Ag Ed Center to Break Ground
MANITOWOC, Wis. — Since 2010, a committed Board of Directors has been planning to build the Wisconsin Agricultural Education Center (WAEC), doing their due diligence every step of the way. At 2:00 pm on October 11, 2016, the board and supporters break ground on a world-class, interactive discovery center that will focus on sustainable and responsible farming practices that are a hallmark of Wisconsin agriculture. The groundbreaking takes place at the future building site near Newton at the intersection of Hwy 43 and County C in Manitowoc County.
“The Wisconsin Agricultural Education Center will provide visitors the opportunity to connect with agriculture through a better understanding of where their food comes from, and the tremendous impact it has on their lives and on those of everyone committed to healthy living and a healthy world,” says Nic Schoenberger, WAEC board vice president and a Wisconsin dairy farmer.
During the event, the WAEC Board of Directors will announce a substantial donation, bringing the organization closer to their campaign goal of $13 million. The Center already received a $5 million Non-State Grant, which allows the use of state funds on non-state construction/development projects that have a statewide public purpose. The grant is a 50% matching fund. Through donations from farmers, allied industry, and foundations the organization has met this match and reached 77% of their goal.
Enthusiasm for this project continues to grow and we are excited to be announcing another significant gift at this groundbreaking ceremony.
Wisconsin Lieutenant Governor Rebecca Kleefisch will be in attendance along with Deputy Secretary of Tourism, Sarah Klavas.
Plans for the center include:
- A 29,000 square foot discovery center with educational displays and hands-on learning opportunities
- A birthing barn where visitors can watch calves being born
- An interactive globe that will showcase population density and highlight the importance of finding a way to feed the world
- A 300-person conference center
- An opportunity to tour Grotegut Farm, a progressive third-generation dairy farm focused on sustainability and farming best practices
- A café and country store featuring Wisconsin products and an outdoor playground
“The Center celebrates our rich agricultural heritage,” said Julie Maurer, WAEC board president and a Wisconsin dairy farmer. “We plan to open to the public in 2018 for school groups, bus tours and traveling visitors of all ages.”
— Wisconsin Agricultural Education Center