter quick breads and adults could enter soups.

Liz reports that the contest went very well for the first year.

Schuylkillproducetags“The County Commissioners were on hand to present the Schuylkill County Agribusiness Committee with a proclamation for the Schuylkill County Grown program.  The Schuylkill County Fair was a great place to kick off this event, and tie in with the local agriculture that they promote, and we are very thankful to them for letting us have the event there this year.  We had a good location and a good crowd on hand during the contest.  We are very hopeful that we can continue doing this in future years at the Fair,” said Liz Hinkel.

Each winner received a gift basket full of goodies donated by local businesses.  In addition, there was a Schuylkill County Grown raffle basket which was on hand all week at the fair.  It was free to enter to win the basket, and those who entered could put down their email address to become part of our Schuylkill County Grown mailing list.

According to Liz, the focus moving forward is on keeping the momentum of the program going, and getting promotional produce tags out to local farms and businesses.

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PACD Staff Attend CREP Workshop in Franklin County

Stefan Karkuff, Farm Bill Biologist for Pheasants Forever in Franklin and Cumberland Counties, talks about thistle control during a CREP workshop on August 6 in Franklin County. Photo taken by Terry Fisher.

Stefan Karkuff, Farm Bill Biologist for Pheasants Forever in Franklin and Cumberland Counties, talks about thistle control during a CREP workshop on August 6 in Franklin County. Photo taken by Terry Fisher.

New for 2015, PACD is starting a Conservation Reserve Enhancement Program (CREP) Outreach Program Office. To begin promoting this project, Program Manager Terry Fisher and Director of Communications & Education Shannon Wehinger attended a CREP workshop in Franklin County on August 6. The event was sponsored by the Capital RC&D.

Several partners and farmers were in attendance. The host farm’s plots of cool season grasses, warm season grasses, and riparian buffers were highlighted on the field tour. Participants asked questions about the best methods for identifying and controlling weeds, how often they can mow, and how to manage their tree tubes for better success.

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2015 Annual 102/105 Meeting Registration is Now Open

Register On-Line Now buttonThe 2015 Annual 102/105 Meeting will be held on October 6-8, 2015 at the Ramada Conference Center in State College, PA.  For more information and to register, go to http://events.r20.constantcontact.com/register/event?oeidk=a07ebb3gu31bde3e4d4&llr=ojcxsrkab.

This year’s training includes three elective tracks on Day 1, one track devoted to Chapter 102 on Day 2, and two tracks (one half-day for a mix of 102 and 105 and one full-day for 105) on Day 3. This training is open to DEP and Conservation District staff only.

A block of rooms has been reserved at the Ramada Conference Center for this event. conservation district attendees may make reservations by calling the hotel directly at 814-238-3001 and asking for the PACD/DEP room block. Hotel reservations must be made by September 10, 2015 to receive the $71.00 per night room rate.

Questions regarding this meeting can be directed to Jill Whitcomb, DEP Water Program Specialist at jiwhitcomb@pa.gov or 717-772-5668 or to Terry Fisher, PACD Program Manager at tfisher@pacd.org or 717-238-7223 x11.   We look forward to seeing you at this year’s 102/105 training!

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Delaware County Conservation District Releases Sediment Basin Video

Screenshot from the Delaware County Conservation District video, “Sediment Basin Maint Part 1.”

Screenshot from the Delaware County Conservation District video, “Sediment Basin Maint Part 1.”

A seven minute video was produced by the Delaware County Conservation District on maintaining sediment basins. According to District Manager Ed Magargee, “This video deals with sediment basin and sediment trap maintenance with a primary focus on the Super Silt Fence baffle.”

This video is a useful tool in educating contractors on best management practices. Click here to view the video.  This is the second video in the district’s Erosion and Sediment Control BMP Series.

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