Friday - Sunday - Varies by Event
Monday - Thursday 8 am - 10 pm
Darrell Towe Department of Agriculture Western Kentucky University Bowling Green, KY 42101 (270) 843-3542
Offer facilities for conducting livestock shows or sales, machinery shows, rodeos, or similar events.
The Agricultural Research and Education Complex (AREC) is composed of the WKU farm, the Brown Agricultural Exposition Center, the Leaf Composting and Environmental Research unit and the Golf Course/Turfgrass Management unit. The AREC functions as a vital component of the Department of Agriculture at Western Kentucky University. The AREC provides cutting edge scientific agricultural education to undergraduate students. The areas of specialization in the Department of Agriculture include: agribusiness, plant science, soil science, animal science, dairy science, equine science, horticulture, turf and golf course management, agricultural education, general agriculture, pre-forestry and pre-veterinary medicine. Although the majority of the 400 students who utilize the AREC are from within a 100-mile radius of Bowling Green, Kentucky, there are students from throughout Kentucky, ten other states and two foreign countries. Thirteen full-time faculty members collaborate and share expertise to accomplish the mission of the AREC. Numerous students are involved in activities and research at the AREC
The 783-acre University Farm is a vitally important component of the agricultural program. The farm is used extensively to provide "hands-on" laboratory experiences. This function becomes more important each year since an increasingly large number of students come from non-farm backgrounds. The farm and Brown Agricultural Exposition Center accommodate approximately 35 laboratories serving a total of more than 700 students each year. In addition, the Department of Agriculture is committed to providing cooperative work experience for the majority of the students in Agriculture. For students with little or no farm experience, the WKU farm is used to provide those students with the basic farm experiences deemed necessary to advance to more complex cooperative experiences. An increasing number of employers have suggested that agricultural graduates need to have been involved in undergraduate research projects. Consequently, the WKU farm has become the "research laboratory" for a large number of students in the Department of Agriculture. Many undergraduate laboratories have research components that involve group as well as individual research projects.
The farm is essential to provide a setting for conducting applied research and public service activities. The livestock enterprises include dairy cattle, beef cattle, horses, swine and sheep. The crops include corn, soybeans, and wheat for grain production. Forages consist of corn silage, alfalfa hay, grass hay and a variety of grass and legume pasture mixes. Students are involved in all aspects of the farm operation from planning and decision making regarding production practices to the economic analysis of each farm enterprise. Faculty members and agricultural industry representatives collaborate on research and demonstration projects to make the farm a major source of production information for farmers and agribusinesses of this region.
Another major asset of the Department is the Leonard D. Brown Agricultural Exposition Center (BAC). In addition to serving as an excellent setting for many animal science laboratories and student functions for the Department, the Center also serves as a major public service facility for the agricultural community. In fact, the Brown Center has become the focal point of agricultural events in this region of Kentucky. The Center annually accommodates more than 150 different events with total attendance greater than 100,000 persons. Many of these events include youth groups such as 4-H and FFA. Approximately two-thirds of the events held at the Center are non-revenue generating events.
Exit 4 from Natcher Parkway in Bowling Green. South on 31W to Elrod Road. Left on Elrod. Entrance is first driveway on left.
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