Agriplex chickens

Rain and chilly evening temperatures didn’t deter local residents from getting their chicken fix on Tuesday, as the North Alabama Agriplex hosted its first in-person event — a class on raising backyard chickens — since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic last year. Agriplex director Rachel Dawsey, right, presented the socially-distanced class under the Agriplex’s outdoor pavilion. 

If the North Alabama Agriplex can make its plan to conduct in-person activities work by hosting them in the great outdoors, there was no better time to test the idea than Tuesday. 

With both the thermometer and the sun going down, a mix of rain and light sleet fell as the local nonprofit welcomed guests back for the first time since halting all on-site events as the COVID-19 pandemic escalated last spring. But under the Agriplex’s outdoor pavilion, the seats were filled, the guests were attentive, and no one seemed to mind the evening chill. 

Tuesday’s Living Landscapes class on backyard chickens, headed by Agriplex director Rachel Dawsey and Alabama Co-op Extension agent Landon Marks, marks the first of several planned March events that’ll welcome people back to the Agriplex. 

The next test of the organization’s new outdoor-only events lineup will come on Saturday at 9 a.m, with a Farm Kids learning presentation on goats around the farm. 

To register for Saturday’s class, or any of the Agriplex’s upcoming in-person courses, visit the nonprofit’s website at agriplex.org. 

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