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Mercer County Farm City Breakfast
  • April 01, 2014

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Though more winter weather loomed on the horizon, more than 100 Mercer County residents, elected officials, business people and farmers gathered Tuesday for the 13th Annual Mercer County Farm City Breakfast held at the Mercer County Extension office.

The event, sponsored by the Mercer County Farm Bureau, Mercer County Conservation District, Mercer County Cooperative Extension Service and Mercer Chamber of Commerce, provides each organization the opportunity to review past efforts while promoting upcoming events to keep agriculture and business leaders connected to what is happening in Mercer County.

Mercer County Judge Executive Milward Dedman opened the breakfast and Mercer County Farm Bureau President Jamie DeHart welcomed those in attendance and recognized sponsors and special guests. Mercer County Agricultural Extension Agent Linda McClanahan kicked off the breakfast with an update to the new farmer’s market building, which is slated to be finished July 1, “We are excited about the new building and the benefit it will be to our community.” Instead of her normal summary, McClanahan showed the trailer to the upcoming film “Farmland,” which follows the lives of six young farmers now running their family farm, encouraging attendees to see the film “It is important to share our story, your story, and it’s a good opportunity for people to see agriculture in a positive light.”

Jill Cutler, Executive Director for the Mercer Chamber of Commerce, touched on the progress the Chamber has made. “We are about leadership,” Cutler said noting their adult, youth and golden leadership groups in addition to the new minority leadership group being developed in cooperation with Luci Hockersmith, agent for family and consumer sciences. Other Chamber initiatives included educational efforts within the business community, Mercer and Burgin school systems and work being done to bring in post-secondary education opportunities, along with the fun activities like Pioneer Days, regional after hour business events, ribbon cuttings and business development events.

Featured speaker Warren Beeler, Kentucky Department of Agriculture (KDA) director of ag policy, gave a presentation outlining current trends in agriculture. The information all pointed to the fact that “farmers must adapt to a public presencethat knows little about the farm.” Beeler touched on some of the federal agriculture policies with the farm bill allowing for hemp production in pilot projects for research. Kentucky’s universities are working on different seed varieties and their uses, along with production capabilities to determine profitability. Beeler’s presentation included the technological advancements made in farming that allow for better stewardship of the land and water,animal management practices including handling, transport, sickness, shelter and meeting the world’s food demands.
Stephen Bailey, vice-chair of the Mercer County Conservation District, wrapped up the presentations by citing the work done in the schools to educate the youth and “to teach them the right practices.” Bailey also reminded the audience of the landscape tree planting cost share program at the conservation district. Also during the meeting Rep. Kim King with the assistance of Sen. Tom Buford presented extension office staff a framed copy of the proclamation from the Kentucky House of Representatives recognizing 100 years of service from the extension offices in Kentucky.

The meeting concluded with several door prizes, and Old Fort Harrod State Park Executive Director David Coleman gave away a weekend’s stay at a Kentucky state park lodge. For more information on the National Farm City Council, whose purpose is to bring better understanding between rural and urban people by increasing their knowledge and appreciation of each other, visit www.farmcity.org.


Mercer County Farm Bureau celebrates Food Check-Out Week
  • February 20, 2014

Harrodsburg, KY (February 19, 2014) – The cost of food in America remains affordable. According to the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Economic Research Service, American consumers spend, on average, just over 10 percent of their disposable income for food. That means the average household will have earned enough disposable income – that portion of income available for spending or saving – to pay for its annual food supply in about seven weeks, said Kentucky Farm Bureau president Mark Haney.

“America’s food supply is the most affordable as well as the safest in the world,” Haney said. “Domestic foods that are produced by farmers in Kentucky and throughout the United States are responsible, in part, for our nation’s increased standard of living.”

In recognition of this, Mercer County Farm Bureau is celebrating February 16-22, 2014, as Food Check-Out Week.

