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It’s a wrap!

June 4, 2016
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The 2016 MG State Conference is over and it was a roaring success!  We were so blessed by the weather, and it seemed we flipped a switch when we needed it to stop raining and it did!  This morning it was  raining when I woke up, but was only misting when I loaded the car.  We still had great attendance for our final morning program.  Folks were gathering early and eager to learn and visit with our keynote speaker Allen Owings.allen owings (2) allen owings (3)  Our volunteers were still smiling!mg sat20161This was a wonderful group of volunteers to work with and their can-do attitude made for a pleasant experience for volunteers and attendees alike.  I will miss my monthly planning trips with this group of volunteers.

After a quick breakfast, LSU’s Allen Owings kicked us off with an excellent presentation on Great Plants for the South. allen owings (1)

Then we had a visit from Myrtie May herself mg sat20164 who shared some history of Eureka Springs.

Then we celebrated our host volunteers and our award winners. We tried something new this year. Instead of a Powerpoint presentation, we listed all the winners and their story in the program, put a ribbon on their name tag and had posters hanging on the wall to announce them to all attendees when they arrived. Today we had them stand and be honored.  Congratulations to MG of the Year – Kathy Graber from Greene Countyawards 2016 mg of the year greene county1 and Susan Randolph from River Valley MGs. awards mg of the year river valley (1)

Rookies of the Year went to Bonnie Hamilton from Greene County  awards 2016 rookie greene.1 and Debra Stansel from Faulkner Countyawards2016 rookie faulkner2

County Agent of the Year is Allen Bates from Garland County. awards 2016 county agent of the year1

MG Friend of MG was John Tinsley from Union County.award friend of union (1) and Southwest Arkansas Electric Cooperative Corporation C. Wayne Whitaker, President, and CEO and Rhonda Morrow, Administrative Assistant – Miller County, Red Dirt Master Gardeners.

Project of the  Year went to Greene County Fairgrounds – Chair – Connie Whitman awards2016 project of the year greene county.1 and Washington County Extension Service Grounds  – Chairs – Elaine Blowers, Judy Henbest and Dian Holmes awards 2016 project washington1

Newsletters of the Year went to Columbia County Master Gardener Thymes –  Julie Goin, Editor  and the Weeder’s Digest – Craighead County – Diane Sandberg, Editor

Our new award was Excellence in Education and it went to 4-H Young Master Gardeners –Chairs – Betty Beazley and Judy Manning from St. Francis County. award 2016 education st francis county and to Soil Detectives, Chairs – Gloria McIntosh and Ginny Wiseman from Washington County. award 2016mg education award washington county.2 

We also had 2 out of 3 Janet B. Carson Scholarship recipients who were able to attend.   Shelby Hartzell from Pope County is actually a MG who took the first Saturday statewide MG training 3 years ago.  scholarship winner shelby (1) and Alexx Ivey from Columbia County has a grandmother who was an Arkansas Master Gardener. scholarship winner alexx (1) It is a fabulous opportunity for Master Gardeners to sponsor the next generation of horticulturists.

We ended with the torch passing to Pulaski County who will be hosting the 2017 MG Conference in Little Rock at the Doubletree Hotel May 21-23.mg sat20165 MG Conference 2017

We had the conference locked and loaded in record time!  I met up with friends for lunch before leaving town, then stopped at some of my favorite places on the way home, so I made it home by 6 and had unloaded and walked the garden. We got ample rain while I was gone so the gardens look  great.  Tomorrow may be a day of rest!

One Comment leave one →
  1. Sandra bradberry permalink
    June 5, 2016 6:27 am

    Great job and liked the awards system this year

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