Farm, city meet at New Ulm Civic Center

NEW ULM–With spring on the way, local farmers are anxious to get back in the field, but first they need to head back to the convention hall.

The 33rd Annual Farm/City Ag Show began Friday at the New Ulm Civic Center. As with the past few years, the Ag Show is a two-day event, running Friday and ending Saturday at 5 p.m.

Nearly 80 exhibitors are attending this year’s show. Many of the businesses showcased on the convention floor were directly related to farming, but for every equipment supplier’s and seed dealer’s booth, there is a banking or financial investment booth. With the ag industry playing a major role in the local economy, nearly all New Ulm businesses are impacted. Communications companies such as New Ulm Telecom provide not only internet/phone service but security alert systems for farms. City and county departments are also represented at the show. The New Ulm Fire Department has a fire safety booth, and Brown County Public Health has staff on site to perform blood pressure checks.

This year, weather became an unofficial theme at the Ag Show. With this winter season reaching record low temperatures, many exhibits demonstrated methods of combating the cold. Waste Oil Furnaces and Today’s Fireplace attracted a steady crowd.

Diane Schaefer of Searles Well Drilling commented the company had been busy with digging up septic systems and pipes that had busted due to the cold. Schaefer predicted even more breaks would occur during the spring thaw. To combat the problem, the company is trying to educate the public on how to properly thaw frozen pipes.

Another area hit hard by the cold weather is the propane industry. In response, the Ag Show hosted a seminar on the future of propane, presented by Doug Lund of United Farmers Cooperative.

Additional Friday seminars included Estate Planning 101 with Steve Fanta of The Legal Professionals and a seminar on early season projects for ambitious gardeners and plant propagation through seed starting and woody cuttings, by U of M Educator and Master Gardener Coordinator Christian Lilienthal.

The seminars continue on Saturday. An SBA Livestock Facility Loans presentation by Randy Schroeder of Frandsen Bank will be held at 11 a.m. William Sommerness of The Legal Professionals holds a second Estate Planning 101 seminar at 1 p.m.

The Ag Show is free and open to the public. New Ulm residents are invited to support local farm businesses. Proceeds from the show will help the Farm-City Hub club fund programs such as Future Farmers of America, 4-H and scholarships for area youth.

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