Star Files She’s in the band! Broadway alum Jenn Gambatese begins performances in Andrew Lloyd Webber’s School of Rock—The Musical on August 9. She succeeds Sierra Boggess as Principal Rosalie Mullins; Boggess played her final performance on August 8 before departing for Paris, France to play Christine Daaé in the Tony-winning composer’s The Phantom of the Opera. Gambatese originated the Broadway roles of Jane in Tarzan and Natalie in All Shook Up, played Glinda in the first national tour of Wicked and was also on Broadway in Hairspray, Is He Dead?, A Year with Frog and Toad and Footloose.Currently in performances at the Winter Garden Theatre, School of Rock is based on the 2003 film of the same name, featuring music from the movie, as well as an original score by Lloyd Webber, lyrics by Glenn Slater, a book by Julian Fellowes and direction by Laurence Connor. The show follows Dewey Finn, a failed, wannabe rock star who decides to earn a few extra bucks by posing as a substitute teacher at a prestigious prep school. There he turns a class of straight-A students into a guitar-shredding, bass-slapping, mind-blowing rock band. While teaching these pint-sized prodigies what it means to truly rock, Dewey falls for the school’s beautiful, but uptight headmistress, helping her rediscover the wild child within.The cast also currently includes Alex Brightman, Spencer Moses and Mamie Parris. Show Closed This production ended its run on Jan. 20, 2019 Jenn Gambatese Jenn Gambatese School of Rock – The Musical Related Shows View Comments
It’s still too early for precise figures, but Georgia blueberrygrowers estimate at least a 15-percent crop loss as a result ofthe recent freeze.”It will take another couple of weeks to really see thefull damage because the flowers still have to open,” saidRusty Bell, president of the Georgia Blueberry Growers Association.”Then we’ll be able to see how much damage has been done.And when we harvest, we’ll know a lot more, too.”Georgia growers begin harvesting their earliest varieties ofsouthern highbush blueberries as early as mid-April and May. Themain harvest of rabbiteye blueberries, the later varieties, startsin June.Growers Make More on Early BerriesThough the actual damage isn’t known, Bell does know the freezewill hit growers’ wallets. “The main fruit we lost,”he said, “is from our early varieties when the fruit sellsfor $3 to $4 a pound. For the rest of the season, the fruit sellsfor 70 cents a pound.”Georgia’s blueberry crop is in the southeastern counties ofPierce, Bacon, Appling, Clinch and Ware. With 30 percent to 40percent of the crop sold on the fresh market, most berries aresold frozen.”Our berries, both fresh and frozen, are shipped all overthe United States and outside,” he said. “Japan is areally big fresh buyer, and we’re trying to open up some marketsin Taiwan.”The freeze seems to have spared Florida and North Carolinablueberries, Bell said, either because it didn’t get as cold asin Georgia or the plants weren’t flowering yet.The flower holds the key. If the plant’s bloom dies, the fruitdies with it.Planning for Freezing TemperaturesGrowers can take precautionary measures against potential freezes.But this one hit too hard.”A light freeze of 26 degrees or so we can prepare for,but not one in the teens,” Bell said. “Usually the coldwill just affect pollination. But this freeze killed everythingdown inside the bud.”Given enough notice, growers use frost protection to preparefor freezes. Through sprinklers, they spray plants with a quarter-inchof water per hour or more.”This sounds odd, but as ice forms it heats up the plant,”Bell said. “As long as water is continually applied and freezesto form clear ice, the plant temperature will remain around 28to 32. However, this approach can only be used when there is nowind, or for temperatures in the low 20s.”Of Georgia’s 4,500 acres of blueberry plants, 200 acres aresouthern highbush varieties and the rest rabbiteye types. Thesouthern highbush plants were hit hardest because they bloom first.”Rabbiteyes like Tifblue and Brightwell saw just a smallamount of damage because they flower a little later,” Bellsaid. “Only about 20 percent of the whole rabbiteye cropwas hurt.”New UGA Variety Bred to Bloom LaterBell says blueberry growers need a variety that flowers laterbut still matures early. Alapaha, a new University of Georgiaand U.S. Department of Agriculture rabbiteye introduction, isjust that.”This new variety blooms 10 days later than Climax, themost popular early-season rabbiteye,” said Scott NeSmith,a horticulturist with the UGA College of Agricultural and EnvironmentalSciences. “Ten days doesn’t sound like a long time. But itcan make all the difference in the world when a freeze hits.””Everyone I’ve talked to is excited about the new release,”Bell said. “It sounds good, but we want to get a couple ofrows in and treat them like real farm plants and see for ourselves.Field conditions with commercial picking will be the real tests.”
