KJAN Ag/Outdoor

Cass County Fair Queen and King Crowned Thursday

Ag/Outdoor, News

July 23rd, 2015 by Chris Parks

The 2015 Cass County Fair got into full swing with the crowning of this years King and Queen on Thursday night in  front of the memory garden at the Cass County Community Center.  A large crowd gathered to see 9 candidates vie for Queen and 2 candidates compete for King.

(Left to right) Blake Miller,Emily McDermott, Alyssa Dean, Tyler Steele (Jim Field Photo)

(Left to right) Blake Miller,Emily McDermott, Alyssa Dean, Tyler Steele (Jim Field Photo)

4 Queen candidates were chosen from the previous judging to be interviewed in front of the crowd.  Those finalists were Haley Carlson, Alyssa Dean, Emily McDermott, and Tierney Sothman.  The two king candidates Tyler Steele and Blake Miller were also interviewed for final judging.

After final deliberations by the judges Alyssa Dean was crowned the 2015 Cass County Fair Queen and Tyler Steele was crowned King. Dean is the Daughter of Tim and Corissa Dean and is a member of the Cowpokes 4-H club and Griswold FFA.  Steele is the Son of Doug and Lynette Steele and is a member of the Grant Guys & Gals 4-H club and CAM FFA.

Also receiving awards were Emily McDermott as Princess, Tierney Sothman as Ms. Congeniality, and Blake Miller as Prince and Mr. Congeniality.

The remaining queen candidates were Jessica Aupperle, Katie Aupperle, Mandi Backhaus, Sydney Steffen, and Brookelyn Wahlert. Judging was done by Ronna Herzberg and Shelley Velman.

Also part of the event was the induction of Mary Ottmar into the Cass County 4-H hall of fame.  She was lured to the event under the guise of helping judge the King and Queen contest and then was surprised with the award.  Mary’s son Adam sweetened the surprise by flying in for the ceremony when she thought he was home in California.

The Cass County Fair continues through Tuesday, July 28th.  Listen for live coverage everyday on KJAN.

Day 1 of the Cass County Fair (July 23rd)

Ag/Outdoor, News

July 23rd, 2015 by Ric Hanson

While final preparations for the 2015 Cass County Fair began Wednesday, here in Atlantic, many other activities are set for today. The schedule includes: weigh-in’s for the swine and rabbit check-in this morning; 4-H static exhibit judging and the Clover Kids showcase, will also take place this morning, along with the Meat Goat weigh-in and Dairy check-in. A Food Sale will get underway at 10-a.m. as well, at the Community Center next to the Fairgrounds.

The Food Stand is open from 6:30-a.m. until 10-p.m. each day of the Fair. Specials this Noon at the Food Stand include Hamburgers, Hot Dogs, Pulled Pork and Ham sandwiches. Hot beef is sold nightly at the Food Stand beginning at 5-p.m., with Hot Pork sold only after 5-p.m. on Friday and Saturday.

This evening, the horse, poultry and sheep weigh-in’s will take place. The big event kicking-off the Fair, is the King and Queen Contest at 7:30-p.m., followed by Senior Recognition, at 8-p.m.  The nine Queen candidates include:

Jessica Aupperle-Wiota CAM FFA, Grant Guys & Gals; Sydney Steffen-Griswold Griswold FFA, Griswold Clubsters; Tierney Sothman – Cumberland CAM FFA, Union Leaders; Emily McDermott-Atlantic Atlantic FFA, Pymosa; Brooklyn Wahlert -Anita CAM FFA, Grant Guys & Gals; Mandi Backhaus-Griswold Griswold FFA, Griswold Clubsters; Alyssa Dean-Griswold Griswold FFA, Cass County Cowpokes; Haley Carlson-Atlantic Atlantic FFA, Pymosa; Katie Aupperle -Wiota CAM FFA, Benton Franklin

Your two King candidates this year are: Tyler Steele-Anita CAM FFA, Grant Guys & Gals; & Blake Miller-Atlantic CAM FFA, Grant Guys & Gals.

The Cass County Fair runs through July 28th, with no parking or admission fees. Check out the daily schedule and get more information about the Fair at http://www.extension.iastate.edu/cass And, follow the fair on Facebook at www.facebook.com/theCassCountyFair. Listen for our live broadcasts every day of the fair beginning on Friday, from 1-until 7-pm, here on KJAN.

