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Saturday, May 18, 2024

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Rutgers Cooperative Extension of CMCo Resumes In-person, Virtual Programming

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By Press Release

COURT HOUSE – With the easing of Covid restrictions by Rutgers University, the Rutgers Cooperative Extension (RCE) of Cape May County officially reopened its doors to the public June 7. 

Gary Pavlis, acting department head, RCE of Cape May County, stated, “We are happy that things are getting back to normal safely, and we are, once again, able to serve residents and visitors to Cape May County in-person.”  

According to a release issued by the organization, although RCE staff returned to the office in June 2020 and continued to serve the community by appointment, email and telephone, the building remained closed to the public, along with most other county facilities.  

Pavlis added, “Although our doors weren’t physically open, we were still able to provide many virtual educational programs, as well as services, such as farmers’ certificates, soil tests, pesticide manuals, and answers to gardening questions.” 

Brian Schilling, director, Rutgers Cooperative Extension, announced the lifting of restrictions for extension offices following Gov. Phil Murphy’s executive orders that went into effect June 7. These orders removed many of the public health and safety protocols implemented to slow community transmission of Covid, most notably the rescinding of previous orders governing requirements for gathering and capacity limits, mask use and social distancing. 

Schilling’s announcement stated, “In alignment with Gov. Murphy’s determinations, Rutgers Cooperative Extension faculty, staff, and volunteer leaders now have increased flexibility to organize and host in-person extension programs, meetings and related activities.” Rutgers Cooperative Extension may develop and deliver indoor and outdoor programs with no group size limits and social distancing requirements. Although masks are not required for outdoor activities, they are still required for indoor programs and meetings. 

Cape May County 4-H is excited to offer horse and livestock clinics and shows on the 4-H fairgrounds throughout the summer.  

The Rutgers 4-H Teen Leader Naturalist Program is underway, at the Nature Center of Cape May, and runs through Aug. 20 Also, 4-H will be teaching natural science at Woodbine Elementary Summer School for six weeks in July and August, and 4-H clubs are meeting in-person.  

Family & Community Health Sciences and Agriculture and Natural Resources will continue to offer virtual Lunch and Learn programs, wellness programs and workshops during July and August. The Grandparents Raising Grandchildren Support Group will return to in-person meetings starting in August. 

Visit capemay.njaes.rutgers.edu for up-to-date information about programs and services offered by Rutgers Cooperative Extension of Cape May County, or call 609-465-5115. 

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