By Timothy Collins, Chair, Kern County Young Farmers & Ranchers
While the rain and snow continue to blanket Kern County, the Young Farmers & Ranchers caught a break on March 11th for our third annual clay shoot fundraiser. With the clouds breaking up that morning and the warmer weather brought in by a storm the day before, it made for a beautiful day on the range. It takes a good team to make this kind of event happen; so, I would like to thank our YF&R executive team as well as the extra volunteers that helped the day of our shoot. We were able to get a great turnout despite the chance of rain as well as the current difficult environment in much of the ag industry. Congratulations to Matt Pandol Jr’s team for taking first place!
We want to give a big thank you to everyone who came out and shot and to the individuals and companies who sponsored the event. You made this year another success for the club. We are now looking forward to being able to fund our Ag Grants and our new College Ag Scholarship as well as our meetings and other events throughout the year. If you missed it this year, we are already planning next year’s shoot so be on the lookout to sign up early. We would also like to thank 5 Dogs for hosting us and running the shoot. I appreciated that they set up the course with easier clays to hit than last year, even if I still missed more than I would like to admit.
Back in late February before the clay shoot, we had our monthly meeting at the Tlo Wines tasting room in downtown Bakersfield. They hosted a special California ag trivia night for us and as groups, we answered questions ranging from what our state fabric is to what California’s top ag commodity is. To the surprise of all but one member of my group (whom we should have trusted), it was not almonds in the top spot but rather dairy products by a significant margin. Regardless of the trivia results, we all enjoyed the night and were able to build relationships with newer attendees.
I’ve written recently about how I love the community and people here in Bakersfield, but there is more to love than that. It has been one of those winters where when I look out the window and see the snow on the mountains around town and the green grass and wildflowers everywhere it makes me wonder why anyone would want to live anywhere else. Indeed, if someone from out of state came to town for an interview, it would be hard to say no to Bakersfield, there’s even water in the river. We should be thankful for these times of beauty here that we have been given because they often do not last for long. Get outside, get involved, and enjoy Kern County!