Having fun and learning at Agri-Palooza

Hundreds of fifth graders from Marquette and Alger Counties spent the day learning about agriculture and the environment in Chatham.

Agri–Palooza is a joint event put on by the Marquette County and Alger County Conservation District as a way for kids to get excited about agriculture.

Giving kids a hands–on experience lets them take the information they learn now, and use it later in life.

“Children are our future, and if you can impact them with environmental stewardship recommendations and educational activities,” Administrator for the Marquette County Conservation District Renee Leow said.  “They’ll carry this message home to their families, and hopefully they’ll have a great impact on the environment now and into the future.”

Over a dozen stations were set up for kids to learn about a wide range in topics, including weather, types of soil, farming, and wildlife.  And, each kid had their favorite activity.

“The hayrides, and learning about the sheep (were my favorite),” Ishpeming fifth grader Jaydnn said.  “I just want to learn about agriculture and what you do for it.”

“The hayride, that was really fun,” Ishpeming fifth grader Dave Perry said.  “And plus we saw some cool things and learn things.  They would show us weird things, they showed us a frog with six legs.”

“I just think it’s beautiful,” Executive Director of the Alger County Conservation District Teri Grout said.  “I see kids being very enthusiastic, raising their hands, listening attentively, which is sometimes difficult with fifth graders, and hopefully learning a few things.”

Activities were put on by a number of groups, such as the DNR, the National Park Service, and the U.S. Forest Service.