Volume XXXINumber 1Page 6 By George BoyhanUniversity of GeorgiaMany of the vegetables we grow and eat rely on insects forpollination. Cucumbers are among these vegetables, along withsquash, cantaloupe, watermelon and others. If the part of the vegetable plant we harvest is the fruit,there’s a good chance insects are needed for pollination.One exception would be sweet corn. With corn, we eat the fruit(the ear), but these are pollinated by the wind. That’s why sweetcorn should be planted in blocks of four to five rows so there’senough pollen for pollination. A single row of sweet corn willhave very poor pollination.Insects must visit most flowers several times for the fruit todevelop properly. Watermelon and cucumber plants will often havebottlenecked fruit if pollination is incomplete.Insects criticalFor proper pollination, insects are critical. In the past, we’verelied on honeybees for pollination. But wild honeybees are hardto find these days because of mites that parasitize the colonies.Beekeepers are able to treat the bees for these problems, butwild bee colonies die out during the winter because theseparasites have weakened them.Some cucumbers are truly seedless. These are usually grown ingreenhouses and are often seen in supermarkets as long, slendercucumbers wrapped in plastic.This type of cucumber can develop without pollination. Butbecause it has a very tender skin, it’s not grown outdoors. If itwere grown near seeded cucumbers it would be pollinated anddevelop seed. In this case, that’s not what you want to happen.Two cukesTwo broad groups of cucumbers are grown in gardens. One is theslicing type, which is eaten fresh. They have a slightly thickerskin and should have a fresh, light taste.Pickling cucumbers are generally more warty, with a thin skinthat allows it to take in the brine and vinegar solutions used inpickling. These cukes are usually shorter than slicers and lookstubby in some cases. Both types are available as seed andseedlings for your garden.For these types of cucumbers and similar vegetables, there’s notmuch you can do about the lack of honeybees in home gardens. Youcan, however, encourage other pollinating insects to visit yourgarden. Keep a ready supply of nectar-producing flowers andshrubs.Don’t use insecticides when these insects are present. Usually,most pollination occurs in the morning and during sunny days. Ifyou’re going to use them, follow label directions. And use themlater in the day or on overcast days, when pollinating insectsare less likely to be around.(George Boyhan is a Cooperative Extension horticulturist withthe University of Georgia College of Agricultural andEnvironmental Sciences.)
By Brad HaireUniversity of GeorgiaIf your child is being bullied, you can do some things to help stop it.Everyone will be bullied sometime in his life, said Sharon Gibson, a family and consumer science educator with the University of Georgia Cooperative Extension. And it will most likely happen at school.Bullying can come in many forms. It can include physical or emotional abuse, damage to a child’s property, spreading malicious rumors or forcing a child to do something he or she doesn’t want to do.A consistently bullied student can have emotional problems and perform poorly in school. And if the bullying is physical, it can take its toll on the student’s body.Don’t ignore the problem. And don’t tell your child to ignore the bully.”When a child is bullied, he or she may feel angry, helpless or deserted,” Gibson said. “If that child tells a teacher or parent about the bullying, he or she needs to know it’s not tattling and that speaking about it was the right thing.”Parents can become angry when they first learn their child is being bullied. “Parents should stay calm and first find out if their child is in any immediate physical danger,” she said.The most important thing to do is find a way to stop the bullying. Ask for a meeting with the principal of your child’s school. The principal can then determine if and when to bring the child’s teacher or teachers into the conversation.”Again, parents should stay calm. If they’re not, this could set up a defensive action by school officials,” she said. “Parents should be proactive but not demanding before they learn more about the situation at school.”Teachers and principals are trained to deal with issues like bullying, she said. So voice your concerns, but listen, too.Most schools have an action plan to deal with bully situations. If the school doesn’t, offer to help develop a plan.The child doing the bullying should be given a chance to reform.The child who is being bullied should have an adult contact at school to tell if the bullying doesn’t stop. This person could be the teacher or a paraprofessional.A lot going is on in the average classroom, Gibson said. Teachers or paraprofessionals can have their hands full all day. It can be tough to concentrate on one child.Gibson recommends a code word be established for the bullied child to use when he or she feels uncomfortable or in danger due to bullying. This will inform the adult without the child having to raise a hand or bring much attention.The adult can then investigate or even witness the bullying.Follow up with the school to make sure steps are in place to keep your child and all children from being bullied. You can also:* Make sure the school has good monitoring.* Keep records of bullying episodes and of any communication with the school.* Work with other parents in the neighborhood to make sure children are supervised and feel safe.At home, Gibson said, encourage good social skills and behavior. Help your child find his or her talents, and praise accomplishments.”A confident, assertive child is less likely to be the target of a bully,” she said.
