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The Wisconsin Cranberry School is the primary meeting for Wisconsin cranberry growers, whether members of a cooperative or independent growers. The school is sponsored by the University of Wisconsin-Extension and the Wisconsin State Cranberry Growers Association.
The Wisconsin Cranberry School had its beginnings in the late 1950's under the direction of Professor George Klingbeil. He sought to educate cranberry growers as a group about new production practices and new pest management products. Initial meetings were held in the auditorium of the Wood County Courthouse with an attendance of about 50 growers. Over time the meetings moved to the auditorium of the McMillan Library in Wisconsin Rapids then to the Mead Inn and later to the Stevens Point Holiday Inn as attendance increased. At its peak, attendance exceeded 450 including growers from other states and Canada.
Publication of school proceedings began in 1990 as a means to provide growers with a record of the presentations they had heard. This also allowed the Wisconsin Cranberry School to be a primary source of information about cranberry production not only to Wisconsin growers, but to growers and researchers throughout North America. The proceedings gave researchers a means to get initial research into the hands of growers without jeopardizing later peer reviewed publication. Further, this provided a means to publish data that was not destined for the larger scientific literature.
Providing the proceedings in a searchable format allows growers, researchers and others interested in cranberry production to find relevant information without reading the table of contents for each volume. This searchable format enhances the value of the Proceedings as a primary source of information about cranberry production and makes it available to the public at large.
The UW-Madison Libraries developed this project in collaboration with Teryl Roper, Professor of Horticulture and Extension Fruit Crop Specialist at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, who instigated the proceedings in 1990 and has served as editor since. Since Wisconsin is the leading producer of cranberries in the world, Professor Roper desires that Wisconsin also becomes the leading source of information about cranberry production.
Steenbock Memorial Library oversaw digitization of the Proceedings as a component of the AgNIC American Cranberry website. AgNIC (or Agriculture Network Information Center), is a guide to quality agricultural information on the Internet as selected by the National Agricultural Library, Land-Grant Universities, and other institutions.
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