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County Commission Chair Bertha K. McElrath signs the county’s proclamation in honor of Farm-City Week. Photo by Christa Jennings
Special to the News
Christa Jennings contributed to this report
During Tuesday’s County Commission meeting, Commission Chair Bertha McElrath signed a proclamation for all citizens of Coosa County to join in a statewide effort to bring awareness to all farmers and to recognize the impact farmers have on our everyday lives.
Today, more people are living in urban areas than ever before, which has led to a greater desire to reconnect with the outdoors and nature. Especially after COVID-19, people want to spend time in rural areas, buy fresh produce, observe wildlife, and participate in agritourism.
Agritourism, which is tourism based in agriculture, fulfills the original mission of Farm-City. Established in 1955, the goal of Farm-City is to connect rural and urban people. With this in mind, Alabama’s theme for this year’s Farm-City Week is “Agritourism: Connecting Alabama Farms and Communities.”
Agritourism is often associated with finding the biggest pumpkin in the patch, picking the perfect Christmas tree at a farm, or selecting the ripest strawberry in the field.
However, fishing Alabama’s lakes, rivers and streams; visiting a Sweet Grown Alabama farm stand or market; or hiking along trails through forests located right here in Coosa County are all forms of agritourism.
Not all agritourism is for economic gain. Agritourism is seeing children’s faces light up with excitement when they drive by pastures full of horses or cattle. It’s seeing children become awestruck at the sight of tractors or combines as they glide across fields of cotton, corn, or hay.
In part, the county’s Farm-City proclamation reads, “Throughout the week, Americans recognize the hard work and achievements of the farmers, rural townspeople and city residents who make our nation’s agricultural production and distribution system so successful. …America’s farmers have provided nutritious food and fiber to sustain our people through many decades of progress. …American agriculture, and the many service industries that depend upon it, is a story of extraordinary labor creating extraordinary abundance.”
The proclamation further stated that the commission calls upon all Coosa County citizens to “join with citizens across this great state in recognizing the accomplishments of our productive farmers, who work dilligently to create abundance, wealth and strength for our county, state and nation.”
Revenue Commissioner Debra Lamberth, who is chair of Farm-City Week with the Coosa County Farmers Federation, came before the commission to present the proclamation and ask the county to sign it to observe the week and honor all farmers.
She mentioned that once again they would also be judging entries from local students for the Farm-City poster and essay contest.
Following Lamberth’s presentation, the commission unanimously approved for Chair McElrath to sign the proclamation.
Farm-City Week helps accomplish the goal of connecting urban people back to farming. What better time of year to make these connections than the week of Thanksgiving. Thank a farmer for their daily contributions to make our lives better.
For coverage of the remainder of Tuesday’s County Commission meeting, see next week’s edition.