By Stephanie SchupskaUniversity of GeorgiaWhen University of Georgia entomology professor Wayne Berisford travels to the north Georgia mountains for research these days, he’s got a lot less shade to hide under when he steps beneath a hemlock tree.The damage isn’t due to clear cutting or development. One tiny insect, the hemlock woolly adelgid, is to blame. The aphid-like pest is quickly killing hemlocks in the South.“The hemlock is a pretty unique tree,” Berisford said. “It will grow in dense shade. It grows well in poor soil by mountain streams and cools the streams for trout. They’re just really beautiful trees and a really important component of the mountains.”A hemlock’s death isn’t spectacular. The first evidence that it’s even infested with adelgids is that it doesn’t get much annual growth. It starts to lose its needles, its crown thins, and it looks gray.Hemlock woolly adelgids “eat the tree’s starch found in its needles and twigs,” Berisford said. The insect first appeared in the eastern United States in Roanoke, Va., in the 1950s. It stayed around there until the late 1980s, when it started north.In the northern U.S., mature hemlocks live seven to 10 years after they’ve been infested. But in the South, death comes more quickly.“The adelgid crossed the river from South Carolina in 2003,” Berisford said, “and we’ve seen a lot of tree mortality already.”Combating adelgidsHe and other scientists in the UGA College of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences and the U. S. Forest Service are working to stop the mass destruction. They’re conducting two studies now to see if different control approaches are effective.The first involves releasing predacious ladybird beetles into infested hemlock stands. This type of beetle has one specific food source: the woolly adelgid. The only problem is that they must be mature enough to both eat the adelgids and reproduce to sustain the beetle population.“As soon as ladybird beetle eggs hatch, the larvae feed on the eggs and young of the adelgids,” Berisford said. “For adult beetles, the eggs are a particularly high nutrient source.”In the second study, the researchers are injecting insecticide into the soil around the hemlocks. The trees then take up the insecticide through its roots, killing the adelgids. This experiment is being conducted specifically along streams to see if any chemical residue is harming delicate aquatic organisms.“Treatments took place on Nov. 1, 2005, and as of July 2006, we haven’t detected any major changes in the aquatic invertebrate community,” said Missy Churchel, an aquatic entomologist at UGA. She travels to the forest every two weeks to collect samples.At the UGA Mountain Research and Education Center in Blairsville, entomologist Kris Braman is researching ways to chemically control adelgids in commercial and home landscapes.“We want to find the safest, quickest control method,” she said. “Hemlocks are found more in home landscapes in north Georgia, but a lot of Georgians in the metro area are interested in our work because they own property in North Carolina near the Smoky Mountains where there are older, huge hemlocks.”This fall Berisford plans to begin a project revolving around rearing predacious beetles, especially ones native to the western U.S.A hemlock’s valueIn the past, hemlock was used for lumber, or the bark was used to tan skins. Its aesthetic value far outweighs any other value now. Berisford said many homeowners deeply treasure the trees.In fact, one couple approached him at a meeting about the problem and donated $20,000 toward adelgid research.The interest doesn’t stop with landowners. Support for UGA’s effort comes from Georgia Power Company, two divisions of the U.S. Forest Service, the Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service, Georgia Forestry Commission and the Georgia Department of Natural Resources. Several conservation groups, particularly Georgia Forestwatch and the Georgia Wildlife Federation, are raising funds for the project.“It’s a big deal because nobody wants to see the hemlocks die,” Berisford said.
