Rural Life Conference, March 4, Offers Eight Workshops

Carol Sanders | School of Agriculture, Fisheries and Human Sciences

RLC 2016 graphicWhen the 60th annual Rural Life Conference gets underway March 4 at the Isaac S. Hathaway-John M. Howard Fine Arts Center at the University of Arkansas at Pine Bluff (UAPB), attendees will have a choice of eight workshops reflecting the conference theme, “Sustainable, Healthy and Profitable Rural Development.”

Workshops begin at 10:15 a.m. and are an hour long with a 15 minute break between each session. One workshop, Soil and Land Improvements Using Conservation Practices focuses on the Environmental Quality Incentives Program (EQIP), the Conservation Stewardship Program (CSP) and soil health. Another workshop, Managing Beef Cattle for Profitability, focuses on production tips for cow/calf operations and pasture management. These two workshops will be repeated.

Workshops on finances include Financial Planning for Profit, which focuses on USDA loans and developing profitable farm plans, and Estate/Succession Planning, which covers estate planning to avoid heir property problems and developing a successful family estate plan.

Those using timber as an investment and seeking to protect it may be interested in the Forestry EQIP Practices, Timber Theft and Other Woodland Menaces workshop. The Sustainable Apparel and Interior Textiles workshop will teach consumers how to reduce the environmental impact of apparel and home textiles through selection, use, care and repair.

The Families First – Nutrition, Education and Wellness System (FF-NEWS) workshop covers how UAPB is helping low-income families eat healthier diets to reduce obesity and nutrition-related diseases through FF-NEWS.

The Engagement of Farm Pond Owners and High School Students in Aquaculture and Fisheries workshop focuses on how Extension specialists are teaching farm pond owners the basics of fisheries management and how specialists are helping high school instructors with aquaculture basics.

The Rural Life Conference gets underway with registration at 7:30 a.m. The opening session begins at 8:45 a.m. The conference also features a poster session and exhibits by governmental and community agencies.

Lunch will be at the Pine Bluff Convention Center. The conference is sponsored by the School of Agriculture, Fisheries and Human Sciences.

Preregistration is requested of everyone even though the conference is free to producers, homemakers and retirees. The cost for professionals and agency personnel is $50; after Feb. 19, it is $75. To preregister or for more information, contact Delila Thurman at (870) 575-8968 or


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