New Castle Agriculture Building receives major improvements, supports future industry leaders


HARRINGTON, Del. – “And that was really important to one year later after getting Community Project Funding to be able to cut a ribbon and give $900,000 to the state fair and their leadership to be able to make this day a reality,” U.S. Congresswoman Lisa Blunt Rochester said.

An old, underutilized building will now be a agricultural hub for 4H and FFA students on the grounds of the Delaware State Fair. “Agriculture is one of the top industries in our state,” Rep. Blunt Rochester said.

“The FFA and 4H members are the future of not only the state of Delaware but also of this country,” Delaware State Fair President Ron Draper said.

The New Castle Agriculture Building received improvements thanks to over a million dollars in federal and state funding.  The fair grounds received over $900,000 from federal funds and $250,000 from the state of Delaware for the project.

The Community Project Funding is an initiative from Blunt Rochester’s office who received over 150 applications. Those applications were narrowed down to just 10 with the New Castle Building project making the final appropriations package and put to fruition.

The facility will allow both leadership organizations the opportunity to hold competitions, house animals, and learn more about the industry all year round. “For us to have a place where we can kind of be together, grow together, learn together and become leaders together as well,” Delaware National Officer Candidate Kendal Metz said.

Metz says the facility is a huge step towards progression for an industry that continues to evolve.  “From not only just people who grew up in traditional agricultural backgrounds and farmers, but it’s also bio technology. It’s environmental sciences, its the trades,” Metz said.

Congresswoman Lisa Blunt Rochester says she was the first person in 120 years from Delaware to be apart of the U.S. House Agriculture Committee, showing her true commitment to agriculture.

She adds Monday’s ceremony was not only a move for the industry in the first state, but for the future leaders of agriculture. “And then from a science perspective, many things that we will be able to discover about how we eat, how we live, and even life saving treatments come from agriculture,” Rep. Blunt Rochester said.

“Young people are our future. We say it all the time but it couldn’t be more true now than anytime in our history.”

The facility will also support agricultural programming for families residing in underserved areas across the first state.

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