By Faith PeppersUniversity of GeorgiaWeeks of unseasonably warm weather in Georgia followed by a week of near- and below-freezing temperatures could be a deadly combination for early spring blooms in the south.“Most fruit and nut flower buds can tolerate temperatures slightly below freezing (1-2 degrees),” said David Berle, a University of Georgia horticulture professor. “But it all depends on the stage of development and the microclimate,” or local conditions.Ice can actually work as an insulator for buds. “As long as it is raining, the ‘heat’ given off by water freezing actually protects flower buds to certain point, much like irrigation of the crops would do,” Berle explained.But too many hours of hard freeze can spell doom for spring blooms, although it’s very hard to tell at this point what damage will be done, he said. “If it gets to 20 degrees, it could be serious,” Berle said. “If it gets to 27 degrees, it is likely not to be a problem, but each site is different.”The worst freezes come on cold, windy nights when a front is moving in and temperatures drop rapidly.Some woody ornamentals like azaleas may survive the freeze. “Azaleas are not as far along as most fruit crops, and in a dormant stage they are fairly cold tolerant,” Berle said. There isn’t much homeowners can do to protect fragile plants, which is why it is so important to use landscape plants that match the hardiness zone they live in. “Landscape plants hardy for this area have a great capacity to make it through freezes and frosts,” Berle said. “Typically, it is only those actually blooming at the time for the freeze or frost that suffer.” Mulching material like pine straw layered 2 to 4 inches thick can be effective to keep ice off tender buds and pansy blooms, but should be pushed back when temperatures rise to allow the soil to warm up.“It’s kind of hard for homeowners to do anything about freezing plants,” Berle said. “Covering plants with fabric only provides a few degrees of protection, and then only if well-covered. Plastic works as well for a few degrees, but must be removed before the sun comes out and ‘bakes’ the plants underneath.”Berle adds that most plants can endure frost better than freezes. Frost occurs on a clear nights as heat radiates from surfaces to the sky. When the temperature drops below 32 degrees, water vapor freezes on surfaces like blades of grass, flower blooms and your car windshield. Freezing, on the other hand, usually accompanies a cold front moving in with freezing temperatures, wind and sometimes rain. For advice on protecting landscape plants from frost and freeze or a list of the best plants for your hardiness zone, contact your local UGA Cooperative Extension agent at 1-800-ASK-UGA1 or online at www.ugaextension.com.
An empty storefront on the market square in downtown Zebulon, Ga., is being eyed as the place where local agricultural crop diversity meets entrepreneurial product creativity.The business network is in place and the blueprints are laid out for what would be Pike County’s first incubator kitchen – a shared facility designed for small-scale food businesses that may be stymied by regulations and can’t afford the more expensive commercial kitchen equipment.Funding neededOne piece of the puzzle, however, is still missing: adequate finances needed to get the incubator off the ground.“We envision this incubator kitchen to be the place where our farmers and entrepreneurs can take local farm crops and develop them into value-added products that can be sold to farmers markets, consumers, businesses and caterers in the area,” said Chris Curry, executive director of the Pike County Agribusiness Authority. “But the economic downturn kind of spoiled our plans, but we are not giving up.”Despite the bend in the road, Curry said, the county has helped farmers develop value-added items to meet consumer demand for locally grown products. Pike County is considered part of the Atlanta Metropolitan Statistical Area. For two years, the Pike County Agribusiness Authority has forged ahead with the aid of an $8,400 Sustainable Agriculture Research & Education, or SARE, Sustainable Community Innovation Grant.“It’s a chicken or egg thing. You need the infrastructure to attract farmers, and you have to have the farmers to support the infrastructure,” Curry said. “That’s why getting this SARE grant was so important. It really raised the visibility of agriculture and gave us a lot of leverage in the eyes of people who were skeptical about the sustainable-organic business model.”Network of local producersFor starters, the Pike County Agribusiness Authority created a network of entrepreneurs interested in value-added production — everything from jellies to baskets to butter to sauces and baked goods. The group was then walked through the process of starting a new food business. A University of Georgia Small Business Development representative helped create and develop business plans, financial ideas and marketing skills. In addition, the group attended the “Starting a New Food Business” class offered by the UGA College of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences to learn about the laws and regulations of the food industry in Georgia. Lastly, the group was introduced to ways to produce and market products, one of which could be via an incubator kitchen.“We were watching farmers at the seasonal local farmers market leave with all of this extra product and no other outlet to sell it. So we wanted to come up with a way for them to create value-added products that they could sell and add to their bottom line,” said Anna Evans, project manager for the SARE grant.Wednesday marketOne offshoot of that idea became the Wednesday Market, a year-round farmers market offering locally grown products from local farmers. Buyers shop online, then pick up their orders every Wednesday.“Since Wednesday Market launched in January, we’ve put $8,000 in farmers’ pockets, and we are just now entering the summer season with vegetables,” Evans said. “In addition to the Market on the Square, Wednesday Market provides an additional outlet for farmers to showcase their products, and they can sell them during the week and during winter.”With more than three dozen agricultural crops, ranging from fruits and vegetables to aquaculture and livestock to timber, and an average farm size of 134 acres, Curry said Pike County can capitalize on diversification, agritourism and value-added production.Evans sees a bigger picture.“My total dream is for the southern crescent of Atlanta to become the epicenter of sustainable and organic farming,” Evans said.
