8th Annual City to Country Tour is Sept. 23

The University of Minnesota Extension Service-Scott County will host its 8th annual City to County Tour Saturday, Sept. 23. This drive-it-yourself tour is hosted by the University of Minnesota Extension Service - Scott County. This tour helps demonstrate the importance of agriculture and the rural character of Scott County. Last year, 200 people attended the tour. As the population in Scott County continues to grow, the Extension Service anticipates more participants coming from Scott County and the surrounding Metro area.

The tour hours are 11 a.m.-4 p.m.

Each site leaves a positive, lasting impression on visitors about agriculture in Scott County and Minnesota through demonstrations, hands-on activities and educational displays.

There is a fee for the tour for those age 6 and older. A pass provides admission to three of the sites, while admission to the fourth, Havlicek's Veseli Vrsek Orchard, is free.

Advance tour passes can be purchased at a discount at the Scott County Extension office, located on the Scott County Fairgrounds near Jordan. For more information call the Scott County Extension office at 952-492-5410.

This year's tour has four stops:

• RichView Dairy Farm, owned by Rich & Karen Lambrecht, 24285 Aberdeen Ave, Belle Plaine

RichView Dairy Farm is celebrating its 20th year in 2006. Rich and Karen, along with their three children (Rebecca, Makayla and Micheal) live on the fifth generation farmstead which consists of 160 acres of corn, soybeans and alfalfa. They milk approximately 100 Holstein cows in a unique parlor system - called a step-up parlor. Each cow produces approximately 80 pounds of milk every day-almost 10 gallons. There will be milking demonstrations at the farm at noon, 2 p.m. and 4 p.m. You will get to see the feed being mixed around 3 p.m. Farm machinery will also be on display for you to see and learn about. Food will be for sale on-site which will benefit a local 4-H Club.

• Old Farm LaMancha Dairy Goats, owned by Greg & Ginny Spurlock, 23330 Delmar Avenue, Jordan

The Spurlocks' interest in dairy goats, which led to the decision to breed and raise them, began in the mid 1980s. The animals themselves are not hard to love, as they are naturally affectionate and easy to handle. Their practical qualities, such as milk, meat, and fiber (in the fiber producing goats) are what made them attractive. The Spurlocks involvement in third world missionary projects showed the need for an upgrade in nutrition as well as a tool for added income, and the dairy goat fits this need quite well. They got their first Dairy Goat on Christmas, 1990, and 16 years later they maintain a herd of 60-100 purebred LaManchas.

• Cinnamon Ridge Alpacas, owned by Rick & Cindy Sanders, 27290 Vergus Ave., New Prague

Cinnamon Ridge is known for raising beautiful Suri and Huacaya Alpacas. Alpacas are native to South America and often mistaken for llamas. The animals are raised for their fleece (called fiber). These beautiful animals will steal your hearts from the first moment you see them.

Learn about caring and handling alpaca in the extreme Minnesota weather. Try your hand at processing fiber using carders and drop spindles and see the many things that can be made using the fiber from these wonderful animals.

• Havlicek's Veseli Vrsek Happy Hill Orchard, owned by Dennis & Lynn Havlicek, 26526 Newport Ave., Webster

Havlicek's Veseli Vrsek Orchard, which in Czech means Happy Hill Orchard, is located seven miles east of New Prague, east off of Hwy. 13, or south of Scott Cty. Rd. 2. They planted their first set of 150 trees in the spring of 1984 and continued planting each year until they reached 1,000 trees in 1986. Since then they have added more trees and now are up to 1,300. The Havliceks started selling fruit in 1989, and it has always been a pick-your-own orchard, but they have also sold to stores. Master Gardeners will be on-site to answer questions and to help with guided tours of the apple orchard.

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