Catawba County Center
Catawba County Center
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           Attention Catawba County Employees:

  Stop by our nutrition education exhibit at the  Employee Appreciation and Benefits Fair on April 11, 2017 from 10:00 a.m. - 2:00 p.m.  
Learn about the  Mediterranean pattern of eating and how locally grown foods available at our farmers markets can fit into this healthy way of eating.

Catawba Valley Cattlemen's Association Meeting
              (meets the 2nd Tuesday of each month)  This month's meeting is on
                        Tuesday, April 11, 2017 at the Newton Extension office building.
6:00 pm - Supper is served. Meal Sponsored by Ryan Proffitt Feed Specialist (Sales Rep for Performance Feeds)
6:45 pm --- Business meeting - Donald Beard, president
7:00 pm Informational meeting: Cattle nutrition & feed products Ryan Proffitt,
                                                        Vaccination protocols & vaccines by Walt Graham
                                                         Questions welcome during the meeting or individually     8:00 pm - Meeting adjourned                                                                    after the meeting.

The Big 4 of Every Garden
Advanced Gardener Series

Thursday, April 13, 2016
6:00 - 7:00 PM
Patrick Beaver Memorial Library
375 3rd St NE, Hickory, NC 28601

Tuesday, April 18, 2016
6:30-7:30 PM
Newton Public Library
115 West C Street,  Newton, NC 28658

Tuesday, April 25, 2016
6:30-7:30 PM
Maiden Public Library
11 S A Ave,  Maiden, NC 28650

Summer gardening is all about tomatoes and peppers.  You may not realize that they are in the same plant family as potato and eggplant.  Come here some new tips and solutions to common gardening problems for these 4 favorite crops. Come find out why this program won the Best Adult Education Library program for the state of North Carolina. Take a look at the entire schedule here and find out how to become a certified Advanced Gardener.

New 4-H Clubs 

We have a few new 4-H clubs that have started this spring. Check-out these options:

* Montessori School 4-H Club - Middle school students at Montessori are closing-out the week with 4-H leadership learning and activities one Friday a month.  They will only meet a few times before school ends this year, but have big plans for the 2017-18 school year. Club Leaders: Julie and Scott Owens. 

* Wild Kids 4-H Club - This group blends inside and outside learning experiences with a club meeting on 2nd Monday afternoon of the month  and an all-day field trip to a state/county park  for nature and wildlife programs on the 4th Monday of the month. Club Leader: Nancy Reep.

* Bright Ideas 4-H Club - Bright Ideas is a partnership between Sherrills Ford Branch Library and 4-H. Children ages 9 and older are exploring electricity, engineering, and robotics during their monthly meeting on a Tuesday evening at the Library. Thanks to Sue and Kat Stuplin for helping them get started by leading the programs in February and March. Club Leader:  Sara Mofford, Library Staff. 

For additional information about these or other 4-H clubs contact Donna Mull at 828-465-8240 or
ServSafe Food Safety Manager's Certification Course
Tuesday, April 18, 2017 - 9:00 a.m. - 4:30 p.m.  and
 Tuesday, April 25, 2017 - 9:00 a.m. - 4:00 p.m.

The Agricultural Resource Center, 1175 S. Brady Ave., Newton, N.C.
For registration information visit  or call 828-465-8240

                           A Matter of Taste 

Are you a "supertaster?"  Do you prefer sweet or savory? In these sessions we will discuss how taste preferences can impact your health.

Thursday, April 20, 2017 at 9:45 a.m
Newton Senior Morning Out
First Presbyterian Church
701 N. Main Ave., Newton, NC 28658
Phone: 828-455-4133

Thursday, April 27, 2017 at 9:45 a.m.
Claremont Senior Morning Out
Center United Methodist Church
4945 Sherrills Ford Rd Catawba, NC 28609
Phone: 828-320-0434

       Contact the SMO program to reserve your space if you plan to attend.

  4-H Happening and Opportunities

* NC 4-H Health Summit - April 28-30 
The Health Summit is a weekend retreat at the Eastern 4-H Center  with with workshops on Nutrition, Physical Activity, Emotional Health, and Substance Use and team activities, such as Chopped! Thanks for grant funding the cost is only $35 and transportation is provided. Limited to 4-H members that have participated in a health-related program or activity with 4-H within the last 2 years. We still have space to accept ONE more Catawba County teen. Deadline to register is April 6. 

County Presentation Day - May 13
Presentations are a great way to build your skills in public speaking and communication. 4-H'ers ages 5-18 participate in presentations by giving a 5-12 minute talk (with visuals about a topic of their choice. Or you can try public speaking, science fair, 4-H Entertains, and/or Outdoor Grilling, which are all part of our Presentation Day Contest. If you plan to give a presentation or participate in any of these contests, register by emailing or calling Donna at or 828-465-8240 by May 5.  A presentation workshop will also be offered during Spring Break. Contact Donna for more details about the workshop or to set-up an appointment to get some one-on-one help. 

