CHARLESTON, W.Va. — The Rock Valley Farm, Triadelphia, was awarded second place in the West Virginia Conservation Farm Contest at the 2008 West Virginia Conservation Partnership Conference.
Farm owners Bill and Janet Childers, along with their daughter and son-in-law, Amy and Scott Wade, co-operators of the farm, were in competition with six other farms throughout the state.
In order to get to the state competition, the family won first place in a rigorous county, district and area competition.
The Rock Valley Farm is part of the Northern Panhandle Conservation District. The Childers have been cooperators with the district since 1977 and have been active in the USDA-NRCS EQIP Program, the W.Va. Lime Incentives Program and have participated in the district equipment lease program.
Mr. Childers is a member of the Farm Bureau, serving as secretary and is on the board of directors. He has also been a 4-H leader and is a member of the Ohio County 4-H Foundation.
Mrs. Childers is also a Farm Bureau member, a member and current vice president of the Dallas Community Education Outreach Service and has served as a 4-H leader.
The Wades are members of the Farm Bureau, former 4-H members and counselors at the Ohio County 4-H camp. Mrs. Wade is also former W.Va. dairy princess, an alumnus of the W.Va. State Dairy Judging Team and a former 4-H exchange student.
The Rock Valley Farm consists of 150 acres and hosts sheep and beef cattle.
The Childers and Wades practice rotational grazing, brush management (both mechanical and chemical), nutrient management based on a nutrient management plan, current soil tests, stockpiled forage, waste utilization, timber stand improvement, land clearing, pasture and hay land planting, reclaimed old road ways, pasture division fencing and use exclusion fencing.
There are six spring developments, livestock watering troughs, a pond, diversion ditch and slip repairs.
The Childers have demonstrated they are excellent stewards of the land in that they are restoring one of the oldest family farms in the area. They have become the sixth generation of the family to own and operate the farm.
The Childers family was selected in 2007 for the W.Va. Farming Heritage Award for their commitment to the rural lifestyle and for serving as role models to the others in the state.