Welcome to Polk County
Polk County partners with Extension to deliver practical education and research you can use at home, at work and in your community.
4-H Youth Development is a hands-on learning program for Minnesota youth. We offer online, small group and independent learning experiences for youth of all ages. In 4-H, youth choose the topic they find interesting and caring adults support their learning and leadership. From agronomy to space exploration and creative arts to outdoor adventures, 4-H has just the right learning experience for young people.
There are many ways to participate in 4-H!
For more information contact:
Katie Becker, Extension educator, 4-H Youth Development
Municipal Building, PO Box 69
McIntosh, MN 56556
Find the latest on Extension agricultural research and news you can use on your farm from local experts.
Statewide news and blogs
- Agricultural Business Management News - Business and financial resources for farmers.
- Beef News - Beef industry featured events, farm safety and animal health.
- Dairy News - Dairy industry featured events, farm safety and animal health.
- Fruit and Vegetable News - Local production and marketing of fruit and vegetable crops in Minnesota.
- Minnesota Crop News - Emerging issues affecting Minnesota row crops and forages.
Master Gardener volunteers educate the public about horticulture using current research-based resources. This educational effort is designed to enhance quality of life and promote good stewardship of the environment.
Master Gardener volunteers complete many hours of volunteer work each year, providing a valuable in-kind contribution to Minnesota.
Find the latest gardening tips and news you can use in your own back yard from local experts.
- Yard and Garden News - Gardening tips and emerging issues affecting Minnesota.
- My Minnesota Woods - Find out how to take care of your trees and enjoy Minnesota's beautiful woodlands.
- Natural Resources News - From preserving our wetlands to combating invasive species, read about protecting and enjoying nature.
Health and nutrition
Extension offers a variety of educational programs about nutrition and health in Polk County. These programs are open to families and individuals of all ages who are eligible for benefits through the federal Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program, or who meet Extension’s program income guidelines.
Programs are offered in community settings such as food shelves, schools, community centers and public housing sites. The programs are free to all individuals and families who meet income guidelines, and may be offered in multiple languages, depending on the audience needs and availability of educators.
Extension's Center for Community Vitality engages Minnesotans to strengthen the social, civic, economic and technological capacity of their communities. We help create vibrant communities and enhance skills and knowledge in economics, leadership and civic engagement, and tourism.
Check our community research page for reports on county and community-focused topics relating to local economics, retaining businesses, growing retail markets, developing tourism, and more.
Local programs can be offered in collaboration with local community organizations and government agencies. Current programs include:
- Minnesota Agricultural and Rural Leadership (MARL)
- Red River Valley Emerging Leadership Program (ELP)
Contact an educator in your area for consultation, guidance and conversation about your community.
Minnesota is a great place to explore, understand and conserve the natural landscape. Extension education, volunteer and community science programs encourage people to become stewards of Minnesota’s public and private lands.
Extension's Regional Sustainable Development Partnerships (RSDP) connect Greater Minnesota communities and University of Minnesota knowledge and resources to support local sustainability projects.
Working in partnership, RSDP supports community-driven projects in four focus areas: agriculture and food systems, clean energy, natural resources, and resilient communities. Projects are supported by boards made up of local community members and University faculty and staff.
Learn more about RSDP’s recent work in your county and neighboring communities, and how to submit a project idea.
Join us at an event in your community.
Find opportunities to learn about the natural environment, how to care for your forest lands, and how you and your family can get out and explore nature around the state and in your own backyard.
Find information on community-focused news.
Find out how to take care of your trees and enjoy Minnesota's beautiful woodlands.
From preserving our wetlands to combating invasive species, read about protecting and enjoying nature.
Learn more about community-driven sustainability projects happening across Minnesota.
Polk County Extension
Extension brings Minnesotans together to build a better future through University science-based knowledge, expertise and training. Learn more about Extension by visiting our about page and by browsing this website.