For the last two years in early May, Delta Farm Press staff members have convened in the Clarksdale,Miss., office parking lot and walked — about 3 miles, give or take a hundred yards or so.
This year’s walk is May 8.
It’s a world-wide event promoted by our parent company Informa. So far this year, more than 3,500 colleagues across the company’s many branches, have signed up to Walk the World, collectively pledging to walk 27,000 km (it’s a British company, thus the metrics.) The company goal this year is to raise £250,000 for local charities. Not sure how that translates into dollars, but it seems like a lot.
In 2017, Farm Press raised $2,080. We bumped that up a bit last year, raising $2,190. We hope to beat that this year.
The gist of the effort is to raise money for local charities. Walkers, including me, ask for pledges to make certain we walk the course. This year, a work conflict means I may not be able to join the folks in Clarksdale, but I will walk, maybe in my own neighborhood. I will do at least a mile.
In the past, Farm Press charities have included the local Care Station (the Clarksdale food bank) and C.A.R.E.S. (Clarksdale Animal Rescue Effort and Shelter).
It’s a particularly important event this year. Farm Press walkers are dedicating the effort to the memory of our beloved colleague Hembree Brandon, who passed away in early March.
Hembree had requested that at his death memorials be sent to the Methodist Children’s Home of Mississippi, so that’s where the Farm Press Walk the World pledges will go this year.
It’s a fitting memorial to Hembree for whom children were precious, none more so than his grandchildren, but all deserving of care, love and opportunity.
Hembree Brandon was one of the most respected farm journalists in the country, and, as I have written before, was an intelligent, kind, gentle soul.
Last May, Hembree was one of the Clarksdale walkers, an easy chore since a brisk walk was a daily routine for him. As I recall, he finished well ahead of me. We will miss him more than words can convey this year.
So, we hope to raise a significant donation in Hembree’s memory for the Children’s Home, and we welcome your donations if you would like to participate and remember a farm journalist who touched the lives of farmers, ranchers, and others in the agriculture industry for more than 45 years.
You have several options. You can mail a check to Farm Press: P.O. 1420 Clarksdale, MS 38614. Make that to Ann King’s attention.
You can also donate online at: https://walktheworld.informa.com/fundraisers/annking.
Contact information for the children’s home is: www.mchms.org , P.O. Box 66, Clinton, MS 39060
Sometimes a walk is just a walk. This one means something.