Master Gardener Eclipses Six Decades w/Penn State Extension

Marilyn Race (above, center) has participated with her fellow Master Gardeners many times at Susquehanna County Ag Day.

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Susquehanna County Master Gardener Marilyn Race has a long rich history with Penn State Extension. Marilyn has been a Penn State Extension Master Gardener since 2003. She began her involvement/volunteering with Penn State Extension in the early 1950s by having children in the 4-H program and then becoming a decades long 4-H leader in Bits and Bosals, Hooves in Clover and Blue Ribbon Driven horse clubs throughout the years. Her children, grandchildren and even a great grandchild have been involved in the 4-H program.

Marilyn said she got involved in the Master Gardener program because she loves gardening and is always interested in learning more. One of her first projects with the group was teaching worm composting.

Marilyn’s first love with the Master Gardener program is working with the kids in the Junior Master Gardener program. She has mentored generations of youth through her career as a 4-H leader and teaching children comes naturally to Marilyn. “I love their enthusiasm and they help me keep going!” she said. “They grasp everything so quickly and it amazes me how much they want to learn!” she adds.

Another favorite part of the Master Gardner program that Marilyn enjoys is working with the area Senior Centers to offer hands on programs for the county’s residents. She has been part of this endeavor for over 10 years and is looking forward to continuing with the programming.

Marilyn is the Master Gardener program’s registration gal! You can see Marilyn at several programs manning the registration table and keeping everything running smoothly. Susquehanna County Ag Day at Elk Lake School is one of Marilyn’s mainstays. She is always on hand to lend support and offer a helping hand.

Marilyn and her husband Walter (also a lifelong Penn State Extension volunteer) moved to Meshoppen in 1952 and raised a few generations of family there. At their farm, Marilyn has a vegetable garden for fresh produce and various perennial flower beds. She also raises meat goats and has a horse. “In past years, we showed our horses on the Palomino circuit and also showed them at the World Show in Tulsa, Oklahoma three times.” she said.

I really enjoy the people, the gatherings and the learning part of the Master Gardener program.” Marilyn said.

The Penn State Extension Master Gardener program in Susquehanna County wishes to thank Marilyn for all her hard work and consistency and looks forward to many more years with her in the program.

For more information on the Penn State Master Gardener program call Penn State Extension Office at 570-666-9003 or email:

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