More than 300 Grade 3 students will try their hands at being farmers for a day at the Cole Harbour Heritage Farm today, Sept. 25 and Wednesday, Sept. 26. Farmer for a Day gives students from elementary schools in Halifax Regional Municipality a chance to explore modern-day farming through activities and interaction with the farm’s animals. “Farmer for a Day supports the school curriculum by giving young students a hands-on experience that will help shape how they view agriculture as they grow older,” said Agriculture Minister John MacDonell. “It’s one of many ways that we help support Nova Scotia’s vibrant agriculture industry.” Students will learn about how food is produced and how far it travels from the farm to the plate. Other activities include seeing chicken eggs incubating, learning about clean water and making wheat-seed bracelets they can watch germinate in the classroom. “It is so important for farmers to share our experiences and promote our industry,” said Beth Densmore, president of the Nova Scotia Federation of Agriculture. “Having this opportunity to connect with students is a great way to share our message with our future consumers on the importance of agriculture.” The Cole Harbour Heritage Farm Museum is owned and operated by the Cole Harbour Rural Heritage Society. The farm has been in operation continuously for more than 200 years. “The farm is dedicated to preserving and interpreting Cole Harbour’s agricultural history, while developing an understanding of plants, animals and farming today,” said Janice Kirkbright, the society’s executive director. “Its proximity to the urban core keeps a rural connection on the city’s doorstep.” The event is supported by the federal and provincial governments, the Nova Scotia Federation of Agriculture, and affiliated commodity groups. The aim is to raise awareness about agriculture and interest in agri-food careers.
It’s opening day at the Fort Erie race track, and just a few months ago no one thought this day would arrive. But at the last minute the province came up with money for the track. Hours before post time, the horses and everyone else in the backstretch, were getting ready for day one at the track.“It’s been threatened the last couple of years, but you know, we’re back. We’re here,” says horse owner Julie Ayres. Ayres and Shawn Ridout kept seven race horses over the winter, costing about $20,000.It was just a few days ago, on Friday, that the Ontario Racing Commission approved the 37 race dates and signed the government contract for $7.9 million.It may not seem like a lot when you consider last year there were 43 race dates, but it could have been worse. Over the winter everyone thought the Fort Erierace track was going to shut down.Peter Martin delivers feed to the horses and he’s seen the number decline from 800 a few years ago to less than 300 today.“Our volume in feed has gone from close to nine tons three times a week to close to two tons twice a week.”To keep up the number of horses, you need more people betting on live racing.On opening day they had a pretty good crowd, and track officials are hoping it stays this way until the end of September.