I didn’t know that beer and wine tastings could teach me anything about geography. Apparently, though, they can.
The nation’s largest geography education conference starts in Oklahoma City tomorrow. But don’t think that means nothing more than the arrival of 700 people who could pull a Ken Jennings in the geography category on ‘Jeopardy!’
Twenty-four lucky participants will go out to Bricktown on Thursday night for a “blind” tasting of four microbrewery drinks. They’ll learn “how to critically evaluate a malt beverage” and learn about the geography of brewing in America. Another group will discover how soils, hydrology and climate affect crops of grapes and wine production – during a tasting at the Canadian River Winery and Vineyard.
Also during the National Council for Geographic Education conference, geography teachers will learn things like how to integrate global positioning systems into their lessons, how Asian governments are preparing for future disasters and how climate change is portrayed in American films – “reel science.”
Students – many on Fall Break right now – also will take part. Among the opportunities for youngsters, Washita County 4-H members will host a poster session, and a hands-on workshop is designed for elementary and middle school students to create travel brochures.
Geography is not just about memorizing maps. There’s culture, climate, cartography and more. And it’s all in Oklahoma this weekend.
Wendy K. Kleinman
QUIZ YOURSELF – Can you answer these geography-related questions about Oklahoma?
1. What is the highest point in Oklahoma and where is it located?
2. Forests cover what percent of Oklahoma?
3. In land area, Oklahoma City is how big compared to other U.S. cities?
4. Oklahoma is one of only two states whose capital city includes the state name. What’s the other?
5. Oklahoma has more man-made what than any other state?
6. What does Oklahoma have more miles of than any other state?
7. Oklahoma’s Cimarron County is bordered by more states than any other U.S. county. Can you name them?
8. Oklahoma is home to the highest what in the world?
9. Only one river in Oklahoma flows north. What river is it?
10. The state’s name comes from two Choctaw words meaning what?
1. Black Mesa in the Panhandle (4,973 feet).
2. 24 percent.
3. It’s the third-largest city in the U.S. (608 square miles) – before Jacksonville, Fla. (759 square miles) and Anchorage, Alaska (1,698 square miles).
4. Indianapolis, Indiana.
5. Lakes, with more than 1 million surface acres of water.
6. Original Route 66.
7. Oklahoma, Texas, New Mexico, Colorado and Kansas.
8. The highest hill, Mount Cavanal, at 1,999 feet.
9. The Poteau River.
10. “Red People.”