Explore Alternative Farming Fuels

January 28th, 2014 3:03 PM

Farmers and others interested in using alternative fuels for transportation and equipment are invited to a program at 7 p.m. Thursday, Feb. 13, at the University of Maine Cooperative Extension Piscataquis County Office, 165 East Main St., Dover-Foxcroft.

The Maine Highlands Farmers and UMaine Extension are sponsoring the free program titled “Alternative Fuels Available to Farms and the Transportation Industry.” Tim Seymour, a sales representative at Darling’s, will talk about advantages and disadvantages of using alternative energy for transportation, as well as sources and supplies of alternative fuels and the future of fuels.

Following the program, the Maine Highlands Farmers will discuss upcoming group activities. For more information, or to request a disability accommodation, contact Extension Educator Donna Coffin, 207.564.3301, 800.287.1491 (in Maine) or donna.coffin@maine.edu.

Technology in Everyday Life discussion at Senior Network

January 13th, 2014 11:46 AM

Senior Network is an opportunity for seniors of any age to gather, get to know one another, share a meal, play a game or listen to a speaker … or just visit together. Senior Network is open to any senior of ANY AGE who lives in the Maine Highlands Region.

The use of Ipads, social networking and consumer use and safety tips will be the topic of discussion on Thursday, January 23.

Through the support of the Maine Community Foundation and the Piscataquis County Economic Development Council, Extension Educators Deb Killam and Jane Conroy with the University of Maine Cooperative Extension will be presenting information on basic social networks, set up for accounts and safety tips for consumer protection.

There will be iPads available as this will be hands on. Participants are encouraged to bring along their own computers, iPads as well.

So come for the social time starting at 11:00 followed by the Potluck lunch. The session Technology in Everyday Life will start at 12:15 p.m.  There is no cost to participate.  Senior Network meets in the community room of the Dover-Foxcroft Town Office, 48 Morton Avenue Suite A, Dover-Foxcroft, ME.

For more information contact Jane Conroy, University of Maine Cooperative Extension at 1-800-0274 or jconroy@maine.edu.

Invasive Forest Insect Outreach Volunteer Training

January 3rd, 2014 10:46 AM
Emerald Ash Borer Trap on an Ash tree

Emerald Ash Borer Trap on an Ash tree

The Maine Department of Agriculture, Conservation & Forestry, Forest Pest Survey Outreach and Survey Project are partnering with the University of Maine Cooperative Extension Piscataquis County Office to bring a unique training opportunity to Piscataquis County.  People – both urban and rural – are invited to participate in this free training to learn how to identify major forest pests that pose serious threats to the Maine Forest and survey for their presence in the field.

The training will focus on teaching people who work with trees and those who enjoy the outdoors to recognize signs of the presence of these specific pests: Emerald ash borer (EAB), Asian longhorned beetle (ALB), Brown spruce longhorned beetle (BSLB) and Hemlock woolly adelgid (HWA), their host trees, how to survey for them and how to report suspicious areas.

Participants will also learn how to effectively disseminate information to the public to help spread awareness. Early detection is critical and we have a much better chance of slowing down the spread of an infestation that will destroy our parks, backyards and woodland trees.

Forest Pest Outreach and Survey Project will provide materials for volunteers, loans of insects and sample tree damage displays for this outreach.  Pesticide Applicator’s and Licensed Forester’s credits may be applied.

Emerald Ash Borer Trap on an Ash tree

Emerald Ash Borer Trap on an Ash tree

The training session on Saturday, February 8th, 2014 (Snow Date February 15th) from 9:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m. will be held at University of Maine Cooperative Extension of Piscataquis County’s office, 165 East Main Street, Dover-Foxcroft.

For registration to this training, e-mail the following information to Lorraine Taft lorraine.taft@gmail.com or call (207) 832-6241: Name, Phone Number, E-mail Address, Affiliation (Organization or employer) or you may register with Ana Bonstedt at the UMaine Cooperative Extension Piscataquis Office ana.bonsted@maine.edu, (207) 564-3301 or 1-800-287-1491.

