UF/IFAS Extension Polk County
The UF/IFAS Extension Polk County is a publicly-supported educational program to provide research based educational and leadership programs in:
- 4-H Youth Development
- Commercial Citrus
- Community Development
- Community and School Gardens
- Environmental Horticulture Production
- Florida Friendly Landscaping
- Livestock and Forages
- Master Gardener Program
- Natural Resources and Conservation
- Nutrition and Healthy Living
- Pesticide Applicator Training
- Residential Horticulture
- Small Farms and Alternative Enterprises
Volunteers are an important component of the Extension Service's educational outreach programs. Each year, more than 400 Polk County adults and youth volunteer as:
Facilities for Rent
The Extension Office also manages the county's Agricultural Center Complex. Facilities at the Agricultural Center include:
- The W.H. Stuart Conference Center has a stage, A/V equipment, and a non-commercial kitchen that can accommodate up to 350 people
- The John Brenneman Auditorium has a small stage platform and A/V equipment, and accommodates up to 45 people in a classroom-style setting (up to 70 people with chairs only)
- The Valencia Room has an adjoining non-commercial kitchen and classroom-style set up for up to 25 people
- The Clover Room has an adjoining non-commercial kitchen and classroom-style set up for up to 16 people
- The Conference Room has a large conference table with seating for up to 15 people
- The Paul Hayman Livestock Arena and barns are available for certain types of events and can accommodate up to 1,100 people, with more than 200 animal ties
Groups requesting facilities must meet qualifications per lease guidelines. Private events such as weddings, birthday and retirement parties, and for-profit company social events are not eligible. Alcohol is not allowed on the premises.
Rental fees are assessed on three levels:
- Youth Group
For more information, call (863) 519-1041, or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
The facilities at the Extension Service division host close to 50,000 visitors each year, including two major events:
Polk County Youth Fair: The Polk County Youth Fair, Inc., is one of the largest exhibitions of youth agricultural, horticultural, and consumer sciences projects in the Southeast United States that does not include a commercialized midway with vendors and rides. The focus is on agricultural literacy, education, and achievement recognition for students ages 8-18. Members of 4-H, FFA, and FCCLA (Family, Career, and Community Leaders of America) are eligible to participate.
Polk County Agri-Fest: Agri-Fest invites close to 6,000 4th grade students and 300 teachers each year to learn about local agricultural commodities and how agriculture impacts their daily lives. Agri-Fest is a partnership between the Extension office, Polk County Farm Bureau, Polk County Schools, and local agriculture industry leaders.
Phone: (863) 519-1041
Toll Free: (800) 780-5346
1702 S. Holland Parkway
Bartow, FL 33830
Office Hours of Operation:
Monday through Friday
8 a.m. to 5 p.m.