The California Hall of Fame will induct a late advocate for farmworkers, along with icons from sports, literature and other fields.
Inductee Fred Ross helped farmworkers from the Dust Bowl in the 1930s. He later mentored Cesar Chavez as the United Farm Workers emerged as a voice for mostly Latino laborers.
Gov. Jerry Brown and First Lady Anne Brown will preside over the Oct. 1 ceremony at the California Museum in Sacramento. Among the other inductees are football’s Joe Montana, basketball’s Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, filmmaker Francis Ford Coppola and author Joan Didion.
Speaking of the Dust Bowl, today is the end of Banned Books Week. It brought up memories of efforts to suppress “The Grapes of Wrath,” the John Steinbeck novel about the migrants’ plight in the San Joaquin Valley.
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To mark the occasion, state Food and Agriculture Secretary Karen Ross read from the book during an event at the California State Library. A video is at the Planting Seeds Blog on her department’s website, www.cdfa.ca.gov. Several of Brown’s other Cabinet members read from other works.
Elsewhere on the Farm Beat – A meeting Monday will help guide efforts to get federal drought aid to farmers in Stanislaus County.
The East Stanislaus Resource Conservation District is seeking public input on how to use money for water conservation and other efforts on behalf of crop and livestock producers. The federal Natural Resources Conservation Service provided $25 million to California through its Drought Response Initiative.
The meeting will be at 1:30 p.m. in Building H/I at the Stanislaus County Agricultural Center, 3800 Cornucopia Way, off Crows Landing Road west of Ceres. For more information, call Trina Walley at (209) 491-9320, ext. 139.
Another program aimed at drought-stressed farmers will launch its second round of applications Monday.
The California Department of Food and Agriculture offers up to $150,000 each for farmers taking part in the State Water Efficiency and Enhancement Program. It is part of a drought package signed by the governor earlier this year.
More information is at www.cdfa.ca.gov/EnvironmentalStewardship.
• Modesto once again will host a statewide conference on how to fertilize farms without polluting water or air.
The Fertilizer Research and Education Program will hold its 22nd annual gathering Oct. 29-30 at the DoubleTree Hotel. Experts from industry, academia and other areas will talk about practices that promote crop growth while protecting the environment.
The event is sponsored by the Western Plant Health Association, a trade group, and the California Department of Food and Agriculture. Registration and other information is at www.healthyplants.org.