Conference Agenda

Last Update: 6/14/18

Sunday, June 10


  Event Location
1:00 PM Conference Registration Begins Bridgeport Room
  NFRBMEA Pre-Conference Board Meeting Governor Room
1:00 - 5:00 pm Early Career Session #1 (for 0-3 year participants)
  —Tina Barrett & Mark Dikeman, Instructors
US Room
1:30 PM Entertainment: Chocolate World Hershey
This is a spouse ⁄ family activity to do on your own.
Go to either Hershey's Chocolate World or The Hershey Story to pre-purchase tickets.
Meet at Lobby
2:00 PM NAFBAS Board Meeting Lochiel Room
3:30 PM NFRBMEA Past Presidents' Meeting Governor Room
4:00 PM Joint NAFBAS ⁄ NFRBMEA Board Meeting Penn Harris Room
6:30 - 7:30 PM Evening Welcome Reception
  —Featuring a Salad Bar, Fajita Bar, Petite Desserts and a cash bar.
Carlisle Ballroom
  “Welcome to Harrisburg, PA”
  —Penny Brady, Hershey Harrisburg Visitors Bureau


Entertainment: Conrad and Burgess String Duo
  —Bluegrass, Country and Modern Music
8:00 PM Adjourn  

Monday, June 11


  Event Location
7:00 am Breakfast at Hotel Ballroom Center
  First-Timers Breakfast Meeting (Reserved Tables) Ballroom Center
7:30 am Registration Continues Bridgeport Room
8:30 am “Welcome to the 2018 Conference”
  —Bruce Fowler, NFRBMEA President & Mike Harer, NAFBAS President
Ballroom Left
8:45 am “Ag Update: Thinking Ahead on Farm Business”
  —Russell Redding, Pennsylvania Secretary of Agriculture
Ballroom Left
9:15 am  “Research and Extension in Pennsylvania”
  —Jeffrey Hyde, Interim Director, Penn State Extension
Ballroom Left
9:45 am  BREAK (Cold and Hot Refreshments) Flow - 2nd Floor
10:00 am  “Washington DC Update on Current Ag Issues”
  — John Block, U.S. Secretary of Agriculture, 1981-85
Ballroom Left
11:00 am Pennsylvania Farm Diversity Panel
  —Hannah Smith-Brubaker, Executive Director, PA Association for Sustainable Agriculture;
     Christian Herr, Executive Vice President, PennAg Industries Association;
     Leslie Zuck, Executive Director, Pennsylvania Certified Organic

Learn from several Pennsylvania non-profits who work with farmers in diverse formats, from sustainable agriculture, to large-scale agribusiness, to organic-certified farming. How these very diverse styles of farming work together to grow agriculture across the state.
Ballroom Left
NOON Luncheon at Hotel - Capital Favorite Ballroom Center
1:00 pm “Farm Viability Programs and Emerging Ag Business Assistance Networks”
  —Ela Chapin, Director, Vermont Farm & Forest Viability Program
     Mark Cannella, Farm Business Specialist, University of Vermont Extension

Farm Viability Programs – once a line item in the Farm Bill – support and enhance the economic vitality of farm and food businesses across all stages of growth and development through in-depth, one-on-one business and succession planning assistance.

Learn how these programs work to educate farmers and grow agricultural businesses. This general presentation will include funding mechanisms, network development in Vermont and New England, program development strategies and program delivery. A follow-up break out session on Wednesday will provide a deeper dive into Farm Viability business planning programs.

Ballroom Left
2:00 pm “Chesapeake Bay Watershed Initiative & Its Implications for Farmers”
  —Chris Houser, Assistant Director, Agronomy & Natural Resources Programs
Chris Houser will discuss the need and benefits of the Chesapeake Bay Watershed survey and the partnerships that were involved to design, promote, execute and verify the survey’s results. The results concluded that farmers have done a great deal to improve Pennsylvania water quality but many of the practices have not been counted in the Bay model.
Ballroom Left
2:45 pm BREAK (Cold and Hot Refreshments) Flow - 2nd Floor
3:00 pm “How Agricultural Incubators Can Surge Economic Development and Support Farming”
  —Robert Junk, Republic Food Enterprise Center
Carlisle Ballroom
4:00 pm “Marketing Channels and Financial Performance of Farms and Ranches”
  —Becca Jablonski, Food Systems Extension Economist, Colorado State Univ.
The number of farms and ranches selling through local and regional food markets has grown over the past several years, now totaling > 167,000. This session will present research using national data on how scale, commodity and participation in direct and intermediated marketing channels influence the expenditures and financial performance of farms and ranches.
5:00 pm Adjourn - Dinner and Evening on Your Own  

