Don't Farm Naked says Friends of the St. Joe River

Well, yes. The provocative title is sort of like those old "now that I have your attention" advertisements. But it's for a good reason. The Friends of the St. Joe River Association promise "Don't Farm Naked: Covered Fields Create Healthy Soils, Bigger Profits and Cleaner Water," will be an "engaging and educational night."
 
The talk is part of the seventh annual event for the Watershed Council, this year at 5 p.m. Friday, March 14 at the Sturges-Young Auditorium in downtown Sturgis. 
 
The evening will include dinner, networking, cash-bar the presentation of the Al Smith Annual Stewardship Award, and the keynote presentation "Don't Farm Naked" by Dr. Hans Kok, an Indiana-based agricultural engineer. 
 
Kok’s presentation will include a brief history of agriculture and live demonstrations showing the impact of certain practices on soil biology, agricultural productivity, and water quality. The Friends say they hope to have lots of agricultural growers in the audience, and they stress the event is not just for farmers.
 
A silent auction to raise money for the Friends of the St. Joe River also is part of the event. The auction will include items such as a guided fishing trip, landscape paintings by local artists, rain barrels, bird houses, local wine/beer packages and a guided rafting trip on Idaho’s Salmon River.
 
The Friends of the St. Joe River Association is a not-for-profit watershed organization working to unite a diverse group of stakeholders throughout the St. Joseph River Watershed in a collaborative effort to protect, restore, and foster stewardship of the watershed as a critical component of the Great Lakes Basin. 
 
Before the Friends of the St. Joe River was founded, many communities had their own local groups to clean their stretch of the river. Organizers recognized the need to bring all of these small groups together into one group to work towards the same goal -- a healthy river system. The Friends established a presence within the watershed community by addressing broad-scale issues, including nonpoint source pollution, in a collaborative, strategic manner.
 
The St. Joseph River Watershed is the third largest watershed of the Lake Michigan basin and is located in the Southwest portion of Michigan and the northern portion of Indiana. 
 
Those interested in attending the annual event may register here or by calling 574-303-9390. The registration fee is $25 and includes dinner.  
 
And clothing is required.
 
Source: Matt Meersman, Friends of the St. Joe River