Asparagus demonstrates what Mother Nature can do with a plant. By planting asparagus only one time, the plants will continue to produce for many years to come. A vegetable garden in Vermont has had the same producing asparagus bed for more than100 years.February is the best month for planting asparagus. Crowns not seed are used to establish asparagus, so check with area garden centers early in case the crowns need to be ordered.A soil test should be taken to determine fertilizer and lime needs in your garden plot. If adding lime to raise the pH level, it should be plowed in before the crop is planted. This is especially important for perennials such as asparagus since the soil once the bed is established it should not be disturbed again.Asparagus crowns that are one year old are best to use when establishing a bed. Be sure to add organic matter such as animal manure or compost. Adding the appropriate amount of commercial fertilizer will pay good dividends. Use 50 pounds of 6-12-12 or 5-10-15 per 1,000 square feet before setting crowns. Annual split applications of 6-12-12 or 5-10-15 at the rate of 1 to 2 pounds per 100 square feet should be adequate to keep asparagus actively growing.The plant is dioecious, which means the male flowers are on one plant and the female flowers are on a separate plant. The green foliage is fern-like and produces excess food that is stored in the fleshy storage roots. The spears, which develop in early summer, are doing so at the expense of this stored food. For this reason, the harvest season should be regulated to allow sufficient time for the plant to replace this stored food.
South Georgia foresters and landowners connected to the $600 million per year forestry industry will now receive better guidance from University of Georgia Extension agents thanks to a recently held UGA forestry and fisheries management training course. The UGA Warnell School of Forestry and Natural Resources collaborated with the College of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences to present the two-day training, held Sept. 25-26 in Tifton. The course served as a training guide for agents who receive daily calls from landowners and timber producers trying to enhance timber production. David Moorhead, professor of silviculture — the branch of forestry charged with the development and care of forests — at the Warnell School, said UGA Extension agents most often field calls from landowners concerned about dying trees and planting new ones.“For the forestry side, we’re looking at forest health issues. [Landowners] have questions about herbicide use for planted pines. Lots of questions come in for management of ponds and fisheries, too,” Moorhead said.Moorhead, who also co-directs the UGA Center for Invasive Species and Ecosystem Health in Tifton, was one of six instructors who taught the 41 south Georgia agents in attendance. A similar training session will be held for north Georgia agents in the near future.Fellow UGA Warnell School professors Jay Shelton, Kris Irwin, David Dickens and Ben Jackson joined Moorhead in the training sessions, as did Gary Burtle, an associate professor in CAES’s Department of Animal and Dairy Sciences on the Tifton campus, who helped address fisheries management.Forestry and related products generated $609 million in 2012, with 86 percent of that revenue coming from timber production, according to the UGA Center for Agribusiness and Economic Development.“Pulp prices, especially, have been much better over the last year and a half. We’ve got a lot of people that have been out there thinning their pine stands,” said Ronnie Barentine, UGA Extension county coordinator and agricultural and natural resources agent for Dooly County. “Having that knowledge and going out there and helping a landowner determine when it’s the best time to thin out their timber is a really good part of that training.”According to the Georgia Department of Natural Resources, there are 500,000 acres of fishing impoundments in Georgia. To better meet landowners’ needs, Irwin said Extension agents must understand landowners’ objectives in managing their local ponds.“Do they want trophy bass? Do they want to catch bluegill? How does the landowner envision a successful fishing trip? From there, they can begin to develop a management strategy that will produce those results,” Irwin said.Proper pond management involves more than just walking up to and looking at a pond, he continued.“You’ve got to do multiple things: electrofishing and seining to evaluate fish, evaluating water quality, talking with landowners and finding out the history of the stocking of the pond,” Irwin said. “It’s important for agents to understand it is a complex system. You can’t just look at a few of the variables. You have to gather a lot of information.”Pond management also involves the identification and treatment of aquatic weeds, a regular part of Thomas County agriculture and natural resources agent Andrew Sawyer’s daily tasks.“We’re always identifying weeds in the pond, and we’re always looking at weed control options,” Sawyer said.To receive free forestry and fishery related advice, contact your local UGA Extension office by calling 1-800-ASK-UGA1.