To mark the occasion, on Monday, February 17, 2014, members of the Mercer County Farm Bureau Women’s Committee purchased $400 of food from Save-A-Lot for the Back Pack Programs of Mercer County Schools and the Burgin Independent School. The Back Pack Programs feed over 245 children each week. The schools fill over 100 back packs weekly with food that is easy to prepare by the children on the weekends. Joni Horn, the Women’s Committee Chair also attended the Mercer County Fiscal Court Meeting on February 11, 2014. She presented the Food Check-Out Week proclamation. It was adopted unanimously by the Mercer Fiscal Court, which declares Food Check-Out Week in Mercer County as February 16 through February 22, 2014.

Long after Food Check-Out Week, Americans are required to continue earning income for other necessities. The Tax Foundation has reported that Americans must work over 100 days to pay their federal taxes.

“We work much longer to pay for federal taxes than for food,” Haney said.

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Tiffany Ison, Linda McClanahan & Megan DeHart Kendra Rowland, Leigh McRay & Joni Horn


Mercer County’s Linda McClanahan wins American Farm Bureau Federation’s Excellence in Agriculture Award
  • January 20, 2014

San Antonio, TX (January 14, 2014) – Mercer County’s Linda McClanahan bested competitors from around the country at the American Farm Bureau Federation (AFBF) annual convention this week to take home the Young Farmer & Rancher “Excellence in Agriculture Award.”

This award recognizes young farmers and ranchers who do not derive the majority of their income from an agricultural operation, but who actively contribute and grow through their involvement in agriculture, their leadership ability and participation in Farm Bureau and other organizations.

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Linda McClanahan of Mercer County (left) received the Young Farmer & Rancher Excellence in Agriculture Award at the American Farm Bureau Federation’s 95th annual convention, held in San Antonio, TX. The award was presented by Bob Stallman, AFBF President (center), and Mark Gilbert of General Motors (right).

McClanahan, who was also winner of Kentucky Farm Bureau’s 2013 “Excellence in Agriculture Award,” is a Mercer County extension agent for agriculture and natural resources. She also produces a daily radio program on WHBN, writes an article each week for The Harrodsburg Herald, creates industry-focused newsletters for her farming community audience, and offers her expertise as a guest columnist in the Mercer County Cattlemen’s Association newsletter.

As the winner of this national competition, McClanahan was presented with her choice of either a 2014 Chevrolet Silverado or a 2014 GMC Sierra, courtesy of GM, and a paid registration to the 2014 Young Farmer & Rancher Leadership Conference in Virginia Beach, VA, February 7-10.

“This award means a lot to me. It means that my work has been impactful, the judges were able to see the importance of the programs that I have done, and they were able to see my passion for agriculture,” said McClanahan. “It also means that all the hours, the night meetings, the weekend events, and all the things that I have done have paid off, but, more importantly, that they truly have made an impact on the industry in Mercer County and throughout Kentucky.”

For more information about the 95th American Farm Bureau Federation annual meeting, held in San Antonio, TX, visit annualmeeting.fb.org.

Article taken from Kentucky Farm Bureau - http://kyfbnewsroom.com
URL to article: http://kyfbnewsroom.com/mercer-countys-linda-mcclanahan-wins-american-farm-bureau-federations-excellence-in-agriculture-award/

KFB Annual Meeting
  • January 09, 2014


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Linda McClanahan (center right) received the 2013 Excellence in Agriculture Award at Kentucky Farm Bureau’s 94th annual meeting held in Louisville. The award was presented by Mark Haney, KFB President (left); Bill Johnson, CEO of Farm Credit Services Mid-America (center left); and David S. Beck, KFB Executive Vice President (right).
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Young Farmer Co-Chairs for MCFB Zack Ison, center left, and Jamie DeHart, center right, accepting the Gold Star Award of Excellence from KFB President Mark Haney, left, and KFB Executive Vice President David S. Beck.
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Bill Waggener, center, received a plaque commemorating MCFB’s 2013 Safety Challenge Award from Dan Smaldone, KFB Director of Public Relations, left, and David S. Beck, KFB Executive Vice President, right.
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Doris Hamilton was awarded the County Farm Bureau Information Award. It is in recognition of excellence in member communications, outreach, media relations, and Farm Bureau promotion. Presented by Todd Bright.
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MCFB was recognized for outstanding membership and program achievement. Jamie DeHart, center, accepted the award on behalf of MCFB from Executive Vice President of KFB Insurance Companies Brad Smith, left, and KFB Executive Vice President David S. Beck.
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Joni Horn, Chair of MCFB Women’s Committee (right), accepts the 2013 Gold Star Award of Excellence from chair of the KFB State Women’s Committee Phyllis Amyx.
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Nominated by MCFB, Jennifer Elwell received the Farm Public Relations Award during the 2013 KFB Annual Meeting. She is pictured with Todd Bright, left, and David S. Beck, KFB Executive Vice President, right.



