Schoolchildren can learn about sheep and make models of them as part of the run-up to the Stanislaus County Fair. The fair is providing a limited number of kits that help teachers educate preschoolers to sixth-graders about agriculture in general and sheep in particular. The kits include wooden bases on which each class can craft its own animal. They will be displayed and compete for cash prizes at the fair, July 25 to Aug. 3 in Turlock. The Sharing Ag in the Classroom Program is sponsored by Hilmar Cheese. Teachers can register or get more information by calling 668-1333.
People interested in producing goat milk can attend a May 15 workshop in Merced. The event will feature experts on breeding, nutrition, milk quality and other topics involving the animals. Goats are a tiny niche compared with the huge cow milk industry in the San Joaquin Valley, but experts say they can be profitable on small parcels. The workshop will be from 8:15 a.m. to 3:45 p.m. at the University of California Cooperative Extension, 2145 W. Wardrobe Ave. The cost is $15 in advance or $25 at the door. For more information, contact Deborah Giraud at 707-445-7351 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
The Central California Dairy Herd Improvement Association presented nine awards for top milk producers in Stanislaus and Merced counties in 2007:
Milk Quality Team Award, for Holstein herds with 385 or fewer cows: Den K Holsteins of Los Banos, owned by Denise and Kristen Arieas
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Yosemite Farm Credit Award, 386 to 586 Holsteins: Pedretti Ranches of El Nido, owned by Gino Pedretti
AgriTech Award, 587 to 740 Holsteins: Foster Farms, Dairy No. 2, Hickman
DHI-Provo Award, 741 to 1,197 Holsteins: Migliazzo & Sons Dairy of Merced, owned by Dino and David Migliazzo
A.L. Gilbert & Co. Award, 1,198 or more Holsteins: Double D Dairy of Ceres, owned by Harold and Don Agresti
Escalon Portable Welding Award, for lifetime production by a single Holstein: Sierra Vista Livestock of Denair, owned by Jim Burroughs
American AgCredit Award, for non-Holstein herds of 600 or fewer cows: Wickstrom Bros. Jersey Dairy of Hilmar, owned by Mike and Scott Wickstrom
Associated Feeds Award, for larger non-Holstein herds: Jade Jerseys of Hilmar, owned by Grant Ahlem
Ivan Overkamper Lifetime Award, for total production by a single non-Holstein cow: D&E Jerseys of Hilmar, owned by Donnie Sherman
The group also presented scholarships to Caitlyn Morehart, Sarah Fiorini and Daniel Sousa. All three study dairy science at Modesto Junior College.
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