Pennsylvania Association of Conservation Districts

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Berks County Conservation District Teases New SWAG Bus

Photo provided by Berks County Conservation District.

The “SWAG BUS” Conservation Education on the Move!

The Berks County Conservation District has been secretly working hard on an exciting mobile education unit to increase accessibility to their programs. They can’t keep it a secret any longer!

The SWAG Bus (Soil, Water, and Agricultural Education) will be outfitted with hands-on displays and program materials that build awareness about conserving and valuing our precious natural resources. The SWAG BUS will provide quality hands-on conservation education programs for schools, local organizations, and special events.

They hope to be on the road by the Spring of 2023! Check out the SWAG Bus at the Berks County Fair for a sneak peek.

 

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Chester and Warren Complete Multi-Functional Riparian Forest Buffers

Chester County Conservation District’s multi-functional riparian buffer project in the White Clay Creek Watershed.

Chester County Conservation District and Warren County Conservation District completed projects through PACD’s multi-functional buffer sub-grant program

  • Chester County Conservation District planted 1.1 acres of multi-functional riparian forest buffer on a dairy farm in Chester County. The project cost $9,850.
  • Chester County Conservation District planted 5.5 acres of multi-functional riparian forest buffer on a farm in the White Clay Creek watershed in Chester County. The project cost $52,289.
  • Warren County Conservation District planted 1.3 acres of multi-functional riparian forest buffer on a farm in the Conewango Creek watershed in Warren County. The project cost $4,252.94.

Click here to read more. 

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Blair County Conservation District Hosts Education Stations at Local Baseball Stadium

The Blair County Conservation District (BCCD) has partnered with the Altoona Curve for the second year to host educational stations at minor league baseball games throughout the summer.

This year the Altoona Curve is paying homage to the history of Blair County and is changing their team’s name to ‘Mountain City’ for every Thursday Home game. To remain in the historical theme, BCCD created station themes for each home game of 2022 as they relate to the history of conservation and natural resources in Blair County.

Organizations and partners such as the Master Gardeners, Western PA Conservancy, Fish & Boat Commission, Game Commission, Trout Unlimited, PA Department of Conservation and Natural Resources, and local groups were brought together to participate.

The Altoona Curve staff has supplied overwhelming response and support for the events and encourages future partnerships with BCCD. Through these partnerships, BCCD has implemented and highlighted green infrastructure practices at the baseball stadium and neighboring Lakemont Park.

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Lancaster County Conservation District Holds Annual Banquet

Lancaster County Conservation District Manager Chris Thompson speaks during the banquet.

On June 9, 2022, the Lancaster County Conservation District held its 69th annual banquet. The event was held at the Landis Valley Village and Farm Museum, Lancaster, PA. PACD Executive Director Brenda Shambaugh attended the event.

Several individuals were recognized during the event, including recipients of the Youth Conservation School Service Award, Educator Award, Outstanding Cooperator Award, scholarship recipients, and more.

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Lebanon County Conservation District Holds Legislative Roundtable

(Left to right): Taylor Wade, Administrative Assistant; Randall Leisure, Board Chairperson; Jo Ellen Litz, Commissioner; Craig Zemitis, Agricultural Preservation Specialist; Katie Doster, District Manager; Jim Tomanelli, Associate Director; Maranda Smith, CAP Technician; Dan Bost, Representative for Senator Christopher Gebhard; Brenda Shambaugh, PACD Executive Director; Robert Arnold, Director; Karl Kerchner, Assistant Manager; Stephanie Harmon, Watershed Specialist; MaryKate Gallagher, CAP Coordinator; Nate Weaver, Erosion & Sedimentation Technician; and Representative Russ Diamond.

The Lebanon County Conservation District staff met with local legislators on June 3, 2022. The meeting included a staff discussion on conservation programs in Lebanon County. These include agricultural land preservation, erosion and sedimentation control, Envirothon, mosquito-borne disease control, and agricultural programs. Conservation district funding, urban/suburban sprawl in the county, and the countywide Conservation Action Plan (CAP) were also discussed.

PACD Executive Director Brenda Shambaugh also attended the event. Click here to read a news article about the event. 

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Chester County Conservation District Creates Ag Conservation Videos

Screenshot from the “The Basics of Agricultural Conservation: In the Field and Around the Barn Part 2” video.

Chester County Conservation District (CCCD) planned to host agricultural field days with farm tours displaying exceptional best management practices (BMPs). However, due to COVID-19 restrictions, the scope of the project was changed, and the district opted to create a series of educational videos highlighting agricultural BMPs.

CCCD filmed and edited a video series featuring barnyard, cropland, pasture, and operational best management practices. This educational video series features the practices implemented at Walmoore Holsteins and includes video footage of daily operations and an interview with the landowner/operator.

Click here to view “The Basics of Agricultural Conservation: In the Field and Around the Barn Part 1” and here to view “The Basics of Agricultural Conservation: In the Field and Around the Barn Part 2.” 

Financial and other support for this project is provided by the Pennsylvania Association of Conservation Districts, Inc. through a grant from the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection under Section 319 of the Clean Water Act, administered by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.

 

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Cumberland County’s Cover Crop Program is a Model for Others Working to Improve Soil Health and Stem Polluted Farm Runoff

CBF Photo. In a field in Cumberland County, dairy farmer Zane Garber checks on how cover crops improve the soil’s health.

Cumberland County’s cover crop incentive program has become a model for other Pennsylvania counties and farmers looking to improve soil health and reduce polluted agricultural runoff.

The Cumberland County Conservation District’s cover crops program is 15 years old and provides some funding and technical assistance for planting cover crops to roughly 66 farmers. The district has helped farmers plant 8,500 acres of cover crops and estimates there may be at least that many acres not enlisted in its program.

Click here to read the entire article. 

 

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Cumberland County Conservation District Holds Rain Garden Workshop

Photos provided by Cumberland County Conservation District.

Submitted by Lori Glace, Cumberland County Conservation District Watershed Specialist

Fifteen participants joined Upper Allen Township’s Rain Garden Workshop on May 19, 2022, where they learned about “Local Watersheds and Nonpoint Source Pollution,” presented by Lori Glace of the Cumberland County Conservation District, and “How to Build a Rain Garden,” presented by Andy Yencha of Penn State Extension.

Participants helped to plant native plant species in the rain gardens in the parking lot of Upper Allen Township’s Municipal Building. Thank you to Upper Allen Township for their help and preparation to administer the workshop.

Financial and other support for this project is provided by the Pennsylvania Association of Conservation Districts, Inc. through a grant from the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection under Section 319 of the Clean Water Act, administered by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.

 

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Beaver County Conservation District Holds Stormwater Help for Homeowners Workshop

Photo from BCCD.

From BCCD’s Fall 2021 Newsletter

The Beaver County Conservation District (BCCD) held an in-person rain barrel workshop in September 2021. Susan Boser from Penn State Extension presented on watersheds, nonpoint source pollution, and stormwater best management practices. Hannah Ward, BCCD’s watershed specialist, showed a video on how to build a rain barrel and explained the tools needed.

Participants received a rain barrel, rain barrel kit, and informational flyers. After the workshop, participants commented that they would make changes to their property to reduce stormwater run-off. For example, they will install the rain barrel using the materials and knowledge they received at the workshop, implement a rain garden or buffer on their property, or implement some of the best management practices discussed.

Financial and other support for this project is provided by the Pennsylvania Association of Conservation Districts, Inc. through a grant from the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection under Section 319 of the Clean Water Act, administered by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.

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