Mercer County Farm Bureau Annual Meeting
  • September 09, 2013

The Mercer County Farm Bureau annual meeting was attended by over 100 members. Highlights of the evening included the Youth Contests, the Outstanding Young Farmer Awards, and many other recognitions along with officer and board member elections. Our Youth Contestants this year were: Ben Pinkston (winner), Dustin Stewart (runner-up), Taylor Gray (winner), Emily Hamilton (runner-up), Taylor Worthington, Devinann Gibson, Ashlin Kendrick, and Rachel Wheeler. The Variety Contestants were: Emily Hamilton (winner), Kaylee Miller (runner-up) and Taylor Worthington. Our Outstanding Young Farmer award recipients were brothers, John and Jeremy Sims of Salvisa.

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Austin Hazelwood and Dustin Stewart Attend Institute for Future Agricultural Leaders
  • July 31, 2013

Mercer County Farm Bureau sponsored two students for the annual Institute for Future Agricultural Leaders (IFAL) conference. IFAL is a unique five-day summer leadership conference that exposes students to college life and explores different fields of study for careers in agriculture.

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Above, IFAL participant, Austin Hazelwood is accompanied by Kentucky Farm Bureau’s Second Vice President, Fritz Giesecke. Austin attended IFAL at the University of Kentucky. He is the son of Brent and Susan Hazelwood. Above, Dustin Stewart takes a break from his IFAL experience at Murray State University with Kentucky Farm Bureau’s Organization Division Director, Matthew Ingram. Dustin is the son of Rose Stewart of Burgin.



Scholarships awarded by Mercer County Farm Bureau
  • July 11, 2013

Ashton Jones and Alex McRay, recent graduates of Mercer County Senior High School, are the recipients of $1,000 college scholarships from Mercer County Farm Bureau. These awards are two of the 250 college scholarships worth a total of $337,300 that the Mercer County Farm Bureau, the Kentucky Farm Bureau Education Foundation and numerous other individual county Farm Bureau organizations awarded this year to deserving students from across the Commonwealth.

Jones received the Mercer County Farm Bureau Young Farmer Scholarship designed for students pursuing a degree in agriculture. He plans to attend the University of Kentucky to obtain a degree in Agriculture Education. Jones will pursue a career in agriculture extension or as a high school agriculture teacher. He is the son of Mike and Debbie Jones of Salvisa.

McRay is the winner of the Mercer County Farm Bureau Scholarship open to all members. He is headed to Morehead State University to major in Agriculture and plans to be an agriculture teacher. He is the son of Mike and Leigh McRay of Harrodsburg.

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Young Farmer Cookout
  • April 13, 2013

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The crowd gathered around Zack Ison in anticipation of the 4-wheeler raffle drawing at the Young Farm Family Cookout.


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Albert Alexander (seated) was the lucky winner of the Young Farmer scholarship fund raffle—a Yamaha Grizzly 300. Making the presentation were: (left to right) Derrick Leigh of Lee’s Inc., Zack Ison, Mercer County Farm Bureau vice president and young farmer co-chair, and Jamie DeHart, Mercer County Farm Bureau president and young farmer co-chair.


