At'l Do Farms Corn Maze Features Seal of Cotton

Friday, September 8, 2017                            By Mary Jane Buerkle

      James and Patti Simpson are celebrating cotton in a whole new way this year, making the Seal of Cotton the theme of their family's ever-popular corn maze.

      The At'l Do Farms Corn Maze, located just east of Shallowater, has an intricate pattern cut into a corn field to entertain thousands of visitors each year. Past mazes have paid tribute to farming, Texas Tech, Lubbock, and other things that are meaningful to the Simpson family and to the region.

      "I've been thinking about the (Seal of Cotton) for several years, and I've always wanted to do a cotton maze," Patti Simpson said. "Toward the end of last season, people started asking us, 'what are you going to do next year?' To me, it was obvious. It was time for the cotton seal."

      The Simpsons contacted Steve Verett at PCG to ask how to obtain permission to use the Seal of Cotton, and Verett directed them to Cotton Incorporated, where officials helped them through the process. They then contacted the company that helps them draw out their mazes, and after a few additions to make the maze a bit more challenging, it was ready to cut. The Simpsons cut the corn maze themselves, and Patti Simpson said the cutting process takes about three days to complete.

      "To me, when you think about Lubbock, you think about cotton and agriculture in general," Patti Simpson said, noting that both her and James' families have a long heritage of growing cotton and other crops. Her father, Doyce Middlebrook, has served on several cotton-related boards.

      Patti Simpson said although the corn maze usually is surrounded by cotton fields, adding to the atmosphere around harvest time, this year much of that cotton unfortunately was hailed out in July.

      "We were expecting cotton fields all around us, but instead we'll have cotton on one side and corn on the others," she said. "But we know farmers have to be diverse, and being able to represent agriculture is the main goal for us."

      Verett said this is a unique and very much appreciated nod to the importance and the history of cotton in this area.

      "We want to thank James and Patti and the Simpson family for providing this incredible agritourism venue, and especially for featuring the Seal of Cotton in this year's maze," Verett said. "Year after year, The Maize doesn't disappoint in being a fun, family-friendly activity that helps promote agriculture in an entertaining and creative way."

      In a neat coincidence, the At'l Do Farms Corn Maze opens Saturday, September 16, the same day as the sixth annual Celebrate Cotton game at Texas Tech. It will be open Tuesday through Friday from 6-9 p.m., Saturday from 10 a.m.-9 p.m., and Sunday from 2 p.m.-9 p.m. It is closed on Monday. Admission is $10/person, and free for children 4 and under. For more information and to see an aerial photo of the maze, visit




6th Annual

Celebrate Cotton Game

Saturday, Sept. 16

7 p.m.

Texas Tech Red Raiders

Arizona State Sun Devils


Special Promo Code



Cotton Incorporated, Bloomingdale's Launch

First 60-Second, Shoppable Fashion Show

Thursday, September 7, 2017             From The Cotton Board

       Cotton Incorporated is innovating the consumer shopping experience and driving cotton demand by making it easier than ever to shop cotton looks right off the runway. Cotton Incorporated and Bloomingdales have teamed up to launch the first ever 60-second, shoppable digital fashion show ( On September 7th, consumers can watch the interactive fashion show video, select outfits, and purchase the cotton clothing featured with just a few clicks.

      "Consumers today are seeking style and comfort in their clothing and convenience in their shopping experience - a combination that's not always easy to find," said Kim Kitchings, senior vice president of consumer marketing at Cotton Incorporated. "In collaboration with iconic retailer, Bloomingdale's, we're making quality fabric and fashion accessible in seconds."

      Cotton Board Chairman and Louisiana cotton producer, George LaCour Jr., said "A core function of Cotton Incorporated is to create consumer demand for the cotton we grow. I am encouraged to see Cotton Incorporated leading the industry in innovating how consumers find and shop for cotton."

      Shoppers can select from more than 80 cotton pieces for both men and women, including items from contemporary brands, such as J. Brand, Adidas, Rag & Bone, Theory, Michael Kors, Burberry, Paige and more. Items are available online and at participating Bloomingdale's department stores across the country.


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Upcoming Area Field Days

      September 12 – Americot/NexGen Hockley/Cochran County Field Day, 4 p.m., meet at Len Stanley's barn. Questions: contact Mark Foster, Paxton Pugh or Gary Sanders.

September 14 – PhytoGen/Enlist Field Tour, Shallowater Community Center, 1009 Avenue H. Registration 7:30 a.m., tour begins at 8 a.m. Lunch provided at conclusion of tour. Questions: Ken Legˇ, 806-773-7310, or your local PhytoGen sales rep.

