Conservation district gives urban ag update: Bus trip planned to Pittsburgh on June 28

Last year, the Blair County Conservation District received a $46,000 grant to start an urban ag program within the county.

The purpose of this program is to promote the local food movement while improving upon Blair County’s conservation efforts.

By implementing agriculture into urbanized areas through use of empty lots and rooftops, the program will be fulfilling its mission to protect natural resource while helping people grow their own food.

Thanks to a partnership with the Healthy Blair County Coalition, the Blair County Urban Ag program would not have been able to accomplish so much this past year.

The Blair County Urban Ag Program launched forward with a bus tour to Tudek Park Community Gardens in State College and Providence Presbyter-ian Church’s Community Garden on Broad Avenue, Altoona.

The program also hosted many workshops, meetings and programs to help grow and promote urban agriculture, including an Urban Ag Symposium and a Backyard Poultry workshop.

Through these events, the program has made connections with the Healthy Blair County Coalition, Grow Pittsburgh, Tyrone Milling, Penn State Exten-sion, Blair County’s muni-cipalities and many more.

This past year with support from many partners and supportive community members, the program was able to provide fun-filled and educational events.

The program will hold three events this summer, including an Indoor Farming Workshop, which was held on Monday at the Logan Valley Mall. This workshop included information on hydroponics, aquaponics, Bokashi composting and microgreens.

A second bus tour is planned on June 28 to visit urban ag sites in Pitts-burgh. The tour will include visits to Phipps Conservatory, Homewood YMCA’s backyard garden program, Braddock Farms and Allegheny County Rooftop Garden. Attendees will learn different aspects of urban ag and how Pittsburgh makes their urban setting a little more green. To attend the tour is $30, which includes lunch and the Phipps tour.

The program will end the summer with a celebration of the Blair County Urban Ag Program’s one-year anniversary.

This celebration is a farm-to-fork event that will celebrate all things local. From local farm fresh food to local bands, area residents are invited to come out and celebrate the Blair County Urban Ag Program.

More details will be announced.