The Mercer County Farm Bureau Young Farmer’s 4-wheeler raffle came to an end at the Young Farm Family Cookout on Saturday, April 13, with the drawing of Albert Alexander’s ticket. The project raised more than $3,000 for the Mercer County Farm Bureau Young Farmer Scholarship Fund. This will be the second year for the MCFB Young Farmer Scholarship presentation that will be awarded to a graduating Mercer County senior who is pursuing a college degree in agriculture.
The Young Farm Family Cookout provided many other activities and entertainment for those in attendance. The young children enjoyed the bounce house, while others played corn hole and visited the business displays. The evening ended with door prizes and then guests were surprised with the ATV raffle drawing.




Legislator Appreciation Event
  • March 28, 2013

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Mercer County Farm Bureau hosted their annual Legislative Session Review along with the Mercer Chamber of Commerce. Kentucky State Senator Jimmy Higdon and Representative Kim King both gave an overview of the recent session and took many questions from the crowd.

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Mercer County Farm Bureau legislative committee chair, Charlie Ison, presented a small gift of appreciation to Representative Kim King (pictured here) as well as Senator Higdon. 

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Representative King and Jerry Bowling of WHBN Radio discussed the issues.



Mercer County Farm Bureau Reads Farm Books for National Ag Day
  • March 19, 2013

Each year during National Agriculture Week, Mercer County Farm Bureau celebrates by reading farm related books to the elementary children across the county. This year we visited more than 40 classrooms and talked to nearly 1,000 children from Preschool to 3rd grade. We read the American Farm Bureau book of the year, The Guardian Team, as well as Beef Cattle A-Z. Pictured here is Doris Hamilton reading to a group of students from Mercer County Elementary School.

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Farm Bureau Assists FFA
  • February 22, 2013

Mercer County Farm Bureau officers, President Jamie DeHart and Vice President Zack Ison helped Burgin FFA celebrate National FFA week with a cookout for the students. Mercer County Farm Bureau also presented Burgin FFA and Mercer County FFA chapters with $150 each to support their 2013 awards banquet.

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Food Check-Out Week
  • February 20, 2013

Mercer County Farm Bureau celebrated Food Check-out Week by donating $200 worth of food to the school’s backpack food program. The Fiscal Court also unanimously approved a proclamation naming February 17-23 as Food Check-out Week in Mercer County.

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Mercer County Recognized at the KFB Annual Meeting
  • December 14, 2012

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Mercer County Farmer, Stephen Bailey, received 2nd place honors in the Ky Farmer of the Year Program. Bruce and Charissa Wade took home 3rd place in the Ky Farm Bureau Outstanding Young Farm Family contest. Linda McClanahan placed second this year in the Excellence in Ag Contest. Excellence in Ag contestants are judged based on their knowledge of current ag issues and their involvement in the Agriculture issue as demonstrated through their work and documented by a written application and a powerpoint presentation.
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Linda McClanahan (left) and Doris Hamilton accept the award for the County Activities of Excellence contest for Mercer County’s FarmSchool Week program conducted at our local elementary schools. Mrs. Peggy Waggener accepts the Women’s Gold Star award on behalf of the Mercer County Farm Bureau Women’s Committee from KFB Women’s Chair, Phyllis Amyx (right). Zack Ison (left center) and Jamie DeHart (right center) Co-chairmen of the Young Farmer Committee accept the Young Farmer Gold Star. DeHart and Ison are also currently serving at the Mercer County Farm Bureau president and vice president, respectively. Presenting the award are: KFB President, Mark Haney (left) and KFB Executive Vice President, David Beck.



Stephen Bailey is Finalist in the KFB Farmer of the Year Contest
  • October 31, 2012

Stephen Bailey, of Mercer County, has been named a top 2 finalist in the Kentucky Farm Bureau Farmer of the Year program. Bailey, a 38-year farming veteran, raises beef cows and calves, stocker calves, corn, soybeans, alfalfa, mixed hay and wheat on his farm in Harrodsburg. He began full-time farming immediately after graduating from college, and, over time, has increased the size of his farm from 440 total acres to his current 2,080-acre operation. He has been a KFB member all 38 years of his farming career, serving as a Mercer County Farm Bureau Board member for four years and was named Mercer County’s Young Farmer of the Year in 1978. He also served as a Southern States Cooperative board member for 12 years, including four years as its Chairman, is currently the Mercer County Conservation District Supervisor and Vice Chairman of the Conservation Board of Supervisors, and is active on numerous other local civic and industry-specific organizations.

