Tips for great field days – thanks once again to the GRDC Extension group for their ideas. I have build on their brainstorm with some other thoughts collected from discussions over the last 12 months.
Tips for great field days …
- Well located – think about where the field day site is to be located. Is it easily accessible? If it’s a very wet season will people still be able to access the site? What is the noise level like? Is there a busy highway or train line close to the site which will impact on peoples ability to hear speakers?
- Run on time – start and finish on time, value the effort people have made to be there. This includes the sessions during the day – speakers don’t feel valued if they have prepared for 30 minutes are then are cut short because the person prior has gone over time.
- Know and “name” the outcomes to be achieved by the event. A few well formed outcomes are more achievable than lots and lots!
- Local, relevant and topical – what are the key issues being faced in the district right now.
- Credible topics – how can this be integrated into my farm business?
- Recognised farmer – utilise farmers where possible to tell stories and value add to the research with their first hand experiences.
- Evaluate – follow up, how effective was the event? Were the agreed outcomes achieved? What worked well and what could be done differently next time?
- Good agronomy – make sure the trials are well presented and in line with district practice.
- Interaction time – ensure there is time for participants to views trials, ask questions and discuss what they might have learnt amongst themselves.
- Good food – this is vitally important! Poor food will be all that is reported on so get it right!
- Focus – not heaps of trials or topics.
- Crop trial inspection time – focus on a few trials is more effectively than overwhelming people with lots to view. Think about how much you can take in during one session.
- Add something that is a “bit left of field” or “blue sky” to create some interest
- BBQ & beer to finish off the day and allow some very important networking time.
What other ideas do readers have about what makes a great field day?
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