It is not every day that the University of Missouri South Farm gets to show the community all of the work that goes on there. However, on a beautiful fall day this past September, people of all ages flocked to the farm on the south side of Columbia.
“The goal is to show people what CAFNR does in an exciting way and to show the diversity of the program,” said Tim Reinbott, director of South Farm. “It gives us the opportunity to show the community what they can be proud of.”
The showcase featured numerous CAFNR student clubs and organizations, such as Block and Bridle, Collegiate Cattlewomen, Equine Club, and The Sigma Alpha- Alpha Chi Chapter. This year a new section called “Taste of Mizzou” was added, this was a group of booths that featured samples of foods that are grown at the research facility. There were also different kinds of animals for guests to interact with. A new feature this year was a “passport system” that encouraged kids to participate in 12 different activities to win a free pumpkin. Not only was there a corn maze, but a sunflower maze as well.
Jordan Duenckel is a first-year food science major who assisted with the event.
“I love to see how my major impacts society,” he said. “Handing out Buck’s Ice-cream gave me a chance to connect all the work I do to the consumer. The Showcase is a great way to give everyone a better understanding of where their food comes from”.
This event was first held 11 years ago and the attendance has increased from year to year. The showcase attempts to reach out to more citizens of Columbia and surrounding communities. Many of the families attending do not have an agricultural background, and one goal of the event it is to help improve the general public’s understanding of agriculture in addition to highlighting the specific work going on at the Center.