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Serving: WI

Coronavirus is creating tough decisions

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STAYING SAFE: This year’s Wisconsin Master Agriculturist Awards Program will be rescheduled this June or August, when the coronavirus is no longer a threat.
The 2020 Master Agriculturist Awards Program is postponed due to the virus.

On March 13, after much discussion, we decided to postpone the 2020 Master Agriculturist Awards Program scheduled for April 1 in Oshkosh, Wis. The decision was made to keep everyone planning to attend the event safe and healthy. The awards program will be rescheduled, hopefully in June, if the coronavirus is no longer a threat.

I called the 2020 Master Agriculturists and assured them we will hold this program when it is safe. La Sure’s Banquet Hall and Hawthorn Suites in Oshkosh are grateful that we are postponing, not canceling, the event.

Highlight of the year

The Master Agriculturist Awards Program is always the highlight of my year. I look forward to the event all year. I will be talking with the 2020 Master Agriculturists in the next few weeks to pick a date to hold the program in mid-to-late June. If it turns out that we are still dealing with the coronavirus into June, we will reschedule the event in mid-August. I think everyone is grateful we will still hold the program when we will all be safe. After weeks of social distancing, those planning to attend the awards program will have double the reason to celebrate getting together this year.

The organizers of the Master Farmer awards programs at my sister publications — Prairie Farmer in Illinois and Wallaces Farmer in Iowa — made the same decision to postpone their awards programs as well. They were both originally scheduled during the last two weeks of March.

I don’t think anyone really knows how long the coronavirus will last, so I plan to be flexible about rescheduling. I will send out invitations a month before we hold the program to all those whom we sent invitations to on March 1 for the April 1 event.

I know there are weddings, sports events, church activities and family gatherings many of you have missed or will miss in the next several weeks due to the coronavirus. While these are tough decisions to make or live with it, it will hopefully keep you, your loved ones and your communities safe.

While my husband and I have not seen our four sons and daughters-in-law since March 8, we are talking and texting them more often than we normally do. They are checking up on us more and we are doing the same. In the next several weeks, we will miss celebrating a couple of birthdays, Palm Sunday and Easter, but when it’s safe again, I plan to cook for three days and have a big party.

I hope everyone will stay safe and stay healthy.

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