Farm to Fork Feast

Friday, June 23th
335 Main Ave SW
Hickory NC   28602
5:30 to 9:30 PM
The Farm to Fork Feast will be hosted at Market on Main in downtown Hickory and will be featuring a spectacular menu with Catawba County cultural themes sourced entirely from local farms, all prepared by Chef John Duke.

Enjoy cocktails on the patio with live music starting at 5:30 PM.  Multiple food options will be available throughout the restaurant for you to explore while you socialize with our local food community. 

Tickets are limited and are selling out fast.  

You can also purchase tickets by contacting the NC Cooperative Extension.  Call today to reserve your seats before they are gone. 828-465-8240
Did you miss the 
"So You Want to Start a Food Business Workshop?
             You will have another opportunity to attend in Iredell County . . .

 Wednesday, May 10, 2017
  10:00 a.m. - 12:00 p.m. 
Iredell County Agricultural Resource Center
444 Bristol Drive
Statesville, N.C. 28677

The program will feature a panel of representatives from agencies that regulate food businesses and others who can help you get your food business off to a good start.  Lunch will follow the program. For more information or to register, contact Ann Simmons at or call 704-873-0507.

Join Us at 4-H Camp
June 18-23
Ages 8-14

We are now accepting registration for 4-H Summer Camp. We will attend Betsy-Jeff Penn 4-H Center the week of June 18-23. Youth ages 8-14 may attend camp and it is not necessary to be 4-H to attend camp.Registration and details available on the camp flier that is posted on the Extension website at

The cost for camp is $435. 4-H'ers may also use scholarship money they have earned or apply for extra scholarship assistance, if you need help with the cost.  

Kiwanis Camp scholarships are available, thanks to continuing support from Hickory Kiwanis Club. Only a few days remaining to apply for Kiwanis Camp scholarships.  Contact Donna Mull to request a camp scholarship form and scholarship information. 
Winter Farmers Market

Nov 16, 2016 to April 12, 2017
Wednesdays 10 AM to 2 PM 

The Crossing at Hollar Mill
883 Highland Ave. SE
Hickory, NC

Closed dates: Dec 7, Jan 25, and Feb 1

Get ready Hickory!  A winter farmer's market is in the works so that we can enjoy fresh, local produce all year round.  If you love this idea be sure to stop by on Wednesday and purchase something.  We need your business to keep year round farmer's markets in Catawba County.

NCDA&CS offers organic certification cost-share assistance

The North Carolina Department of Agriculture & Consumer Services (NCDA & CS) is offering organic growers the opportunity to recoup up to $750 of their certification cost. Growers must have been certified between October 1, 2015 and September 30, 2016 and complete an application available at .

Visit the NCDA website to see more information about this cost share opportunity.

USDA Low Interest Loans For Storage Facilities

The Farm Storage Facility Loan Program provides low-interest financing so producers can build or upgrade permanent facilities to store commodities. Eligible commodities include grains, oilseeds, peanuts, pulse crops, hay, honey, renewable biomass commodities, fruits and vegetables. Eligible facility types include grain bins, hay barns and facilities for cold storage.

Visit the USDA Farm Storage Facility Loan website for more info.
NC State Gardening, Agriculture, and Pest Updates

You can sign up for the latest news on gardening, pest advisories, livestock, energy, and many others.  Check out the complete list of NC State News that you can subscribe to and get the latest research based info.  Be the first to know! 
Got To Be NC Agriculture

Visit the Got to Be NC website and see excellent resources for starting your own food business.

Visit the NC Growing Together website to see the latest newsletter, recent resources, and schedule of upcoming workshops, webinars, and meetings.

NC Farm Link

Take at look at this incredible website that helps connect farmland seekers with farmland owners. There is also an amazing list of resources for farmers.
Small Farm Grant and Loan Assistance

We will post various grant and loan opportunities that arise in this space of our monthly updates.  Simply click on the opportunity of interest for more information.

Equal Opportunity and Non-Discrimination statement

North Carolina State University and North Carolina A&T State University commit themselves to positive action to secure equaopportunity regardless of racecolor, religion, creed, national origin, sexage, disability, or veteran'status. In additionthe two Universities welcome all person without regard to sexual orientation.  North Carolina State University, North Carolina A&T State University, U.S. Department of Agriculture, and local governments cooperating.
Persons with disabilities and persons with limited English proficiency may request accommodations to participate by contacting Catawba County Extension Director, George Place, at (828) 465-8240 or or in person at the County Extension Office at least 14 days prior to the event.

Dr. George Place
Catawba County Cooperative Extension Director
Agricultural Resources Center, Newton, NC 28658