On Saturday, Feb. 13, seed aficionados spread their knowledge to the experienced and inexperienced seed connoisseurs, alike at the Douglas County Fairgrounds. However, seeds made up only a small part of the marvels present at the Seventh Annual Kaw Valley Seed Fair. Vendors from all over Lawrence set up booths to share their knowledge and home-grown goods including the likes of bread, honey, eggs and jam. Various agriculture-centered groups also made appearances to further promote gardening awareness.
Upon walking through the front doors, attendees encountered tables filled with seeds for a variety of fruits, vegetables and plants free for their taking. Many people brought envelopes or small baggies to help compartmentalize the plethora of seeds available. After walking past these initial booths, attendees could wander past a variety of booths filled with things to buy and interesting people to meet. At these stations, one could find an array of jams, jellies, eggs, baked goods and more. Of course, nearly every merchant had even more seeds available for purchase.
Although many people had the intent of buying and selling merchandise, the promotion of awareness and information about the seed industry served as the focal point of the event. Everyone from attendees to event organizers seemed excited to share their knowledge and experience with anyone willing to listen. Various groups held tutorials about a wide range of topics concerning the best seed care and garden practices. To add even more fun, the organizers handed out a plethora of raffle prizes throughout the afternoon.
Both attendees and booth owners eagerly shared their experiences and reasons for attending. Kyle, from Juniper Hill Farms, spoke about his involvement with the Seed Fair. This marks the second year for the organization’s presence at the event. Kyle mentioned that he most enjoys spreading the knowledge about gardening and the best, most eco-friendly seed implementations. Richard, a veteran of the Seed Fair, focused less on the seeds and more on his honey and eggs. He clearly expressed his enthusiasm for the event through the bee costume that he wore.
Madison and Brandon, two event-goers, related their excitement about attending this year’s fair. They have frequented the event in the past and seemed glad to attend this year. They talked about their ability to network with other gardeners and to learn from the more experienced participants.
If you missed out on the seed extravaganza this year, fear not. The Kaw Valley Seed Fair is sure to be back with bang next year. Also, make sure to check out the full interviews below: