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Agriculture in Johnson County

Johnson County Elementary students enjoy a day at the farm


By Leigh Anne Shull
UT/ TSU Extension- Johnson County

“Why is Agriculture Important?” “Where does my food come from?” “How is that made?” After a recent visit to a local farm, 3rd and 4th-grade students across Johnson County were better able to answer these questions.
The Johnson County UT/TSU Extension Office held its 6th Annual Farm Day event at Iron Mountain Farms in Butler on Monday, October 7. The event helped students learn the importance of agriculture and how important it is to our everyday lives.
While at Farm Day, students visited nine different stations that in part included Mary Shull and Holly Tindell, local beekeepers in Johnson County, taught students the importance of beekeeping and about the different types of bees and their roles.
Charlie Brown and Keith Gwinn, of Tri-State Growers CO-OP, taught students abou beef cattle. Students were amazed to learn about different by-products beef cattle produce like gum,

gelatin, soaps, plastics, and some medicines.
When arriving at the horse exhibit, Diana Hilton, taught the students about several of the different breeds of horses.
At the sheep exhibit,
Mollie Ingle, of Iron Mountain Farms, taught students about the different breeds of wool sheep and products made from wool. The children were also able to experience hands-on learning by petting and feeding sheep, as well as feeling different types of wool.
Lori Kegley, of Iron Mountain Farms, talked about different poultry breeds.
The students also enjoyed helping her count to ten and watch as her rooster fell asleep.
Others who gave of their time to welcome the students included Diane and Dante Bolognese, of Pine Needles Farm, Cindy Church, of Appalachian Black Walnuts, Jason Hughes, from USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS), Brandon Stout and Cody Buck from the Tennessee Department of Forestry who taught students about fire safety including the proper ways to prevent and respond to a fire.
As a result of Farm Day, we hope that the 3rd and 4th-grade students of Johnson County have a better understanding of life on the farm and where their food comes from.
“We also hope they will learn to appreciate the farmer and all of the hard work and dedication associated with this occupation,” officials at the UT/ TSU Extension- Johnson County said.
Johnson County Extension would like to thank Farm Bureau and Farm Bureau Women, the Johnson County FFA and 4-H Honor Club, as well as all the presenters and the many volunteers who devoted their day and their time to share the importance of agriculture with local students.
A special thank you goes out to James and Lori Kegley of Iron Mountain Farms for investing time and effort in preparing their farm to host our event.