The West Virginia University Extension Service will offer up a 10-day blend of tradition and future at the State Fair of West Virginia in Fairlea from Thursday (Aug. 9) to Aug. 18 through everything from time-honored livestock 4-H projects to the innovation of a championship robotics team.
WVU Extension Service Dean and Director Steve Bonanno said the fair is an opportunity to honor the state’s agricultural roots and showcase the new directions the state is heading — through a fun and family-oriented atmosphere.
“Our bread and butter is youth livestock shows and 4-H projects; however, there’s also a group of 4-Hers from Monroe County who went to Detroit earlier this spring to compete in a robotics world championship who are showcasing their engineering and programming skills with a wandering robot,” he said. “It’s an opportunity for all generations and lifestyles to come out and learn what the University can offer them, and their families, personally. The answers may surprise them — we can help them with a single tomato plant, or we can put them, their children or their grandkids in contact with college ambassadors for all of WVU’s campuses and get them thinking about what’s next for the state.”
The WVU Building on the fairgrounds will host a rotating selection of the University’s programs and people. The WVU Extension Service will be there with expert demonstrations and information from faculty and staff on topics of broad interest, such as recipe demonstrations, nutrition outreach programs, home fire safety and canning advice.
WVU Extension Service’s influence stretches all across the fairgrounds, coordinating junior livestock shows in cooperation with FFA and hosting 4-H-oriented activities in the Cecil H. Underwood Youth Center.
Not to be missed, across from the WVU Building is the WVU Extension Master Gardener demonstration garden and demonstration high tunnel, where fairgoers can take a stroll through the gardens and high tunnel to witness all sorts of plants, from ornamental to fruit-bearing, and get gardening advice from highly-trained Extension Master Gardeners.
Representatives from WVU will conduct the popular “Ask Me Anything” sessions, where fairgoers can ask any question, large or small, they have about the University and get a candid answer. Sessions on Aug. 10 and 11 will center on admissions and student life at WVU and sessions on Aug. 16, 17 and 18 will focus on alumni and the Mountaineer Parents Club.
There are special themed days for the fair as well. Friday (Aug. 10) is 4-H Day at the Fair, where 4-H participants can get a special rate on tickets and participate in a scavenger hunt around the grounds. West Virginia Day is Aug. 16, where many notable University administrators will visit the fair.
The WVU Building is open to the public from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. daily, except for the first day of the fair when it opens at 11 a.m. and the last day of the fair when 5 p.m. is the closing time. WVU-themed prize drawings take place at noon and 5 p.m. daily.
CONTACT: Zane Lacko
WVU Extension Service,
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