Tuesday, June 12 (Tour Day)


  Event Location
7:00 - 8:30 am Breakfast at Hotel Gettysburg Ballroom Center Center
8:15 am Board Buses for Tours Front Entrance of Hilton
  #1 Orchard Tour: McLeaf's Orchard, Penn State Fruit Research and Extension Center, Round Barn Orchard and Market  
  #2 Productivity Tour: Harley-Davidson factory, YorKitchen Incubator and Central Market, Penn State Southeast Research and Extension Center. (Children under 12 years old cannot attend this tour.)  
  #3 Dairy Tour: Kreider Dairy Farm (lunch included), Roots Country Market, and Brubaker Dairy Farm.  

4:00 pm

Buses Return to Hilton Harrisburg  
5:00 pm Family Outing (you will need to opt-in for the family outing)  
5:30 pm Picnic at Harrisburg City Island, a 10-minute scenic walk from the hotel. Hot dogs, hamburgers, salad, sides and drinks at Center Field Tent  
7:00 pm Seating for Penn FC Soccer, playing against Richmond Kickers  
9:00 pm Game ends; return to Hilton Harrisburg via walking bridge or Uber/taxi  

Wednesday, June 13


  Event Location
6:00 am Vendor Set-up. Vendors will be available to visit all day. Flow- 2nd floor
7:00 am Breakfast at Hotel- Traditional Buffet-style Center Ballroom
7:30 am Conference Information Desk (on-going information) Bridgeport Room
8:30 am “Supporting Mental Health and Wellbeing of Farmers During Difficult Economic Times”
   —Suzanne Pish, Educator, Michigan State University,
      “Social-Emotional Health and Wellbeing Across the Life Span”
Ballroom Left
9:30 am “Energy Opportunities for Agriculture - Diversity in PA”
   —Tom Richard, Director PSU E & Environment
      Dan Brockett, Extension Educator, Energy & Shale

Agriculture in the Commonwealth has changed greatly to maintain a competitive edge. Opportunities with natural gas development in rural areas, the use of economically marginal land for bioenergy production and new solar options have helped to add to the diversity of energy options on the farm.
Ballroom Left
10:30 am BREAK & VISIT VENDORS Flow- 2nd Floor
11:00 am “Current Issues in Tax Law and Regulations in Agriculture”
   —Dario Arezzo, Senior Tax Consultant, Farm Credit East
Ballroom Left
NOON Luncheon at Hotel- Italian Delight Ballroom Center
12:50 pm 2019 Conference Planners' Presentation Ballroom Left
1:00 pm “Business Succession Planning: How Do We Support Farm Transitions?”
   —John Berry, Penn State Extension Educator,
      Entrepreneurship & Community Vitality
Ballroom Left
1:45 - 2:00 PM BREAK & VISIT VENDORS Flow- Hallway, 2nd Floor
2:00 - 5:00 pm Early Career Session #2 (for 0-3 year participants) Lancaster-Gettysburg
2:00 - 3:00 pm Concurrent Educational Sessions, Round 1:  
  “Tools and Resources for Supporting Farmers in Stressful Times”
   —Presenter: Suzanne Pish
 US Room
  “Updates on Tax Implications for Farmers”
   —Presenter: Dario Arezzo
 Governor Room
  “Tools/Resources for Discussing Transitions, Exits and Succession with Your Farmers”
   —Presenter: John Berry
 Lochiel Room
3:00 - 4:00 pm Concurrent Educational Sessions, Round 2:  
  “Business Planning for Farm Viability”
   —Presenters: Ela Chapin & Mark Cannella
 US Room
  “Updates on Tax Implications for Farmers”
   —Presenter: Dario Arezzo
 Governor Room
  “Implications of Energy Opps on Agriculture”
   —Presenters: Dan Brocket, Joe Laughlin and Tom Richard
 Lochiel Room
4:00 pm NAFBAS Committee Meetings US Room
  NFRBMEA Business Meeting Governor Room
6:00 PM Adjourn- Dinner and Evening On Your Own for Downtown Harrisburg Sightseeing  

Thursday, June 14


  Event Location
7:00 - 8:30 am Storytelling Breakfast Carlisle
8:30 am Closing Remarks  
9:00 am Adjourn Conference  
9:00 - 11:00 am NFRBMEA Post-Conference Meeting Lochiel