Volunteers complete the Master Gardener Course

January 3rd, 2014 10:25 AM

(DOVER-FOXCROFT)- Recently eleven folks finished their training in the University of Maine Cooperative Extension Piscataquis County 2013 Master Gardener Volunteer Program. They include from Piscataquis County Anita Perkins (Atkinson), Helen Griffith and Alyssa Gosselin (Dover-Foxcroft), from Penobscot County Terri Plummer (Bangor) and Sonja Birthisel (Orono) from Aroostook County Jill McIntyre (Presque Isle), Sue Caswell and Jacquie Morse (Houlton), Debra Durkin, and Mary Ellen Marucci (Fort Kent), and from Canada Robert Desrosiers (New Brunswick).

We would like also to thank active Certified Master Gardeners Janet Yelch-Weatherbee, Dotty Hadler and Karen Mass for sharing, their volunteer time experiences in our community with the group of new Master Gardeners.

This year’s program focused on vegetable and fruit production topics presented by Extension Educators, Extension Specialists, Maine Board of Pesticide Control Trainer, Penquis Beekeepers Association and Hannah Todd from Brick House Succulents (Etna).

To finish their Master Gardener Certification these folks will complete 40 hours of volunteer time helping others learn about sustainable gardening.  A variety of projects are being developed including, Garden Angel for a gardener in need, growing veggies for the Plant a Row for the Hungry Project, helping friends and neighbors with gardening questions, assisting in maintaining the gardens established at Dover-Foxcroft Town Office and Chamber of Commerce Building, and assisting at the Piscataquis Valley Fair.

To learn more about the Master Gardener program contact Ana Bonstedt, Home Horticulture Coordinator at the Piscataquis County Cooperative Extension Office, 165 East Main St., Dover-Foxcroft, ME   04426 phone 564-3301 or in Maine 1-800-287-1491 or email ana.bonstedt@maine.edu.

Eat Well Nutrition Workshops

November 15th, 2013 11:06 AM

A three-part series will take place in both Abbot and Brownville.  The workshop on December 3, 10, and 17, 2013 at 10:00 am will be held in Brownville at the Pleasant River Church located at 225 Main Road.  The workshop on December 4, 11, and 18, 2013 at 1:00 pm will be held in Abbot at the Town Hall located at 133 Main Road.

Participants will learn how to: prepare healthy meals and snacks, save money on groceries, improve cooking skills and keep foods safe to eat.  Participants in the Eat Well Nutrition Workshops will also receive: recipes and a cookbook, tips to help keep families active, and small incentives to help live a healthy lifestyle.  Registration is free to eligible.

For more information or to request a disability accommodation, contact Amanda at (207) 564-3301 or (800) 287-1491 (in Maine), TDD: 1-800-287-8957 or email cepsq@umext.maine.edu. You can also visit the events calendar at extension.umaine.edu.

The University of Maine is an equal opportunity/affirmative action institution.

Buying Local Meats Resources

November 14th, 2013 11:24 AM

Buying meat directly from local farmers is a way to support the local agriculture community, but it can be confusing. Below are resources to show how the different words used to describe how animals are raised and how meat is sold from local farms – natural, grass-fed, organic, dry-aged, pasture raised, free range, humane and prime.  Also, how much meat to expect when you buy a side or quarter, where you can purchase directly from farmers and how to care for the meat until it is used.

