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Local festival helps close rural/urban gap

Yvonne Gaul, pictured front and center, helps connect young children to agriculture through Ag Festival.

A few southwest Iowa businesses are partnering to help educate youth on agriculture.

The Shelby County Ag STEM Festival kicks off September 9, 2019 at the Shelby County Fairgrounds. Yvonne Gaul, Shelby County Catholic School teacher and event organizer, says the event, founded a couple years ago, helps connect students to agriculture.

“I knew agriculture was becoming less and less a part of the children’s lives. I wanted to get as many children as possible together to experience agriculture,” Mrs. Gaul said. 

Mrs. Gaul speaks to the local event, which will commence in less than two weeks.

“Our theme this year is ‘Agriculture: Linking the Past to the Future.’ Our ultimate goal is to let the kids understand the technology and engineering that has gotten agriculture to this point and where it’s headed,” Gaul said.

The festival will feature agricultural advancements, from crops to equipment.

“We have some people bringing in equipment from the early 1900’s, 40’s and 50’s, and present day. Out around that is going to be what’s coming in the future,” Gaul said.

Students grades Pre-K through sixth are encouraged to attend, along with their families. However, the event is free and open to the public. Additionally, a free meal will be provided by the Shelby County Cattlemen’s. 

The Shelby County Ag STEM Festival is hosted by Shelby County Catholic School, Shelby County Extension and Outreach and the Southwest Iowa STEM Hub.