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ALTOONA

Training for the Master Gardener Volunteer Program for Eau Claire County is set to begin March 17, 2016 at the UW-Extension Eau Claire County office in Altoona.

Trainings take place from 1 p.m. to 4 p.m. every week on Thursdays until May 19, 2016. After completing the training, each participant is eligible to become a certified Master Gardener Volunteer by providing 24 volunteer hours with UW-Extension approved projects each year.

Training focuses on how to assist the general public with common garden related questions at the Ask-A-Master Gardener Booth during the Farmer's Market. In addition, volunteers learn about other UW-Extension horticulture volunteer needs such as the summer youth garden program.

Course topics include: pest management, lawn and tree care, and other general gardening practices. Volunteers also enjoy learning from each other, University of Wisconsin specialists, and assisting the public with garden related questions.

To be considered for this volunteer program each person must pass a background check, have their application approved, and sign a volunteer agreement. Previous gardening experience isn't necessary.

The fee for this training is $100 per person to pay for training materials. A limited number of scholarships are available. Seating is limited and the registration deadline is Feb. 29, 2016. Participants must be at least 18 years old.

For more information and a registration packet visit www.tiny.cc/EauClaireMGV or contact the extension office at 715-839-4712.

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