Milking demonstrations, pony rides, food drive among the day’s activities to kick off Aggie football season
(LAS CRUCES, N.M.) – New Mexico’s agricultural community is planning a fun day for people of all ages and backgrounds to get an up-close view of New Mexico agriculture – but instead of driving to the farm or ranch to experience it, all you have to do is show up before New Mexico State University (NMSU) takes on the University of Minnesota at the home opener of Aggie football season on September 7.
Agriculture Day activities will take place on the NMSU campus. Dozens of booths representing all facets of New Mexico agriculture will stretch along Arrowhead Drive (formerly Payne Street), north of Aggie Memorial Stadium and east of the Pan American Center. The fun begins at 2 p.m. and continues until kickoff at 6 p.m.
Here’s a sampling of some of the many free activities you’ll find at Agriculture Day:
- Recreational pony rides and equine therapy rides (which rely on a horse’s movement to deliver physical, occupational, and speech/language therapies to the rider)
- Cow-milking demonstrations
- Roping demonstrations
- Photo opportunities – including with El Whoppo, the GIANT New Mexico green chile cheeseburger
You’ll also be able to see up close some of the shrimp being raised at NMSU’s Agricultural Experiment Station for commercial sale. The shrimp eat the protein-rich meal of cottonseed, the traditionally underutilized portion of cotton, which is one of New Mexico’s biggest crops.
“You can think of Agriculture Day as a one-stop shop to learn about New Mexico agriculture and experience parts of it close up in a fun way,” New Mexico Secretary of Agriculture Jeff Witte said. “I invite you to stop in at every booth and ask questions to learn more about the production of food as well as things like wool and cotton that are used to make clothes and other items we use every single day.”
Witte also encourages people to come to the event just a little hungry – not only to enjoy the dairy products, chile products, and gourmet cooking oils (made from pressed cottonseed) that will be sampled at several booths, but also to buy local foods from the concession stands in and around Aggie Memorial Stadium. To celebrate Agriculture Day, NMSU’s foodservice provider, Sodexo Dining Services, will be jazzing up its menu with New Mexico food items. That means you can expect New Mexico beef in your burger, New Mexico cheese on your tacos, New Mexico chile on your nachos, and New Mexico pecans and pistachios on top of your favorite ice cream.
Also among the exhibitors at Agriculture Day will be Roadrunner Food Bank, which helps feed nearly 40,000 hungry New Mexicans a week through food pantries, shelters, group homes, soup kitchens, low-income senior housing sites, and regional food banks. People are invited to stop by Roadrunner’s booth to learn about its programs, how to volunteer at its southern branch, and more. People are also asked to consider bringing a bag filled with non-perishable food to donate.
A group of agriculture organizations and companies across New Mexico is sponsoring the game. NMSU’s College of Agricultural, Consumer, and Environmental Sciences (ACES) and New Mexico Department of Agriculture (NMDA) provided support in coordinating the event alongside NMSU Athletics Department and other university partners.
The game will feature the first-ever Big 10 team to play in Aggie Memorial Stadium. Tickets to this special game start at $10 and are available now at the Pan American Center ticket office (575-646-1420) and on the day of the game. This is the first of seven home games this year; season tickets are available starting at $49.
For more information about Agriculture Day, please visit the related Facebook event page. For more information about NMSU Aggie football, please visit www.nmstatesports.com.