If you’ve ever wanted to shoot the breeze with some of the region’s farmers, stop by the Spokane Convention Center this week.
The Ag Expo and Pacific Northwest Farm Forum begins Tuesday and is expected to bring more than 5,000 growers and others in the agricultural industry to Spokane.
“I wish a lot of urban people would come to the show and just talk to the farmers. Because they’re the ones who are growing their food,” said Myrna O’Leary, the show’s longtime director.
The show’s a good chance to learn about the diversity in the Inland Northwest’s agricultural industry, she said.
“Sunflowers have grown in popularity in the last five years. And so have garbanzo beans, with everybody loving hummus,” O’Leary said. “People need to come and learn more about their farmers.”
The show also provides resources for would-be farmers. People who own 2 to 80 acres and want to raise crops or livestock are among a fast-growing group of attendees.
“They want to buy critters, or they have noxious weeds and need to know how to get rid of them,” O’Leary said. “Or they need to know the best kind of crops to grow on 5 acres.”
A ticket to the three-day show costs $12 and includes free off-site parking at the Spokane Arena with shuttle service. Discounted tickets are available at North 40 Outfitters for $8.
Art Douglas, professor emeritius at Creighton University’s Atmospheric Sciences Department, will give a talk on 2018 weather conditions in the Pacific Northwest, including the impact of climate change. The talk begins at 9 a.m. Tuesday.
The show also features seminars on the use of drones in agriculture, estate planning for family farms and how recent federal tax reform will affect farmers.