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Forum staff reports , Published October 25 2013

Ag calendar - 10/25/13

Sustainable ag grants available

The North Central Region Sustainable Agriculture Research and Education program (NCR-SARE) is seeking applicants for its grant programs.

The programs focus on research and education. Funding is based on how well the applicant states the research and educational components of his or her sustainable agriculture grant proposal. Each program has specific priorities, audiences and timelines.

Here is a brief description of the grants and the deadline for proposals:

•Research and Education Grant Program – A competitive program for researchers and educators involved in projects that explore and promote environmentally sound, profitable and socially responsible food and/or fiber systems. Research and Education projects must include a strong outreach component and significant farmer/rancher or other end user involvement from the start through the implementation of the project. Pre-proposals were due Thursday.

• Farmer Rancher Grant Program – A competitive program for farmers and ranchers who want to explore sustainable solutions to problems through on-farm research, demonstration and educational projects. Proposals must be submitted by 4 p.m. CST Nov. 14.

• Professional Development Grant Program – Supports state professional development programs and competitive grants for training agricultural professionals. These competitive grants emphasize training agricultural educators in Extension, Natural Resources Conservation Service, private and not-for-profit sectors, using farmers as educators and addressing emerging issues in the farm community. Pre-proposals are due in mid-March and proposals are due in mid-May.

“This is a great opportunity to enhance specific goals of a community and possibly receive substantial funding for the project,” says Bill Hodous, a North Dakota State University Extension Service agent in Ramsey County and NCR-SARE’s co-coordinator for North Dakota.

For more information about the grants, visit NCR-SARE’s website at www.northcentralsare.org/State-Programs/North-Dakota. More information also is available from Hodous at (701) 662-7030 or bill.hodous@ndsu.edu, or Karl Hoppe, area Extension livestock specialist at the NDSU Carrington Research Extension Center and SARE state co-coordinator, at (701) 652-2951 or karl.hoppe@ndsu.edu.

Sheep shearing, wool classing schools set for Nov. 23-25

HETTINGER, N.D. – If you are interested in learning more about sheep shearing or becoming certified for wool classing, plan to attend the North Dakota Sheep Shearing School on Nov. 23-25 at the Hettinger Fairgrounds or the Certified Wool Classing School Nov. 23-25 at the Hettinger Armory.

The topics to be covered during the sheep shearing school include:

• Professional shearing patterns;

• Tagging and eyeing;

• Equipment maintenance and repair;

• Wool handling and preparation.

Instructors for the school are Wade Kopren, a South Dakota professional sheep shearer; Mike Hagens, North Dakota professional sheep shearer; Reid Redden, North Dakota State University Extension Service sheep specialist; and Mike Schuldt, a Montana State University Extension agent.

The school is open to those who are experienced or non-experienced in sheep shearing. To allow for one-on-one instruction, registration is being limited. The registration deadline is Nov. 8.

The registration fee is $125. The fee includes tuition, handbook, DVD and singlet. The North Dakota Lamb and Wool Producers Association is providing $250 in scholarships to state residents 16 and older. The scholarships will be distributed evenly among qualified applicants.

Topics to be covered during the wool classing school include:

• Wool fiber growth, development and production;

• Objective wool measuring;

• Genetic selection programs;

• Hands-on wool grading;

• Wool contamination and handling practices;

• Wool classing, packaging, labeling and marking;

• Test for level 1 certification.

The instructors are Ron Cole, American Sheep Industry Association wool education consultant, and Lisa Surber, Montana State University Wool Lab manager.

The fee for the program is $175, which includes tuition and materials. The classing school is limited to 12 students and the registration deadline is Nov. 8.

For more information on both schools, contact Chris Schauer at (701) 567-4323 or email christopher.schauer@ndsu.edu. Entry fees for both schools can be sent to the Hettinger REC, P.O. Box 1377, Hettinger, ND 58639.

The sheep shearing school is sponsored by the North Dakota Lamb and Wool Producers Association, NDSU Hettinger REC and NDSU Extension Service. The same organizations, along with the American Sheep Industry Association, are sponsoring the certified wool classing school.

Schauer, director of the Hettinger REC, is coordinating both events.

Nominations sought for ND Ag Hall of Fame

The selection committee of the North Dakota Agriculture Hall of Fame is asking the public for candidate suggestions for the 2014 inductees. Either organizations or individuals may nominate candidates, and the deadline for nominations is Dec. 1.

The North Dakota Agriculture Hall of Fame is a statewide organization that recognizes those people who have made a meaningful contribution to the state’s agricultural industry.

Individuals are eligible to be nominated if they satisfy at least two of three requirements:

1. At least 45 years old;

2. Retired from an agriculture-related career;

3. Accumulated at least 20 years of service to the ag industry in North Dakota.

The permanent home for the state’s Agriculture Hall of Fame, which was established by the state Legislature during their 1997 session, is at the North Dakota Winter Show in Valley City. The display is available for viewing at both the NDWS Event Center and the Rosebud Visitor’s Center in Valley City.

Agricultural groups and organizations, which are represented on the selection committee include: North Dakota Lamb & Wool Producers, North Dakota Grain Growers, North Dakota Stockmen’s Association, North Dakota Oilseed Council, North Dakota Department of Agriculture, North Dakota Pork Producers Council, NDSU Extension Service, National Agricultural Marketing Association, North Dakota Farm Bureau, North Dakota Farmers Union, North Dakota Vocational Agriculture, North Dakota Winter Show and a representative from North Dakota’s farm broadcasters and ag journalists.

The new inductees will be chosen in December and then honored during a ceremony that will take place at the North Dakota Winter Show, on March 8, 2014.

Those who want a nomination form or more information on the North Dakota Agriculture Hall of Fame should contact the North Dakota Winter Show office by calling (800) 437-0218, by mail at P.O. Box 846, Valley City, ND 58072 or at ndws@northdakotawintershow.com. Nomination forms can also be printed from the website, www.northdakotawintershow.com.