It's not every day that a "city kid" can see an organic farm in action, but that is one of the many learning experiences available to visitors at the Horizon Organic Dairy, Farm and Education Center. The Center had its grand opening on Saturday, Oct. 14, 2000, after a yearlong period of construction and restoration. The Horizon Organic Dairy, Farm and Education Center is the most extensive organic learning facility in the United States. It is located near Annapolis at the site of the historic U.S. Naval Academy Dairy.

"We are so enthusiastic about this project," says Horizon Organic (Nasdaq: HCOW) co-founder Paul Repetto. "This is a marvelous place to teach children and families about organic farming, about how milk gets from the cow to the grocery store, and the interaction between agriculture and the environment."

The 875-acre farm features interactive exhibits, cow milking demonstrations, product tasting and an opportunity for visitors to meet the animals. The Center will also host ongoing events, entertainment and seminars. Located within the fragile Chesapeake Bay watershed, the Center is an ideal environment to educate children about the effects agriculture can have on the environment. Tens of thousands of local schoolchildren and their teachers will tour the facility in its first year.

According to Jan Stanton, Education Center manager, "The goal of the facility is to create an experience that educates children and adults, and is a lot of fun at the same time." Kids can try their hand at crop rotation, choose which bugs are good or bad for the farm, even crawl through a "worm tunnel" and experience a day in the life of a healthy, happy cow. "Visitors will explore the natural balance achieved by raising plants and animals without synthetic fertilizers, pesticides or antibiotics," Stanton says.

Exhibits at the Center address local environmental issues, such as the impact of farming in the Chesapeake Bay watershed. The Center also includes an area for children to meet its animals. In keeping with tradition, the Navy mascot, Bill the Goat, will be housed at the Center. In addition, visitors will be able to see several show-quality cattle being raised on the farm by the local 4-H club. The facility's original buildings, including a historic firehouse, have been restored to preserve the history of the dairy.

Under Horizon Organic's management, all 875 acres at the Center have begun the transition to organic. It will take three years under organic practices before the land is eligible for organic certification.

The experience of the Center is carried into the Marketplace, where a wide variety of healthy living and environmentally friendly products are offered. The Marketplace stocks goods varying from organic clothing to children's toys, Horizon Organic dairy and juice products, and more. Consumers can soon buy online at Horizon Organic's Web site, www.horizonorganic.com. The online store should be open by mid-November.

Horizon Organic offers a full line of certified organic milk and other organic dairy, egg and juice products. Raised under humane conditions, the Happy Cows at Horizon Organic are never treated with antibiotics or growth hormones and are fed only 100 percent certified organic hay and grain. Horizon Organic helps support more than 200,000 acres of organic farmland on 600 family farms through its ingredient and supply purchases. In providing the choice of wholesome organic products, Horizon Organic continues its commitment to sustainable agricultural practices and safe land use. For more information about Horizon Organic Dairy, Farm and Education Center visit www.horizonorganicfarm.com.