County Barn Rep Meeting this Month
Please join us on Saturday, February 24th from 10 a.m. - Noon for the next IBF County Rep meeting. The meeting will be held at the Indiana Farm Bureau offices in Bloomington, Monroe County. The office is at 1618 W. Third Street, not far east from I-69/Hwy. 37 off the Third Street exit.
Tim Sheets will be giving a demo of the new barn surveying app. Following the demo he will guide everyone through the process of loading the app onto your Apple device (iPhone or iPad). Not only is it helpful to receive the how-to tutorial and be able to ask questions, there is also a bit more involved to loading the app than just going to the Apple Store and getting it.
If you are interested in surveying barns in your county but don’t have an Apple device, please consider coming anyway. It is a good opportunity to connect with fellow County Reps and be able to discuss the surveying process. And the IBF board wants to look into funding for the purchase of iPads that can be loaned out. So having received the how-to in person will be beneficial even if you won’t be surveying for awhile.
If the February meeting doesn’t work for you, the next County Rep meeting where we will again focus on the surveying app is tentatively scheduled for April 7th in Carroll County. Having heard from at least County Rep who can’t attend either meeting, we will continue to look for ways to get the information to all who are interested.
What Else Can County Representatives Do?
There are a number of actions that County Reps can undertake to help promote the saving of old barns. Think creatively and proactively about what will work for you and your county. The following are a few ideas:
1) Create a Facebook Page or Group or both - The Barns of Monroe County Page was created initially to help promote the barn tour but continues to be a means of promoting barns and things associated with barns including IBF news. The Group page for Historic Barns of Morgan County was created as a more private conversational tool to form a network of folks within the county. Group members can share items and converse about issues in an easier format than long email threads.
2) Connect with your local Purdue Extension Office and Indiana Farm Bureau office - Some of us have had great receptions from both entities as both work every day with farmers, barn owners and folks in the rural areas of the state. Speaking at least for Monroe County, representatives in both offices were excited to learn that IBF existed (that message still needs to be spread first) and were then more than happy to assist with the barn tour first and then in other ways they could later. These folks can also be great contacts when you do want to start surveying or take on any other public activities.
3) Be a Guest Speaker - Local groups like Rotary, Kiwanis, Lions and others are always in need of monthly speakers. A short program about IBF and your efforts to save barns on a local level might just reach the right business and community leaders to launch greater efforts, whether its in the form of recruiting others interested in helping or in finding financial sponsors for projects that require financial support. It may also help build the IBF membership; building the health and visibility of IBF is critical to all the work we want to do on a county level.
4) Create a Display for Public Events - A display about IBF and saving old barns in your county can be useful in helping spread the message for you. Your county fair is one location, perhaps in partnership with another like-minded group or two. But public libraries, courthouses, city halls, historical societies and other entities are all candidates for agreeing to house your display, at least for a time. Public events, like July 4th celebrations, are also a possibility where a display could be used.
What have you been doing in your county? Please share with everyone on the IBF website Forum under County Reps.
IBF Website News
The list of barn contractors has been updated on the IBF website. Go to the “More” link at the top right of the Home page. Additional names will be added soon such as for those who do site consultation and National Register nominations.