2019 June PCEA-EC Minutes

Minutes: Piscataquis County Extension Association Executive Committee Meeting  6/10/2019, 3-5 pm

Present: Members: Beth McEvoy, Karen Murphy, Carole Boothroyd, Gretchen Huettner

Staff: Donna Coffin, Trisha Smith

Call to Order– President Beth McEvoy called the meeting to order at 3 pm. Karen Murphy selected as timekeeper.


  • Minutes of 5/13/2019 meeting were approved, with no corrections.
  • The Treasurer’s Report was approved, with no corrections.

Program Updates

 4-H Program Update- Sheila Norman

  • Penobscot County has hired an experienced temporary CEA, Dale Quimby, for the period of 6/17-10/28. Dale working 20 hours a week in Penobscot County frees some time for Sheila. The search for a full-time CEA will begin in early August, at which time Sheila will move upstairs in the Piscataquis office, leaving the downstairs office for the new CEA.
  • The Piscataquis Passport Program is taking enrollments for the summer session. New classes include Lynn Lubas’ environmental SPIN Club called Exploring the World Around You, mostly at the Law Farm and Susan Steven’s 4-H Fun, a SPIN Club at the Dover Cove Farmers’ Market.

Home Horticulture Report – Trisha Smith 

  • Master Gardener Volunteers are getting volunteer hours logged in at the Sherburne garden in Dexter and at the Dover Cove Farmers’ Market.
  • The deadline for enrollment in the Piscataquis Passport program was extended to June 21. About 30 kids are enrolled, compared to 50 in 2018 and the first batch of Passports has been mailed.
  • Trisha requests the Executive Committee’s yearly financial support of $500 for Veggie Vouchers. A motion to do so was made and seconded. The vote was a unanimous yes.
  • The Dover-Foxcroft Area Food Cupboard will be moving to the Piscataquis Regional Food Center building in July. There is a public food distribution event on July 12 that will allow for some limited tours of the new site.
  • At the June Cooperative Extension meeting, the committee tabled a request from Steve Grammont for Cooperative Extension to pledge financial support for a PRFC grant application. The PRFC has decided NOT to apply for the USDA Community Food Project grant at this time, but a discussion group has formed to develop a Community Food Project worthy of a grant. Contact Trisha if you would like to be notified of meetings.
  • Trisha is involved with the Oral History Project “Voices from Home” and is looking for a leader for a Voices from Home 4-H Club, as a great way to collect ag and 4-H history in Piscataquis County. The theme for July is “Upta Camp” and August is “Blue Ribbon Fairs”.
  • It’s possible to partner with the PRFC for a small gleaning project this year. Trisha is suggesting one farm, with one team. It will require a team leader and PRFC can supply volunteers.
  • The Share Table is up at the Cooperative Extension office to facilitate sharing small amounts of home garden produce. Merrilee at PRFC is designing a prototype that’s simple and inexpensive to replicate.

Piscataquis Cooperative Extension Activities Report- Donna Coffin

  • Donna reports 6 contacts May-June 2019. Questions included: tomato project, bees to pollinate crops, farm lease, soil fertility, plus 38 Ask the Expert Home Horticulture emails.


  • 178 One TomatoTM distributed so far. 18% have never gardened, 52% haven’t gardened in a long time, 21% never heard of UMaine Extension and 67% are new to One Tomato.
  • Kid’s Day at The Northeast Livestock Expo is on May 16. Donna did “What Animals Eat” display for 3000 kids and 500 volunteers. At the live-streamed preconditioned feeder calf sale, 94 head sold at an average of $1.14 per pound.
  • Colt Knight is hosting a Smoked Brisket and Informal Discussion for beef producers and NACAA membership drive at his home in Garland on June 15 at noon. Bring a dish to pass and a chair.
  • Low-Stress Cattle Management and Pasture Walk with Fred and Ben Cookson and Colt Knight at Shaw Road Farm on July 20. Time to be announced.
  • Women Caring for the Land, with SWCD and NRCS, is a free all-day event for women landowners on July 11. At Hall’s Christmas Tree Farm and Stutzman’s. Free. For women landowners. Focus on Forestry.
  • Tractor Safety Tips on July 30, 5:30-8:30 pm with SWCD at the Law Farm on the Milo Road in Dover-Foxcroft.
  • The Institutional Review Board approved an effort to assess the impact of So You Want to Farm in Maine, but Donna reports that the phone survey is not getting results and will rethink the survey method.
  • Donna’s article “Growing Gardens One Tomato TM at a Time” is published in the NACAA Journal,  https://www.nacaa.com/journal/index.php?jid=925


Unfinished Business

  • Phone App Development- Website Review- the committee discussed a few changes to the media survey. Donna will forward to Mike Scott for input. Gretchen described the 4-H Blog: From the Inside Out.
  • The school garden is harvesting radishes.
  • The Volunteer Fair at the Commons is scheduled for October 5 from 11 am -2 pm.

New Business

  • 2020 Budget Development Ideas involved a discussion of options for keeping the office open 3, 4 or 5 days a week and staffing needs.
  • It is suggested that the committee should keep track of the value of volunteer hours per year.


The meeting adjourned at 5 pm. Next meeting:  July 8, 2019, at Piscataquis County Extension Office, Dover-Foxcroft 3-5 pm.

Submitted by Carole Boothroyd, Secretary 7/4/2019