Discovery Park of America has announced new partners and more details for "AgriCulture: Innovating for Our Survival," a permanent exhibit dedicated to telling the story of innovation in agriculture. The exhibit will open Dec. 5, 2020 in the Simmons Bank Ag Center.
The Tennessee Beef Promotion Board has contributed $50,000 to the exhibit that tells the story of farming innovation in the past, present—and especially—future in a fun and interactive way. Visitors of all ages will gain an understanding of how food and fiber get from the farm to the family and the role technological, scientific and genetic innovation in agriculture plays in society and culture around the world. "Those of us who work every day in the agriculture industry are always looking for fun ways to educate the public on where their food comes from," said Valerie Bass, executive director of the board. "The board and I believe an exhibit with facts about innovation in all areas of agriculture is going to fill that need in a unique way."
New partners include The Dairy Alliance; East Tennessee Nursery and Tennessee Department of Agriculture Division of Forestry; H&R Agri-Power and Case IH; Roundstone Native Seed; "Silo"; Star Pastures Apiary; Tennessee Beef Promotion Board; and USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service.
Guests to Discovery Park have seen a completely refurbished 1914 Case steam engine on display in front of the Simmons Bank Ag Center. When the new exhibit opens, that example of innovation of the past will be on display next to a modern tractor of today loaded with new technology thanks to H&R Agri-Power and Case IH. "We're excited about this opportunity to help educate the public on the latest and greatest advancements in farm equipment," said Wayne Hunt, president of a 17-store Case IH dealership with stores in Kentucky, Tennessee, Illinois, Indiana, Mississippi and Alabama. "I'm certain visitors to this exhibit are going to be surprised at how modern tools are allowing farmers to maximize both their time and their resources," said Hunt. H&R Agri-Power and Case IH are also making a $50,000 contribution to the exhibit.
The Dairy Alliance, a nonprofit funded by dairy farm families of the Southeast, is contributing $15,000 to the project. "On behalf of dairy farm families, we work to educate the public with facts about dairy foods and the innovation taking place in dairy that allows farmers to do more with less," said Denise Jones, manager for farm relations for Kentucky and Tennessee. "We believe a fun exhibit like this one is a great way to help people learn more about this important aspect of agriculture."
While the exhibit design team has been working with these new partners and many others to develop this one-of-a-kind exhibit, they've also been working with sponsor Nutrien Ag Solutions to begin turning the area in front of the Simmons Bank Ag Center into a working display of crops frequently grown throughout the region. Row crops like corn, cotton and soybeans will eventually be seen growing on what is now a lush, green lawn. Plans also include space for flowering plants that will offer nectar and pollen throughout the growing season to attract and support a variety of pollinators. This section will also connect to Discovery Park's existing vineyard.
More information about the exhibit can be found at DiscoveryParkofAmerica.com/agriculture.
About Discovery Park of America
The mission of Discovery Park of America, a premier world-class museum and 50-acre heritage park located in Union City, Tennessee, is to inspire children and adults to see beyond. Included is a 100,000-square-foot museum featuring 9 interactive exhibit galleries with additional space for temporary exhibits from around the world and a 50-acre heritage park. Discovery Park of America is a 501(c)(3) public charity funded by generous individuals, corporations and foundations including its principal funder, the Robert E. and Jenny D. Kirkland Foundation. For more information, visit DiscoveryParkofAmerica.com, Facebook, Instagram and Twitter.