SUNY Morrisville hosts nearly 400 visitors during Open Farm Day

Goats during Open Farm Day at SUNY Morrisville
Published date
2 p.m.

MORRISVILLE, NY — A steady rain didn’t deter hundreds of visitors from learning more about SUNY Morrisville’s dairy complex, programs, cows, calves and baby goats, during Open Farm Day, held Saturday, July 29.

SUNY Morrisville’s Arnold R. Fisher Dairy Complex was among farms throughout Madison County which opened its doors and showcased its facility to the public during the annual Open Farm Day event. The day offered visitors an opportunity to see 26 working farms in Madison County, meet local farmers, enjoy tours and demonstrations, animals and products tastings.  

“We were thrilled to have so many visitors and families stop by for Open Farm Day, to see and learn about our dairy operation at SUNY Morrisville, said Jon Mills, herd manger. “It was a pleasure to talk with them and show them a working dairy and how it is used to educate students to be successful in the dairy industry.”

“It was a great event,” Ashley Marshall, associate professor of dairy science, said. “Everyone was very positive and appreciative about learning more about how dairy cattle are cared for and milked in our facility and in the dairy industry as a whole.”

SUNY Morrisville faculty, staff and students provided tours of the college’s dairy complex, located on the west side of Eaton Street, a state-of-the-art free-stall dairy facility which houses 185 milking cows, as well as an electronically enhanced milking parlor and a student-managed computer system.

Carrianne Bush, an agricultural science student, manned the calf barn throughout the day, answering questions about the care of heifer calves, along with showing off goats she is responsible for as an intern at the college this summer. 

Nearly 400 visitors got a firsthand look at how SUNY Morrisville’s facility serves as a real-life learning laboratory for students in dairy and agriculture-related programs, providing them the opportunity to learn how to properly care for and manage animals on a dairy farm. The complex also offers a chance for community members to visit and learn more about how milk is produced on many commercial dairy operations in the United States. 

The college’s dairy complex features two growing heifer barns, weaned heifer barn, calf barn, maternity barn and a livestock/show barn to provide students with a true hands-on experience. The college’s 500 acres of cropland ensure a supply of forages for the herd.

SUNY Morrisville dairy news

•    Last year, the SUNY Morrisville dairy facility received a 2022 Progressive Genetics Herd Award by Holstein Association USA, Inc. 

•    The college is in the process of using its milk to make its own cheese and milk products.

•    A new bachelor’s degree in animal science is launching this fall with specializations in dairy management, livestock management, agronomy, and agricultural outreach and education.