Meat and Seafood: Grassfed New York Strip Steak, Hunter Cattle Company, Del Ferguson, Brooklet. Showcase events like the 2015 Flavor of Georgia competition help entrepreneurs spread the word about their products. Many have landed spots in regional and national grocery chains like Whole Foods, Fresh Market, Earth Fare, Kroger and Harvey’s. Beverages: Paulk’s Pride 100% Purple Muscadine Juice, Muscadine Products Corporation, Erin Boettger, Wray. The reduction was one of 30 Georgia products selected as finalists from the more than 100 entries from across the state submitted to the 2015 Flavor of Georgia Food Product Contest. Georgia Department of Agriculture Commissioner Gary Black and College of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences Dean and Director J. Scott Angle announced the category and grand prize winners as part of Georgia Agriculture Awareness Day at the Georgia Freight Depot in Atlanta. Winners received membership in the state department of agriculture’s Georgia Grown program. All winners and finalists earn the right to have their products stamped with the 2015 Flavor of Georgia logo and gain exposure to grocery buyers and food industry professionals who judge the final round of the contest. Food industry experts, including grocery buyers, food service personnel and agricultural marketing executives, rated Alta Cucina Italia’s Balsamico al Mirtillo and the other products based on innovation, use of Georgia theme, market potential and flavor. In addition to the grand prize, A&A Alta Cucina Italia Balsamico al Mirtillo also received the category award for best salsa, chutney or condiment. Barbecue Sauces: Causey’s Hot BBQ Sauce, Causey Foods Inc., Wynn Causey Bakke, Smyrna. (The sauce was created in Vienna where the Causeys still operate a restaurant.) People’s Choice Award: Wisham Jellies, Cranberry Pepper Jelly, Eric Wisham, Tifton. “Though hundreds of food products have come through the Flavor of Georgia contest since 2007, Georgians just keep coming up with a new ‘crop’ of excellent entries each year,” said Sharon P. Kane, Flavor of Georgia contest coordinator. The Flavor of Georgia food product contest is sponsored by the UGA College of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences Center for Agribusiness and Economic Development in partnership with the Georgia Center of Innovation for Agribusiness, the Office of the Governor, Walton EMC, the Georgia Department of Agriculture and the Georgia Agribusiness Council. Miscellaneous: Georgia Wildflower Honeycomb, Zeigler’s Honey Company, Robert Edmondson, Stockton. Jams and Jellies: Strawberry Lavender Jam, Fairywood Thicket Farm, Kim and John Conner, Fairburn. Adriana Coppola, a native Italian now living in Johns Creek, won the grand prize in the University of Georgia’s 2015 Flavor of Georgia Food Product Contest with her A&A Alta Cucina Italia Balsamico al Mirtillo, a blueberry balsamic vinegar reduction. The awards are listed below by prize name, product name, company name, company representative and town. Snack Foods: Savannah Snaps, Verdant Kitchen, Ross Harding, Savannah. Confections: Georgia Peach Cookies, Byrd Cookie Company, Geoff Repella, Savannah. Salsas, Chutneys and Condiments: Balsamico Al Mirtillo, A&A Alta Cucina Italia, Adriana Coppola, Johns Creek. Marinades and Sauces: Tybee Island Coastal Blend, The Salt Table, Carol and Dave Legasse, Pooler. Coppola launched Alta Cucina, her line of authentic Italian gourmet products, to celebrate family traditions and love for fresh ingredients, which she learned from her parents, she said. The annual contest, conducted by the UGA Center for Agribusiness and Economic Development, is a chance for food businesses to showcase their new products. In addition to the grand prize, judges awarded prizes in each food product category. A people’s choice award was given based on votes cast during a public tasting Tuesday morning. Dairy Products: Get Back Jack Pimento Cheese, Proper Pepper, Deanna Bibb, Sandersville. More information about this year’s contest can be found at www.flavorofga.com or on Twitter @Flavor_of_GA. For more photos of this year’s Flavor of Georgia contest, see http://www.flickr.com/photos/ugacommunications/sets.