Many Georgia farms offer various agritourism activities, such as you-pick strawberry, blueberry and peach experiences in the spring and summer. Others offer apple picking and corn mazes in the fall. Christmas tree farms welcome guests to select their family trees.
The Georgia Farm Bureau Certified Market program promotes almost 80 farms statewide that sell the crops they grow directly to consumers and/or offer agritourism experiences.
These farms are the focus of the group’s 2021 middle school essay and high school art contests that students can begin entering immediately with the help of their teachers or parents.
Teachers interested in having their students participate in the contests should contact the Polk County Farm Bureau for an official entry form and contest rules. Students or parents may also contact their local county Farm Bureau at 770-748-5641 for entry information. All entries must be received at the Polk County Farm Bureau office by Feb. 26, 2021.
Middle school students are asked to discuss how GFB Certified Farm Markets and agritourism in general benefit farmers and consumers as the topic for its annual essay contest.
The Polk County Farm Bureau encourages students to enter the contest, which is open to 6th, 7th and 8th grade students attending public or private schools and homeschooled children. Students may enter in the county in which they live or attend school but not both.
“By participating in the annual Farm Bureau Middle School Essay Contest, we hope students will learn how Georgia Farm Bureau’s Certified Farm Markets offer consumers a chance to visit farms and connect with the people who grow their food while learning how food is grown,” said Polk County Farm Bureau President James Casey.
Essays will be judged on how well the essay topic is addressed, adherence to standard English grammar rules, and use of primary and secondary sources for research pertaining to the essay topic referenced in the essay.
The winners of the Polk County Farm Bureau Essay Contest will receive $50, and $25 will be awarded to the second and third place winners.
The Polk County Farm Bureau winner will be entered in the Georgia Farm Bureau Third District competition. The district winner will receive a cash prize of $100. The 10 GFB district winners will compete for the state prize of $150 cash. Previous state winners are not eligible.
The 2021 Georgia Farm Bureau High School Art Contest is open to all public, private and homeschool students in 9th through 12th grades. Students entering the contest are asked to draw scenes depicting one of the almost 80 Georgia Farm Bureau Certified Markets located across the state.
“The purpose of the Farm Bureau Art Contest is to encourage students to creatively explore Georgia agriculture” said Polk County Farm Bureau President James Casey. “By asking the students to illustrate a Georgia Farm Bureau Certified Farm Market, we are giving the students an opportunity to visit a working farm and see agriculture in action.”
Students can visit www.gfb.ag/CertifiedFarmMarket to find a market to illustrate. Instead of visiting a CFM in person, students can select a market from the GFB CFM web page and visit the market’s website or social media account for inspiration. Search “Farm Monitor Certified Farm Market” on YouTube for video tours of several markets.
Finished artwork must be on 8.5-by-11-inch white paper and should be created in the colors black, white and gray. Contestants may use a variety of media to create their artwork including graphite, charcoal, pastel, chalk, colored pencil, pen-and-ink, ballpoint pen or mixed media appropriate for printing. Only one entry per person. Multiple entries will be disqualified. Previous state winners are not eligible. Drawings will be judged on how well the artwork represents modern agriculture found in Polk County or Georgia and artistic merit.
The winner of the Polk County Farm Bureau Art Contest will receive $50, and $25 will be awarded to the second and third place winners.
The Polk County Farm Bureau winner will be entered in the Georgia Farm Bureau Third District competition. The district winner will receive a cash prize of $100. The 10 GFB district winners will compete for the state prize of $250 cash. Previous state winners are not eligible.
The Georgia Farm Bureau Women’s Leadership Committee coordinates both contests. For more information, contact the Polk County Farm Bureau office at 770-748-5641.