FARMS Leadership | North State | Thursday, January 13, 2022
Location of Field Day Gorrill Ranch, Durham, CA & Larrabee Farms, Chico, CA
Field Day Host(s) and Mentors
Anjanette Shadley: Assistant General Manager, Western Canal Water District
Doyle Carter: Operations Manager, Richvale Irrigation District
Donnie Stinnett: Manager, Joint Union Water Districts Board
Brita Lundberg: Marketing Coordinator, Lundberg Family Farms
Eric Larrabee: Owner, Larrabee Farms
Lee Heringer: PCA, M&T Ranch
Nicole Landon: Owner, Buzz’s Bees
Theme Natural Resources
Summary of the Day
Students from Las Plumas and Chico High School attended the North State FARMS Leadership Field Day hosted by Western Canal Water District on Thursday January 13th. We met at Gorrill Ranch in Durham where we were greeted by Anjanette Shadley the Assistant General Manager at Western Canal Water District. She gave the students a brief introduction into the day and introduced our guest speakers Doyle Carter the Operations Manager at Richvale Irrigation District and Donnie Stinnett the Manager of Joint Water Districts Board. These men shared with the students about their education, career pathways as well as what each did at their respective water districts. It was fascinating to hear about the amount of technology that is used currently to be able to accurately monitor the amount of water that is being used as well as where it is going was very eye opening to the students. Listening to them speak it was very apparent that they both absolutely loved their jobs and were highly recommending to the students to follow their dreams and really find a passion in their future careers. We then had the honor of hearing from Brita Lundberg who is the Marketing Coordinator at Lundberg Family Farms. Her story was very unique and important for the students to hear because while she came from an “AG Family” who had a successful farming operation, her love and passion was for reading and literacy. It wasn’t until she graduated from college and lived in New York for several years before she realized that her passion, and love for storytelling and writing could be a big asset to her family farm. She shared about applying for a job at her family’s company at the time when they were rebranding. She was hired and is very happy to be able to help tell their family story to each and every consumer.
The second half of the day was focused on learning about the importance of managing water for the multiple beneficial uses of Food, Salmon, Communities, and Birds. We watched an educational video called Sharing Butte Creek that explained how the irrigation districts, rice farmers, and conservationists have all began working together to promote the health and growth of the salmon as well as giving the migratory waterfowl a place to rest and feed all while improving the soil health in rice fields. We had to opportunity to visit Larrabee Farms and hear from Eric Larrabee about his journey to coming back to the family farm as well as getting a first hand look at his rice fields during this time of year. Lee Heringer who is the PCA at M&T Ranch spoke to the students about his career as a PCA and what led him to choose this. The day was wrapped up sitting and listening to Nicole Landon the owner of Buzz’s Bees share about her and her husbands journey to becoming full time bee keepers and what exactly goes into raising Queen Bee’s. All in all the day was cram packed with exciting speakers who were a wealth of information as well as inspiring! We can’t thank all those who participated enough!
FARMS Leadership | Tehama, North State, and Kern| April 21, 2021
Field Day Host(s) and Mentors Andersen and Sons Shelling: Vina, CA Karen Gundersen, Grower Relations Manager Kristin Coley, Food Safety and Marketing Jennifer Williams, Marketing Director with California Walnut Board and Commission
Hands-On Kit Components Variety ID Worksheet, 5 different walnut varietals, In shell walnuts for cracking and grading, Kernel Defects information sheet. Small mallet for cracking nuts.
Theme Walnuts and Processing
Summary of the Day This field day hosted by Andersen and Sons Shelling was extra special with Jennifer Williams with the California Walnut Board and Commission joining us. She started off the day by introducing herself and the California Walnut Board to the students and explaining the important role they play for all those involved in producing and processing walnuts. We then jumped into watching a wonderful video about Andersen and Sons as a company which gave the students a good overview of what to expect as Karen Gundersen and Kristin Coley took us on a LIVE tour of the HUGE and expanding facility in Vina, CA. Students were able to see everything from walnuts being cracked and sorted, to grading, and finally to the packing line where local walnuts were going into retail packages with large retail names on them! So cool!!
Along the way, we discussed the many career opportunities that Andersen and Sons offers. Many of which require only a high school diploma, however if students have an interest in exploring high education they learned about careers that needed a certificate as well as those which need a 4 year degree to hold. To wrap up the day, Karen did a fun and interactive walnut variety identification activity using the hands on kits each student had received prior to the field day. Who knew there were so many different varieties of walnuts?! Students then were encouraged to use the guide they were given to crack and sort the in shell walnuts they received to see what kind of work goes into deciding what a farmer get paid for his walnuts.
We couldn’t be more thankful for partners like Andersen and Sons and the support we get from the Walnut Board to help educate our youth on the importance of not only where our food comes from, but how much work goes into getting it from the orchard to your trail mix or granola.
If you would like to join in on this field day…click HERE!
FARMS Leadership | Tehama & North State | March 16, 2021
Field Day Host(s) and Mentors Shasta College Agriculture – Dr. Audra Harl Horticulture – Leimone Waite Forestry/Natural Resources – Melissa Markee Heavy Equipment/Logging – John Livingston & Rick Boontjer Truck Driving – Clancy Mitchell Diesel Technology – Ray Nicholas & Ishmael Rivas Industrial Technology/Welding – Rick Osbrink & Jay Davis
Hands-On Kit Components Tomato Plant Seedling, Pot to transplant into, Soil
Theme College Exploration
Summary of the Day With the current pandemic in place, many students have not had the opportunity to get out and explore their college options for after they graduate. While this is especially important to juniors and seniors, the more exposure to higher education and what exactly that means the better chance our students have to make an educated decision on which path they plan to take when it’s time. Shasta College supplied a 2 hour information packed virtual field day where students “toured” 7 different departments from Agriculture to Forestry to Heavy Equipment, to Welding and everything in between. We then used our hands on kits which were graciously supplied by the Horticulture Department and the students were able to transplant their tomato seedling and learn about the root structure of a tomato compared to other plants as well as a little bit about the varieties they were planting. To wrap up the day Shasta Colleges Ag Leadership Students joined us LIVE to talk to the FARMS Leadership kids about life on campus and what being a college student really looked like. Finally all the departments that had been showcased at the beginning of the field day were available LIVE for the students to ask questions to. Thank you Shasta College for rocking it and giving a fabulous field day even on a virtual platform. Click HERE to watch the recorded field day!