By John L. Ross / Staff Writer
Whitley County has a new extension agent.
Garrard Coffey, 31, a Jackson County native and resident, took the helm Monday and has already done a little “touring” along Whitley County and Williamsburg.
“We had a good tour,” Coffey said, adding he did a walk-through of the Whitley County Court House and the Williamsburg City Hall. “I talked to all of them.”
Coffey comes from a long line of farmers.
“I have a strong farm background,” Coffey said. He’s had hands-on experience in many types of farm and agriculture life, including cattle, horses and tobacco.
He said he currently lives on and runs a farm in Jackson County, where he raises beef cattle, hay and horses.
Coffey graduated from Eastern Kentucky University in Richmond in 2004 — he also graduated from Jackson County High School.
“I have a long family history (in farming),” Coffey said. “My grandfather bought the farm I have now in 1965 — so I’m the third generation on this farm.”
He added that his great-grandfather had a large farm in another part of Jackson County.
Until two years ago, Coffey said his farm also grew tobacco, and he remembered that in the 1980s there was a dairy.
His brother, David Coffey, and his father, Danny Coffey, also run the family farm.
Garrard Coffey said he’s got an acre dedicated to another purpose this year.
“We’re growing a garden,” he said, adding that in previous seasons he’s grown produce to sell, including sweet corn and pumpkins.
Of course, Whitley County Extension promotes the county Farmer’s Market, which is held 8 a.m.-1 p.m. every Saturday from May through October behind the extension office. That address is 4275 North U.S. 25W in Williamsburg.
This year was the first time a Farmer’s Market was set up in downtown Corbin, behind the TImes Tribune building. According to the extension office’s website, on June 19 they began offering a Farmer’s Market from 3-6 p.m. Wednesdays.
For more information about the Whitley County Extension Office and available programs, call (606) 549-1430.