MIDDLETOWN, N.Y. — Over 2,000 visitors came out to take part in Cornell Cooperative Extension Orange County’s 2022 Ag & Family Festival held at the Education Center & 4-H Park in Otisville, N.Y. over the weekend of July 29th – 31st. Fun and free activities for all ages were enjoyed by many including visiting and learning about animals, meeting and chatting with “Eggbert” about dairy, a hay maze, local bands, food trucks, and so much more!
Visitors and animals alike enjoyed beautiful weather throughout the three days. The Ag & Family Festival is organized by CCE Orange County to showcase their programs including Agriculture and Gardening, 4-H Youth Development, Family & Consumer Sciences, and SNAP-Ed NY in collaboration with other partnering and local agencies. Educational entertainment and activities were featured along with locally sourced food being served by the Clover Café, Food Trucks and Chicken BBQ Fundraiser, in addition to the annual Animal Shows and Project Judging organized by the Orange County 4-H Program. Jeremy’s Shake Shack was a favorite stop throughout the Festival with all proceeds going to support the Education Center & 4-H Park and scholarships for Orange County 4-H Youth. Some of the other fun offered included a pedal tractor pull competition, a book nook and lawn games, and collecting bugs-in-goo.
“It was rewarding to see the public coming to visit the Education Center & 4-H Park while also seeing all that Cornell Cooperative Extension has to offer through the Ag & Family Festival. The smiles and community spirit shared by staff, volunteers, and visitors is the best reward of all the planning that goes into the Festival” said Shelly DeHaan, Board President of CCE Orange County.
CCE Orange County is proud to congratulate all youth who participated in the Animal Shows and Project Judging this year including 15 youth who exhibited their sheep and competed in showmanship, 6 youth who participated in a dairy showing and fitting clinic, 17 horses in the arena with additional riders from neighboring counties and area stables, and 10 youth who competed in various levels of showmanship with their dogs.
“Being a part of the Ag & Family Festival was so meaningful to me in many ways. My favorite part of the experience was caring for my Summer Yearling dairy cow “Velvet” and interacting with the families who visited her. I feel blessed to be a part of one of the few remaining dairy farms in Orange County and the opportunity to share my enthusiasm and knowledge with the visitors was a privilege” shared Lexi, Orange County 4-H Youth Participant.
Over 200 static projects were entered into this year’s Project Judging with 41 selected to advance to the New York State Fair. There were 20 youth exhibitors that entered to show animals, present public presentations, participate in a fashion show, and demonstrate their Rube Goldberg and robotics projects.
CCE Orange County thanks all of the agencies, partners, volunteers, and vendors who came together to hold such a successful event. Whether you missed it this year or are already excited to join in all the fun, be sure to save the 2023 Ag & Family Festival dates to your calendar, Friday, July 28th, Saturday, July 29th, and Sunday, July 30th, 2023!
Cornell Cooperative Extension and its partnerships provide programs for Orange County residents on youth and family development; nutrition, health, and food safety; community and economic vitality; and agricultural sustainability through Cornell based research. Committed to Orange County, we design programs to meet local needs to enable people to improve their lives and communities. For more information call Cornell Cooperative Extension Orange County at 845-344-1234 or visit our website at www.cceorangecounty.org.
–CCE Orange County