Over the past year, the Polk County Farm Bureau (PCFB) and its members have worked to continue to develop and promote partnerships that will not only support our industry, but also contribute to the health of our community as a whole. From contributions to youth education through grants and scholarships to giving their time in the community, our members demonstrate the spirit of giving back — not just during the holiday season but throughout the year. In this issue, you will see just a sampling of those efforts.
Every year, the Polk County Farm Bureau and the Polk County Cattlemen’s Association come together to host the Legislative Appreciation Luncheon. With both seasoned and newly elected officials already at work in their roles as representatives for Polk County citizens, this event is a chance to sit down one-on-one with them as they establish issue priorities for the upcoming legislative session. This year’s event saw a record attendance from recent years by elected officials and other countywide decision makers. Many difficult decisions lie ahead and, as always, we appreciate their willingness to serve their fellow citizens.
As we look ahead to 2013, additional challenges loom on the horizon. With new labor law requirements, additional pest and disease threats, and ever-increasing costs of production, our goal will continue to be to provide our nation with quality and affordable food and fiber. We were fortunate to increase our membership numbers in 2012, and the voice of each member of our industry will be needed going forward. Please feel free to contact us as you see challenges or opportunities arise in your daily business activities.
We also need the help of our supporting industries and community partners if we are to continue to educate citizens about the importance of agriculture to our economy. Sponsorships from our industry partners is critical to these efforts. Sponsorship brochures with increased 2013 exposure opportunities for your business are now available for your consideration. Please call Carole McKenzie at (863) 533-0561, ext. 111, or e-mail her at firstname.lastname@example.org for more information.
Mark Your Calendars Now for These Important 2013 Events:
The 25th Annual Agri-Fest event will be held March 11–22. Each year, over 6,000 Polk County fourth-grade students have the opportunity to learn first-hand about agriculture production activities going on in their own community. To celebrate the 25th year of this event, the Agri-Fest Committee will host a banquet celebration the evening of Friday, March 8. This event will honor those who have served as organizers and volunteers over the years and is by invitation only. If you are a past supporter of this event and would like to attend, please contact the PCFB office.
We will hold our annual Harvest Celebration fundraiser at the Lake Eva Banquet Hall in Haines City on Friday, May 10. Last year’s was a sold-out event, so be sure to stay tuned for more information when tickets become available.
On behalf of the board of directors of the Polk County Farm Bureau, we wish all of you a Merry Christmas and a prosperous New Year!
column by LESLIE W. DUNSON III
Leslie W. Dunson III is president of the Polk County Farm Bureau.