September 15 – Texas Tech Plant & Soil Science/USDA-ARS Quaker Research Farm Field Day, 200 N. Quaker Ave., Lubbock. Registration 8 a.m., Tour 9 a.m., Lunch noon, USDA-ARS tour 1:30 p.m. Questions: Reagan Anders, 806-239-5604 or

      September 20 – Perryton Field Day hosted by North Plains Groundwater Conservation District, Ochiltree County Expo, 402 Expo Drive, Perryton, 9:30 a.m. More information available at

      September 21 – Americot/NexGen Field Day, 10 a.m., AgriSearch Farm near Edmonson (Hale County). Questions: contact Gary Sanders or Jerry Montgomery.

      September 21 – Eco-Drip Field Day, 4 p.m., located at GPS Coordinates 33.6223, -101.9728. Questions or to RSVP: 806-757-2120.

September 23 – Deltapine Seminole Showcase Event, 11 a.m., Nichols Farm, 6 miles southwest of Seminole on FM 181. Questions: Eric Best, 806-790-4646.

      September 26 – Deltapine Field Day, 11 a.m., Robbie Harkey Farm, Interstate 27 Exit 43, Hale Center. More information: Alyssa Spruill, (806) 500-5003.

      September 26 – Americot/NexGen Lubbock/Lynn County Field Day, time TBA, Matt Caswell Farm. Questions: contact Cody Reep, Dale Schaffner or Hayden Alexander.

      September 28 – Bayer CropScience West Texas Field Day, Lubbock Cotton Breeding and Trait Development Station, 1405 East Loop 289 (E. Loop 289 and 16th). Registration begins at 9 a.m. Questions: contact your local Bayer CropScience sales representative.

      October 3 – Swisher County Cotton Tour, 9 a.m., Kress. Questions: John Villalba, Swisher County CEA-Ag/NR, (806) 995-3721.

      If you have a field day to add to this list, please email or call (806) 792-4904.


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West Texas Agricultural Chemicals Institute

Annual Conference Set for September 13

      The West Texas Agricultural Chemicals Institute will host their annual conference on Wednesday, Sept. 13, at the Bayer Museum of Agriculture, located at 1121 Canyon Lake Drive in Lubbock.

      This year represents the 65th meeting of WTACI, an unincorporated organization of dealers, industry representatives, agricultural producers, scientists, educators, and agribusiness members who support education and research programs promoting safe and effective use of agricultural chemicals and protection and preservation of the area's natural resources.

      Topics to be discussed at the conference include an update on the 2017 growing season, pesticide application and laws and regulations, crop rotation and nutrient management strategies, weed resistance and insect resistance management, the "Flag the Technology" program, plant diseases and nematodes, and much more. A detailed list of presentations and speakers soon will be available at

      Seven CEUs for both the Texas Department of Agriculture (TDA) and the Certified Crop Adviser (CCA) programs will be available. NMDA CEUs also are expected to be available.

      On-site registration will begin at 7 a.m. the day of the conference and will cost $95 for attendees. Lunch will be provided as part of the registration fee.

      Opportunities also exist to contribute to the WTACI Scholarship Fund, which has provided more than $60,000 in scholarships to students majoring in agricultural fields at many Texas universities.

      Contact Shawn Wade at (806) 792-4904 or for questions about the program and CEU's. If you have trouble or questions regarding registration contact David Pointer, 806-746-4021 or


Tickets Still Available for Celebrate Cotton

Game on September 16

Friday, September 8, 2017                            By Mary Jane Buerkle

Those in the cotton industry who want to see the Texas Tech Red Raiders take on Arizona State in the Celebrate Cotton game on Saturday, September 16, at Jones AT&T Stadium in Lubbock have a special promotional code to purchase tickets to that game.

Be sure you have your game tickets by visiting and entering COTTON17, or calling the Texas Tech Ticket Office at (806) 742-TECH (8324) and asking for the Cotton Game special pricing.

Individual tickets start at just $35 each with the promo code, and the game time is at 7 p.m. Season tickets also are still available for purchase.

PCG has proudly partnered with Texas Tech Athletics to establish this fun event that puts the High Plains cotton industry on a national stage. Cotton will be everywhere before and throughout the game, from displays around the stadium to promotion, special graphics and fun cotton facts during the game.

Special gameday T-shirts, sponsored by PCG and Scarborough Specialties, will be distributed (first-come, first-serve!) and cotton bales will line each entrance to the stadium, each with signage talking about what the cotton in that bale can make or how it impacts our economy. Farmers Cooperative Compress assists with providing the bales.

      Gameday partners include Ag Texas Farm Credit Services; BASF; Bayer CropScience; Cavender's; City Bank; Crop Production Services; Deltapine; Netafim; NexGen; Hurst Farm Supply; Wylie Implement and Sprayers; Scarborough Specialties; and PCG.

A complete list of Celebrate Cotton gameday partners and additional events during Cotton Game week is available at If you have an event to add to Cotton Game week, or for more information on any of these events, please call PCG at (806) 792-4904 or email