Sixth annual Local Foods Expo scheduled

The Niobrara County Fairgrounds will be the scene of the sixth annual Local Foods Expo to be held on Tuesday, April 11th from 5:00 – 8:00 p.m.  The Expo is sponsored by the Niobrara County Extension Office and is designed to get everyone excited about gardening and all of the associated benefits of gardening and eating local foods.  This year’s program promises to be of interest to local gardeners, local food producers and consumers.

Three educational workshops will be held at the Expo. “Fruit Production and Management for Eastern Wyo.” 5- 6 p.m. Learn how to plant, provide care, and select varieties for fruit production in Wyoming. This workshop will mainly focus on fruit trees and shrubs for our area. Brian Sebade, University of Wyoming Extension Educator

Preparing, Protecting, Planning… the Works 6:15 - 7 p.m. For all things winter—in your greenery space. Topics covered will be:  Preparing your greenery for the winter to help ensure the most success the following spring and summer. Protecting greenery from common “pests” like deer, rabbits, and voles, but also Mother’s Nature’s pesky strong wind and bright sun… and recognizing the tell-tale signs of these perpetrators. Making the most of the long winter months by planning ahead for spring and summer.Abby Perry, University of Wyoming Extension Educator.

Growing Giant Pumpkins and Giant Pumpkin Contest 6:30-8:00 p.m. Join the giant pumpkin craze and receive giant pumpkin seeds to grow your own giant! Jay Richards, Washakie County Master Gardener and Caitlin Youngquist, University of Wyoming Extension Educator.

The Kid’s Corner

Soil Buddies- Make and take a homemade chia pet. Abby Perry, University of Wyoming Extension Educator. 5:00- 5:30 or 7:30-8:00.

Mom and Me Cooking- Learn to make homemade fruit salsa and cinnamon sugar tortilla chips.Julie Balzan- University of Wyoming Extension Educator. 5:30-6:15 or 6:30-7:15.

Numerous educational and informational booths will also be available throughout the evening for Expo goers to visit.  These booths will include:  

Pressure Canner Gauge Testing & Food Preservation. Vicki Hayman-University Extension Educator. Even though canning season is a few months away, bring your pressure canner gauge to be tested for free.  Also get free research based canning information for all of your food preservation needs.

“Better Bags”. Ellis Harvest Home and Pumpkin Patch- Lingle. Order your locally grown vegetable baskets that will be delivered to Lusk during the summer months. 

Safe Produce- learn how to choose and keep your fresh produce safe from field to plate. Erin Smith, Wyoming Department of Agriculture Consumer Health Specialist. 

Great American Eclipse 2017. Niobrara Chamber of Commerce, Jackie Bredthauer, Chamber Director.

Niobrara County Cattle Women. Besides serving delicious beef samples and having beef promotional information and recipes, the Cattlewomen will be sharing information on using local beef in the Niobrara County school lunch menus.

Produce ID and Produce Judging— learn how to choose the best produce and what are some of the more unusual produce in the grocery store.Chrisanna Lund, Niobrara County Extension and 4-H Produce Judging Coach.

Soil Test Kits- get your free test kits and find out what you need to do to have your soil ready for spring planting.

Bees— learn tips and tricks for raising bees.Catherine Wissner, Laramie County Extension Horticulture Educator.

Patio Gardening—Gardening without a garden-growing your own food made easy. Ashley Garrelts, University of Wyoming Extension Educator.

Real Food—learn how to get involved in the educational class series to help you eat better with real foods. Karla Case, University of Wyoming Extension Educator.

Gardening Adaptations—Rick Geringer, Wyoming Agribility Project.

Make Your Own Veggie Necklace— Linda Kane, Niobrara County Homemakers Creative Arts Chairman.

Gardening Through the Generations—Hannah Swanbom, University of Wyoming Extension Educator.

Blender Bike Smoothies- Niobrara County 4-H Junior Leaders.

Niobrara County Soil Conservation District.

 The Expo is free of charge and everyone is invited and encouraged to attend.  There will be door prizes, tasty food samples, lots of great information and sharing of ideas.  Please plan to join us for an evening of learning and for a great start to spring and gardening season.  Any questions, call the Niobrara County Extension Office at 334-3534.


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