University of Maryland Extension

The annual Tri-County EAC Picnic

Author: 
Harmony Miller
The farm host, Edward Snodgrass from Emory Knoll Farm.

Harford County Extension Advisory Council was proud to host the annual Tri-County Picnic on July 22, 2013, welcoming guests from throughout Harford, Baltimore and Carroll Counties to celebrate Extension and showcase its role in our local community. 

Like many counties in Maryland, Harford County has a long history of agriculture and guests experienced that history, beginning with their tour of Emory Knoll Farm. The farm host, Edward Snodgrass, provided a personal tour of his operation, demonstrating the challenging and exciting transition he has made from traditional agriculture into green roof plant production. In a small footprint of less than 5 acres, guests observed this unique operation and the great and far-reaching impact a business can have regionally, nationally and internationally.  

Dinner was provided by nearby restaurant, The Laurrapin, from Havre de Grace, Maryland. They worked closely with EAC to provide a delicious meal representing local products. A growing trend observed in our community, in addition to throughout our nation, Laurrapin works with local producers to incorporate their homegrown ingredients, from herbs to cheese to beef. The result is the promotion of local agriculture by providing an outlet for their goods to create honest and flavorful food. Guests enjoyed produce from a local vendor who promotes Community Supported Ag, delicious cheese from a nearby creamery, and local pork.  

These two examples of Harford County businesses provide an exciting glimpse into a community of tradition and forward vision that extends beyond our County and to those across the state.  Even more importantly, it showcases Extension’s role in creating and influencing these opportunities. Observing an increase in the demand and appreciation of locally grown products, community gardens and open conversations about our food supply should speak volumes about the success of Extension in their mission to educate. Through reaching out to school children about food and nutrition, homeowners with home gardening questions, and producers striving to create a better product, Extension has an important and wide-reaching mission that is necessary and lasting. Extension’s work is truly grass-roots at the local level with worldwide impacts related to the direction of food production, protection of our natural resources and water quality; all shaped by the consumers that Extension educates.

Extension continues to be successful thanks to dedicated staff and volunteers. The importance of their mission and the services Extension provides are invaluable. The change Extension has already influenced and the work that still needs to be done will continue to serve our diverse and growing communities.

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