Stage & Theatre
USDA Grants Awarded to Promote New Economic Opportunity for Farmers and Ranchers through Local and Regional Projects PDF Print E-mail
News Releases - Stage & Theatre
Written by USDA Office of Communications   
Friday, 21 September 2012 14:42
Over 130 Projects Connecting Farmers with New Markets

CLEVELAND, Sept. 21, 2012 – Agriculture Deputy Secretary Kathleen Merrigan today announced over $9 million in grants to organizations across 39 states, the District of Columbia and Puerto Rico to initiatives that bolster the connection between agricultural producers and their consumers while improving access to healthy food and strengthening local economies. Merrigan made the Farmers Market Promotion Program (FMPP) awards announcement while speaking at the Project for Public Spaces Annual Public Market Conference.

"This year's Farmers Market Promotion Program awards are diverse and illustrate the many different ways farmers are directly connecting to communities and consumers," said Merrigan. "From starting up mobile markets to helping new farmers and ranchers, these grants will create new economic opportunities and encourage consumers to eat healthier."

Merrigan made the announcement in Ohio, which has a long tradition of local farmers pursuing direct-marketing opportunities in their operations. More than 6,800 Ohio farms sell directly to consumers. These investments represent USDA's efforts to strengthen local and regional food systems through projects that recruit and train farmers, expand economic opportunities, increase access to healthy foods and use social media to link markets and vendors. This year, almost five percent of total funding will be awarded to six projects in the state.

This year's funding includes:

  • More than 40 projects that connect farmers and ranchers to new customers by establishing new markets and other retail outlets, community supported agriculture programs or extend the market season;
  • Seventeen projects that will support the use of new delivery approaches such as online and mobile markets, broadening the customer base for several businesses;
  • Thirteen projects that reinforce USDA's commitment to new and beginning farmers and ranchers, increasing opportunities, training and support for those just getting started;
  • Twelve projects that focus on initiatives that support American Indian and Alaskan Native communities, and new opportunities for Latino, refugee and immigrant farmers;
  • Ten projects that will help hospitals and health care organizations improve eating habits in their communities through education and the direct marketing of fresh local produce; and
  • Nine projects that support agritourism, bringing visitors and consumers to farms and ranches.

Since 2006, FMPP has awarded over $32 million. FMPP's mission, which was broadened by the 2008 Farm Bill, is to establish, expand, and promote farmers markets and direct producer-to-consumer marketing. FMPP is administered by the Agricultural Marketing Service (AMS). The full list of awards granted for fiscal year 2012 is available at www.ams.usda.gov/AMSv1.0/FMPP.

In 2009, USDA launched the Know Your Farmer, Know Your Food initiative to strengthen the critical connection between farmers and consumers and supports local and regional food systems. Through this initiative, USDA integrates programs and policies that stimulate food- and agriculturally-based community economic development; foster new opportunities for farmers and ranchers; promote locally and regionally produced and processed foods; cultivate healthy eating habits and educated, empowered consumers; expand access to affordable fresh and local food; and demonstrate the connection between food, agriculture, community and the environment. Know Your Farmer, Know Your Food also leads a national conversation about food and agriculture to strengthen the connection between consumers and farmers.

An interactive view of USDA programs that support local and regional foods, including FMPP, is available at the Know Your Farmer, Know Your Food Compass. The KYF Compass is a digital guide to USDA resources related to local and regional food systems. The Compass consists of an interactive U.S. map USDA-supported local and regional food projects and an accompanying narrative documenting the results of this work through case studies, photos and video content.

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USDA is an equal opportunity provider and employer. To file a complaint of discrimination, write: USDA, Office of the Assistant Secretary for Civil Rights, Office of Adjudication, 1400 Independence Ave., SW, Washington, DC 20250-9410 or call (866) 632-9992 (Toll-free Customer Service), (800) 877-8339 (Local or Federal relay), (866) 377-8642 (Relay voice users).


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Scott Co Board of Supervisors Tentative Agenda Sept 24-28, 2012 PDF Print E-mail
News Releases - Stage & Theatre
Written by Chris Berge   
Friday, 21 September 2012 14:21

 
Davenport Parks and Recreation Events next week PDF Print E-mail
News Releases - Stage & Theatre
Written by Davenport Parks & Recreation   
Friday, 21 September 2012 14:11
Customer Input Invite

 
How to Get Started Marketing a Book PDF Print E-mail
News Releases - Stage & Theatre
Written by Ginny Grimsley   
Thursday, 20 September 2012 07:52
By: Marsha Friedman

It’s understandable, really. People who have the passion necessary to write a book usually have just one thing on their minds: writing a book. Not marketing a book. Some may think ahead to getting it published, but, tragically, that’s where the planning often ends.