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Young Farmers Raffle off Pedal Tractors
  • September 28, 2012

The Young Farmer committee just completed another year of raffle ticket sales to earn money for the Young Farmer Scholarship. Pictured here are: Linda McClanahan, Elaine Clark, Zack Ison, Jamie DeHart, Zac Mink (holding son, Colton), Bria Mink (holding daughter, Alexia) and Ag Commissioner, James Comer. The Young Farmers raised almost $1,900 for the scholarship this year.

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Young Farmer Fall Fling
  • September 25, 2012

After being postponing once due to rain the clouds cleared off just in time for the Fall Fling. Almost 100 young farmers attended, enjoying a pedal tractor pull, fresh made apple cider and all the fun of Devine’s Corn Maze.

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Field Day
  • September 13, 2012

The Mercer County Agriculture Field Day was an overwhelming success this year with about 270 people in attendance. The farm tour stops included: ATV safety, Feeding Cattle in a drought, tobacco production and agri-tourism and vegetable production. Mercer County Farm Bureau also offered ATV safety information at their booth.

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Young Farmers Raffle
  • September 10, 2012

Mercer County Farm Bureau young farmers will be raffling a 2012 Yamaha Grizzly 300 to raise funds for the Young Farmer Scholarship. Tickets are $20 each and only 300 will be sold. Tickets are available at the office or at many of the community events throughout the year.

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2012 Outstanding Young Farmer of the Year Award
  • September 10, 2012

Ian Thomas received the 2012 Outstanding Young Farmer of the Year award from young farmer chairman, Zack Ison (left). Ian is the 22 year old son of Jim and Susanna Thomas of Harrodsburg. He is very active in the local community serving on the Cattlemen’s Association board of directors; is an active member of his church, and the Mercer County Fire District. He was also elected to the Mercer County Farm Bureau board of directors tonight. Ian has built an impressive farming operation in only four years. He currently has 700 acres of leased pasture in partnership and also leases 430 acres of crop and pasture land for feeder cattle, brood cows, and alfalfa hay. In addition, he has also purchased 63 acres of land, adjoining some of his leased property. His operation consists of 65 cow/calf pairs, 1,200 head of feeder cattle and 35 acres of alfalfa hay. In the future, Ian and his fiancé, Elaine Clark, plan to expand the cow herd and diversify the operation into tobacco production and several hundred acres of grain crops.

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Mercer County Farm Bureau Annual Meeting
  • September 10, 2012

The Mercer County Farm Bureau annual meeting welcomed a crowd of nearly 130 members. Highlights of the evening included the Young Contests, the Outstanding Young Farmer Award, and many other recognitions along with officer and board member elections.

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Outstanding Young Farm Family Contest
  • August 31, 2012

A Mercer County family has been named one of the top 3 finalists in the 2012 Kentucky Farm Bureau Outstanding Young Farm Family Contest. Bruce and Charissa Wade are pictured here with daughters, Alexa and Mia. Bruce and his family farm over 3,000 acres of land.

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Young Farmer Summer Outing
  • July 15, 2012

Mercer County Farm Bureau sent 19 young farmers to the Kentucky Farm Bureau Summer Outing in Covington, KY. They enjoyed farm tours, Farm Bureau policy meetings and lots of fun activities.

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 Old Tractor (Custom)  race track (Custom)  Laura (Custom)  



Scholarship Winners Announced
  • May 14, 2012


2012Scholarship Winners (Custom) The 2012 Mercer County Farm Bureau scholarship winners were announced at senior awards night on May 14. Matthew Hamilton was the winner of the $750 Mercer County Farm Bureau Young Farmer Scholarship. Allisa Sowder was awarded the $1,000 Mercer County Farm Bureau Federation Scholarship. Both recipients will be attending the University of Kentucky in the fall. 




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