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Turf Grass Coaches Clinic

Tuesday, January 22, 2019 - 5:00am

Announcer: Farm and Family is a production of the Mississippi State University extension service.

Amy Myers: Today, we're talking about the Turf Grass Coach's Clinic. Hello, I'm Amy Myers and welcome to Farm and Family. Today, we're speaking with Michael Richard, Mississippi State University, extension associate. Michael, why is this turf grass coach's clinic so important?

Michael Richard: I'm really excited about this show we're gonna have for people across the state of Mississippi. One of the cool things about working in turf grass is that we get to interact with a lot of people who really don't have the formal training that an undergrad would have, be that a home loan owner and as well as, what we're doing here in sports turf.

We interact a lot with high school coaches who wear many different hats. Often times, they are teaching class, they're coaching a sport and on top of that, they're required to maintain their sports field. On top of coaches, we also deal with people who work within maintenance.

They really have the same thing they have to deal with and so, without the formal training, they're really just trying to do their very best to maintain a safe playing field for the high school athletes. This coach's clinic is gonna be an opportunity for high school coaches from around the state to be able to come out for the day and really hear about many different topics that will help impact them to help improve their sports field maintenance practices.

Amy Myers: Okay, it's also for those that work in parks and recently and others who might be in the turf grass field, right?

Michael Richard: Parks and recs folks, I think you can probably lump them in as well with high school coaches, just folks who usually have a low budget, have things they have to overcome as well as just maybe not have that formal training and they can utilize this event to be able to grab some useful information to be able to better manage their sports field for the people that they take care of in their community.

Amy Myers: And even golf superintendents maybe?

Michael Richard: They will pick up some information but this is really driven particularly for folks who are going to deal with sport's field and sports fields alone. The golf side is slightly different but I think they would probably benefit from some of it as well.

Amy Myers: What will folks be learning about specifically at this event?

Michael Richard: Yeah, so we're gonna really run the entire gamut of sports field maintenance. That's gonna include fertilization, better mowing practices, cultivation, things like aerification, how is that gonna impact your maintenance, disease control. We're gonna have some time where we're gonna talk about different types of equipment. There'll be equipment demonstration there as well.

We'll have several vendors who will be there to show these coaches some new innovative equipment that will help them better maintain their fields. We'll do some work on calibration of sprayer equipment. Really, we wanna be there that day to give them information but as well as, to hear from them, to be able to answer specific questions that they would have. We don't want people to leave that day without having their questions answered.

Amy Myers: What else would you like to add about the Turf Grass Coach's Clinic?

Michael Richard: One thing I think that's really important for them to know is that we're gonna offer continuing education credits for these coaches. I know that they have to have a certain amount of credits throughout a four or five year span. We're gonna have a half credit, I know it sounds kinda funny, but that's what's offered based upon the hours of this coach's clinic.

Amy Myers: And will folk need to wear their outside shoes, pants, sunglasses and hats and bring their sunscreen?

Michael Richard: This is a really casual event, so come dressed comfortably. We're gonna spend quite a few hours indoors and just having conversation, looking at power points and information but we will also be outside. We'll have equipment demonstrations there for folks to take a look at some of the new equipment that they can probably use.

Amy Myers: And lunch will be provided and there is no registration fee, right?

Michael Richard: Correct.

Amy Myers: When and where will the Turf Grass Coach's Clinic be held?

Michael Richard: It's gonna be February 19 in Summit, Mississippi at the Southwest Community College.

Amy Myers: Is there a registration deadline?

Michael Richard: There is no deadline. You can show up the day of but we'd ask you to contact your county agent prior to, just so we know you're coming.

Amy Myers: How do we get more information or register for the Turf Grass Coach's Clinic?

Michael Richard: There is no specific website that they can go to. One thing I didn't mention previously, this is a very regional driven event and so, we're working directly with county agents. I would say if you have a desire to do one of these events in your region or one that's coming up here in February, to contact your county agent directly in your county, so at least we know that you're there and you have a head count.

Amy Myers: And to find out who your county agent is for Mississippi State University extension, go to extension.msstate.edu and click county offices.

Michael Richard: That's correct.

Amy Myers: Today, we've been speaking with Michael Richard, extension associate. I'm Amy Myers and this has been Farm and Family. Have a great day.

Announcer: Farm and family is a production of the Mississippi State University extension service.

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