Due to the caronavirus crisis, the 2020 Northeast Ag Expo field day set for July 30 in Tyner, N.C. has been cancelled, but as it stands now the Blackland Farm Managers Tour scheduled for Aug. 5 near Pantego, N.C. is still on.
Pasquotank County Extension Agent Al Wood says the field day was canceled because the research plots could not be planted easily or within university guidelines. In addition, Wood says concern about social distancing and restrictions on people gathering prompted the move to cancel.
While this year’s field day is cancelled, the 2021 Northeast Ag Expo Field Day is scheduled for July 29, 2021 at Wingfield Farms in Tyner, N.C., the same location as the cancelled 2020 field day. Wood says Extension agents in northeastern North Carolina look forward to hosting the event next year.
In the meantime, Beaufort County Extension Agent Rod Gurganus says plans are for the 2020 Blackland Farm Mangers Tour set for Aug. 5 at the Coastal Gin located at 4851 Terra Ceia Rd. near Pantego to be held as originally planned The host farm for the tour is DHT Farms and the test plots are located on the farm just behind the gin.
Gurganus says an official announcement will be made shortly. He says this is a particularly special Blackland Farm Tour because it will be the 50th with special festivities planned to mark the occasion.
“We are still planning to have the 50th Annual Blackland Farm Managers Tour on August 5th, 2020. Obviously, we are going to have to wait and see what the ‘rules of engagement’ will be as we get closer to the tour date. Right now, we are planting plots and making arrangements as we normally would,” Gurganus wrote in an email to Southeast Farm Press.
“If events like this aren't allowed in early August, we will look at two options. The first would be to postpone the event a week or two if things were going to open up a week or two after our original date. The other would be to host some sort of ‘virtual’ tour. Neither is ideal, but we will adjust to whatever the situation dictates at that time,” Gurganus explains.
“Our biggest problem will be timing. There are plans that need to be made by certain dates, and if we are still uncertain as we approach those dates, that will force us to make some decisions that could cost us if the event ultimately doesn't happen. We will see what happens, but right now we are moving forward with planning for the event to be held on its scheduled date,” he notes.