What better way to honor our past than celebrate the roots of Alberta and the foundation of Wetaskiwin: agriculture.
The Wetaskiwin and District Heritage Museum and Parkland Fertilizers have joined together to help the community commemorate Canada’s Agriculture Day — Feb. 16.
“We’re putting on four events to celebrate agriculture,” said Karen Aberle, museum executive director and chief curator.
On Feb. 16 the museum will greet the day with the Ambassadors of Agriculture. The Ambassadors of Agriculture is an educational event and Q and A session for those wanting to learn more about the agriculture industry, says Aberle.
“This is actually our fourth session,” said Parkland Fertilizers marketing director Pamela Ganske.
Ganske explains many people are curious about the agriculture industry and where their food comes from, but with so many conflicting opinions the information can be intimidating.
“At this particular Ambassadors of Agriculture we’re going to feature a panel,” said Ganske. The panel will be composed of producers and industry professionals. Topics on the agenda include genetically modified verses organic, livestock care and antibiotics and hormones.
“And then as well just talking about the sustainability of farming,” she added.
Ganske says, according to Croplife Canada, in 1931 one-in-three Canadians lived on a farm, nowadays it is one-in-42. “There’s just lots of people who don’t have the opportunity to learn about agriculture.”
Ambassadors of Agriculture is about creating those connections between those who are and are not knowledgeable of the industry.
“We just really want to celebrate what agriculture is today,” said Ganske.
The event begins at 9:30 a.m. at the Heritage Museum.
That evening will take visitors and their taste buds on a tantalizing journey across Canada. Wetaskiwin’s Taste of Canada will feature sample of agricultural foods from across the county. It is an 18 years old and over, free event. However space is limited and those interested are asked to RSVP. It begins at 7 p.m.
“Each province and territory has its own special things they produce,” said Aberle.
Families in the Field will take place Feb. 18 at the Heritage Museum.
Aberle says there are 20 provincially recognized 100 year old farms within the County of Wetaskiwin.
“That afternoon is about inviting these families in,” said Aberle. Once again it is about hearing the stories of the farms that have been in their families for 100 years or more, and celebrating agriculture.
Unlike most holiday Mondays, when the museum locks its doors, February 20 will mark Family AGtivity Day at the Heritage Museum. Aberle states the day will feature a winnowing post, butter making and a pemmican cooking station. The festivities run from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m.
“We want to bring them in and make junior AGvocates of everybody,” said Aberle.
“We tried to include a little bit for everybody,” she added, referring to the four events scheduled to mark Canada’s Agriculture Day. “Lets celebrate food and lets celebrate agriculture.”