Beef and Pork Whole Animal Buying Guide PM2076 (Iowa State University Extension)

How Much Meat to Expect from a Carcass ASC-179 (University of Kentucky Cooperative Extension

Find Your Maine Farmer – Get Real Get Maine (Maine Department of Agriculture, Conservation & Forestry)

Maine  Meat Processing Facilities (Maine Department of Agriculture, Conservation & Forestry)

 

 

Consumer protection and technology talk at Senior Network

October 28th, 2013 4:40 PM

As part of the Senior Network program on Thursday, October 31st, Jane Conroy of the University of Maine Cooperative Extension will be doing a Consumer protection and technology talk. This session will be part of the potluck lunch offered in the community room at the Dover-Foxcroft Municipal building. It will start at 11:00 a.m.

The Senior Network with the leadership of University of Maine Cooperative Extension, Conroy will conduct an interest survey of seniors on the topic.  This information will be used to develop up-coming mini-sessions using Ipads and other technology. This project is made possible through the support of the Piscataquis County Fund of the Maine Community Foundation.

Senior Network is a chance for our area seniors to access community resources and provides social activities that promote independence and wellness. Please plan to join us. For more information, contact Jane Conroy at jconroy@maine.edu or 1-800-287-0274.

You Can Program Series: Buying Local Meat Information Available

October 28th, 2013 4:35 PM

Folks who attended the Buying Local Meat program held in Piscataquis County recently learned how to save money and get a quality product while buying meat directly from local farmers from Donna Coffin, University of Maine Extension Educator.

This was part of the YOU CAN series to help you sustain your family even in these tough times! The Piscataquis Valley Adult Education Cooperative and the University of Maine Cooperative Extension put together this series of workshops to give you the skills to get started in self-sufficiency.

Buying meat directly from local farmers is a way to support the local agriculture community, but it can be confusing. This program showed how the different words used to describe how animals are raised and how meat is sold from local farms – natural, grass-fed, organic, dry-aged, pasture raised, free range, humane and prime.  Also, how much meat to expect when you buy a side or quarter, where you can purchase directly from farmers and how to care for the meat until it is used was also discussed.

Donna Coffin is the University of Maine Cooperative Extension Educator in Piscataquis County for over 30 years. Her area of expertise includes sustainable agriculture and home horticulture. She received her Master of Science degree from the University of Maine in Animal Science in the area of animal nutrition.

If you missed this program but would like to receive the handouts distributed at the session contact Donna Coffin at 207-564-3301 or in Maine 1-800-287-1491 or donna.coffin@maine.edu

Coffin Talks to WABI about Farming Grant Program

October 3rd, 2013 1:35 PM

WABI (Channel 5) spoke with Donna Coffin, extension educator with the University of Maine Cooperative Extension, about the Sustainable Agriculture Research and Education Program (SARE) that awards grants to farmers. Coffin said the program allows farmers to test out ideas that could improve their business to help them determine if the idea could be profitable.

4-H National Youth Science Day

October 1st, 2013 9:13 AM

On Oct. 9, millions of young people in Maine and throughout the country will become scientists for the day during the sixth annual 4-H National Youth Science Day (NYSD). This event, which takes place in urban, suburban and rural communities all across the nation, seeks to spark an early youth interest and leadership in science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) careers in an effort keep America competitive in those fields.

This year, the National Science Experiment will be 4-H Maps & Apps. Designed by Colorado State University Extension, the activities will turn young people into geospatial thinkers as they design and map their ideal park, use GIS mapping to solve community problems and contribute data about their community to the United States Geological Survey.

University of Maine Cooperative Extension will host experiment sites across the state.  To learn about opportunities to participate in Piscataquis County, to ask for more information, or to request a disability accommodation, call 207.564-3301.

Currently, more than 5 million young people across the nation participate in 4-H STEM programming in topics as varied as robotics, agricultural science, rocketry, wind power, environmental science and alternative energy.

For more than 100 years, 4-H has been at the forefront of teaching young people about science, engineering technology and math (STEM). 4-H National Youth Science Day is the premier national rallying event for year-round 4-H STEM programming, bringing together youth, volunteers and educators from the nation’s 109 land grant colleges and universities to simultaneously complete the National Science Experiment.