Children across Missouri are buzzing about agriculture thanks to the South Farm Showcase held this past Saturday, September 21. In the showcase’s sixth year, the event offered families a free day on the farm to learn about Missouri agriculture and wildlife in a fun atmosphere.
According to John Poehlmann, assistant director of the Missouri Agricultural Experiment Station, the event offered “everything from insect eating to wine tasting, from feeling the inside of a cow’s stomach to petting snakes.” This year’s showcase also included an exotic animal petting zoo, a weather balloon, a trained hawk demo, cockroach races and a Mizzou favorite, Buck’s ice cream. The only other time you can enjoy all those activities in one location is by visiting the showcase next year. Although, you’ll want to plan to spend the day as the event has grown steadily each year.
When not always used as a family-friendly agritourism destination, South Farm acts as both a farm and teaching laboratory in a variety of areas including animal science, plant science, veterinary science, biology, botany and other disciplines. The farm is home to the Swine Research Complex, the Beef Research and Teaching Farm, the Turf Center, USDA Agricultural Research Service and the Horse Farm. The farm also supports research and demonstration projects in entomology, poultry and maize genetics. The Missouri Foundation Seed program uses South Farm to increase the sales of newly developed seed varieties to dealers. It provides hands-on teaching to more than 1,500 students annually.
*Photo courtesy of the Columbia Missourian.