I’m not exaggerating when I say “tragically”! I talk to many people who’ve poured years of effort, money and sacrifice into their books, which wind up sitting in boxes in their garage. They never thought about how they might market their books themselves or budgeted for book promotion services.

When’s the best time to start thinking about marketing a book? Ideally, before you even sit down to begin writing. Because — and I speak from experience here — the first step will help in your writing.

Step 1: Ask yourself, “Who is my audience?”

The answer is the first piece of any marketing plan and it can also help you define what you’ll write. When I decided to write a book about public relations, I had planned to write it for businesses in general. Then I thought, “That’s too broad. Who will my audience really be?”

I decided to write for individual professionals such as doctors, lawyers and financial planners. Not only would that put a face to the people I was writing for, it would also give me the first piece of my marketing plan.

If you want to write a book and you’re a financial planner working for baby boomers chugging toward 65, you might write about planning for retirement after age 50. Another audience might be the boomers’ kids – adults who may be helping their parents. Depending on the expertise you put in the book, you might find other audiences you can target as well.

Here are the next steps to consider in planning your promotional campaign:

• What’s the best way to reach that audience? Where will you find the people you expect will be interested in your book? Will you buy advertising, look for speaking engagements, try to whip up interest from the media? You might hire a publicist or contract with your publisher to handle PR, or put together a promotional tour. You’ll definitely need a website. Will you build one yourself or hire a pro? Research the options that appeal to you and find out how effective they are in terms of meeting your goals. If you’re considering contracting with professionals to help you, get references from people who’ve had successful marketing experiences.

• How much will it cost? Some options are less expensive, others more. Look into the ones that interest you and get an idea of their price. Decide how much you can afford to spend and budget for it. Is there an organization or business that would benefit from sponsoring you? A landscape designer, for instance, might get financial help from a plant nursery or a tools manufacturer in exchange for standing behind a business or product. A chef might find an ally in a food manufacturer.

• Develop a following online. Do you have a database of people already interested in what you have to say? If not, turn to social media and start building it now. The more of a following you have, the more potential audience you’ve created for your marketing message. Big numbers will also turn heads when you try to get speaking engagements or guest spots on radio and TV talk shows. Having a following is everything. The organizations and media that book you for an interview are also hoping all those followers will either buy tickets or stop by their website.

Marketing is too important to be an afterthought, so think about it long before it’s time to get started. Yes, I understand the effort that goes into writing a book. I know it’s hard to think about anything else! But if you have invested your dreams in that baby, you probably want to share it with the world. And that takes planning.

About Marsha Friedman

Marsha Friedman is a 22-year veteran of the public relations industry. She is the CEO of EMSI Public Relations (www.emsincorporated.com), a national firm that provides PR strategy and publicity services to corporations, entertainers, authors and professional firms. Marsha is the author of Celebritize Yourself: The 3-Step Method to Increase Your Visibility and Explode Your Business and she can also be heard weekly on her Blog Talk Radio Show, EMSI’s PR Insider every Thursday at 3:00 PM EST.

 
WQPT TO HOLD AUDITIONS FOR TELEVISED “IT’S A WONDERFUL LIFE: A RADIO PLAY” PDF Print E-mail
News Releases - Stage & Theatre
Written by Lora Adams   
Thursday, 20 September 2012 07:37

MOLINE, ILLINOIS – WQPT and WVIK are teaming up to produce “It’s a Wonderful Life: a Radio Play” set in 1946. The radio play tells the classic story of George Bailey and his friend, Clarence who helps him through his darkest hour.

Auditions for the production will take place at the District Theatre in downtown Rock Island on September 22 and 23 from 3 pm to 5 pm. People auditioning will be asked to read from the script and 16 bars of music of their choice.  “This piece has a 1940’s sensibility so I am looking for actors who can create that kind of feeling” said director and WQPT Marketing Director, Lora Adams.

The production will rehearse November 12, 13, 14 with a dress on the 15th and a 7:30 pm performance on November 16th and two performances (2:00 and 7:30 pm) on Saturday the 17th.  Performances will take place in Potter Hall on the campus of Augustana College in Rock Island, Illinois. The performances will be taped and air on WQPT and WVIK during the month of December as a holiday special.

“The author Joe Landry and Kevin Connors, who created the music, granted us the rights to air it on television and radio once during the holiday season,” said Adams.  The production is done as a radio play so the actors will need to be familiar with the script but are not required to memorize it.

Proceeds from the production will be used to support local programming for both WQPT and WVIK who are producing the show along with Augustana College.

Please bring a photo and resume to the audition. Please direct questions to Lora Adams at This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it or call 309-764-2400.

WQPT is a media service of Western Illinois University located in Moline, Illinois.

 
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