The 23rd GrassWorks Grazing Conference will be held in Wisconsin Dells, Jan. 15-17, 2015. This event is for producers of all kinds of livestock who have a desire to learn how to improve their land, increase forage production and graze as many months as possible during the year. Topics range from cattle handling basics, dairy management on grass, soil fertility and animal care in the pasture.

This year’s conference will be held at the Chula Vista Resort in Wisconsin Dells and will feature more then 25 sessions and a trade show with more than 40 exhibitors. Attendees will have the opportunity to hear thought-provoking and inspiring speakers. In keeping with grass-based leadership in local and sustainable farming, the meals offered at the conference consist almost entirely of season, local, grass-fed selections from the best in graziers from around the region.

Four well-respected speakers will be featured at the 2015 conference. Joshua Dukart, a certified holistic manager from North Dakota, will talk about Thinking Regeneratively and how conservation is not enough. He will speak Friday, Jan. 16, at 8 a.m.

Inga Witscher, host of the Wisconsin Public Television show "Around the Farm Table," will entertain the crowd with the stories on her farm and how she is inspired by the graziers of the Midwest. She will speak Friday, Jan, 16, at 6 p.m.

Mark Shepard, from Forest Agriculture Enterprises and New Forest Farm, will speak on Restoration Agriculture and Livestock. He will speak Saturday, Jan. 17, at 8 a.m.

Joel Kuehnhold, from Lonely Oak Farm and ag instructor at Lincoln High School in Wisconsin Rapids, will discuss the "oops" and “a-has” while farming the first few years. He will speak Saturday, Jan. 17, at 11 a.m.

Special guest speaker this year is Curt Pate with Curt Pate Stockmanship. He has a wealth of knowledge in stockmanship and humane animal handling. He will be speaking at two breakout sessions, both on Saturday, Jan. 17.

Thursday, Jan. 15, will have a dairy focus and GrassWorks is working with the Dairy Grazing Apprenticeship Program to roll out a lineup of speakers to help out dairy graziers.

Conference registration includes workshops, general sessions, admission to the exhibit hall and evening entertainment, as well as dinners, lunches and snacks. Online registration is available. For information such as registration costs, volunteering, exhibiting and other opportunities or to register online, visit the GrassWorks website (www.grassworks.org).

To request a conference flyer with complete information, contact Heather Flashinski at 715-289-4896 or grassheather@hotmail.com, or continue to check out the website www.grassworks.org. The conference is listed under the events tab.

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Vernon County Broadcaster editor

Angie Cina is editor of the Vernon County Broadcaster. Contact her at 608-637-5616.

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