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Sutton County Holds 31st Annual Education Day for 6th Graders

story by Jaime Tankersley

For 31 years the Sawyer Family of Sonora, Texas have opened their ranch gates and allowed thousands of 6th grade students from Sutton and Edwards County to spend a day learning the value of our natural resources, and this year is no exception. Over 60 students attended the event organized and sponsored by the Edwards-Plateau Soil and Water Conservation District (SWCD).

The day was filled with educational sessions including: plant identification, benefits of a prescribed burn, soils, wind/water erosion, livestock handling/care/grazing, and conserving natural resources.

This event marks one of the longest running youth field days of its kind. Thousands of students have entered the gates to the Sawyer Ranch, and left with a greater comprehension of their impact on society.

The Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS), Sutton Underground Water District, Texas AgriLife Extension, Texas Parks and Wildlife, Texas Farm Bureau, and the Sawyer family were all part of this year's presentations and group sessions.

"For some children, this is their only contact with agriculture, and they will have a better understanding on where we obtain food and fiber," said Susan Bloodworth, Edwards-Plateau SWCD director. The Sawyers are very kind to have donated their ranch and facilities for the education of our local youth."

For more information about the SWCD's local efforts, contact them at the USDA-Service Center located at 301 South Crockett Avenue, or call them at 325-387-2730.

Texas Farm Bureau's Mobile Learning Barn Mondee Edwards (right) hands water to a Sonora 6th grade student.

The Texas Farm Bureau's Mobile Learning Barn was part of the 31st Annual Edwards-Plateau 6th Grade Field Day held on the Sawyer Family Ranch.

NRCS employee, Mondee Edwards (right), hands water to a Sonora 6th grade student as they learn the importance of water conservation using a rainfall simulator.

Sonora 6th grade students learn about wildlife habitat management with a game called "O Deer."

Sonora 6th grade students learn about wildlife habitat management as the play a game called "O Deer" after listening to a presentation made by Texas Parks and Wildlife Biologist, Mary Humphrey (right).