Cass County Extension Report 07-22-2015

Ag/Outdoor, Podcasts

July 22nd, 2015 by Chris Parks

w/ Kate Olson


Tree Management Grant Available to Iowa Communities

Ag/Outdoor, News

July 22nd, 2015 by Ric Hanson

Iowa communities with a population of 5,000 or more, have the opportunity to learn more about tree care, identification and inventory through a grant from the Iowa Department of Natural Resources. The two-year grant program currently provides training and assistance to Atlantic, Fairfield, Grinnell, Marion, Marshalltown, Mason City, Muscatine, Oskaloosa and Pleasant Hill, and is now accepting applications for 10 additional communities in 2016.

Grant communities receive intensive training by a team from the DNR and members of the Iowa Arborists Association. Training covers tree identification, health, inventory, planting, corrective pruning and maintenance, benefits of urban trees, ordinances and community outreach.

Through the cooperative effort between the Iowa DNR and the U.S. Forest Service, each selected community will have a complete street tree inventory, canopy cover analysis, and an urban tree management plan with goals and methods to increase its tree canopy.

Grant applications and instructions are available online at http://www.iowadnr.gov/Environment/Forestry/UrbanForestry.aspx. The deadline to apply is September 1st.

Landscaping Duties Taken On By Unique Visitors At Prairie Rose State Park

Ag/Outdoor, News

July 22nd, 2015 by Ric Hanson

Prairie Rose State Park, near Harlan, is welcoming some special visitors this week, and they are taking some of the parks’ land management issues into their own… mouths. This week, about 20 goats will arrive to chow down on non-native honeysuckle and other nuisance vegetation threatening to crowd-out native plants in the park’s woodlands. Park manager Michelle Reinig took the innovative step of hiring goats because “it just made so much sense.”

Reinig says “Our resource is looking rather ‘sick,’ being overtaken by the woodland fugitive honeysuckle not to mention a few other invasives. The goats will help us get a handle on this overwhelming problem while loving the work that they do. This is a more ‘green’ approach than other methods of invasive control, and we like the idea of conservation and agricultural working together.”

Goats On The Go, a targeted grazing company based in Ames, will provide the herd that will call Prairie Rose home for about 10 weeks. Aaron Steele, co-owner of the company, says goats “Like to eat weeds and brush more than grass, and many of our biggest nuisance plants are at the top of the goats’ (dining) list.”

Goats can be put to work controlling noxious honeysuckle, poison ivy, buckthorn and multiflora rose without the use of chemical herbicides or gas-powered machinery. They also happily work in areas that would be uncomfortable and even dangerous for human workers – like steep slopes and dense woods.

The DNR has successfully used goats in land management projects in other parts of the state, most notably on the steep slopes in northeast Iowa.

First Iowa farms hit by bird flu nearing restocking time

Ag/Outdoor, News

July 21st, 2015 by Ric Hanson

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — One of the first Iowa turkey farms to get bird flu is getting nearing the time at which birds can be restocked but most of the 77 farms affected are still weeks away from introduction of new flocks. Iowa Department of Agriculture officials said Tuesday all farms have been cleared of dead chickens and turkeys but disposal of manure, compost and other waste continued at 18 farms.

All birds that died or were euthanized have been incinerated, buried or taken to landfills. Iowa lost 34 million chickens and turkeys in the bird flu outbreak that began in mid-April. The last reported case was June 16. One turkey farm in Calhoun County will finish a required 21-day fallow period this week and if tests remain negative may begin restocking.

MO. man found guilty of numerous hunting violations in Taylor County

Ag/Outdoor, News

July 21st, 2015 by Ric Hanson

Officials with the Iowa Dept. of Natural Resources say a Missouri man was found guilty by a jury of illegal deer hunting in southwest Iowa’s Taylor County. 61-year old Michael K. Kahnert, of Branson West, Mo., was found guilty of six counts of fraudulently obtaining resident hunting, deer and turkey licenses, three counts of not having valid non-resident hunting and deer licenses, one count of taking/hunting deer out of season, one count of illegal taking of an antlered whitetail deer, and two counts of illegal taking of antlerless whitetail deer.

He was sentenced on June 18th. Kahnert was ordered to forfeit the antlers and pay more than $11,400 in fines, court costs and liquidated damages. Kahnert has been suspended from hunting or obtaining any licenses for three years.

The state of Iowa is a member of the Wildlife Violator Compact, which is an agreement between participating states that prohibits a person whose hunting or fishing privileges are suspended in one state from participating in those activities in another state, including Missouri.

Conservation Officer Andrea Bevington has been actively investigating residency fraud cases like this since 2009. Unfortunately, this type of case is not unique in her territory. Bevington said “Iowa is known for trophy whitetail deer attracting people from across the United States and other countries. Unfortunately, these trophies sometimes draw individuals who fraudulently obtain resident licenses and rob the opportunity for a deer of a lifetime from a lawful hunter.”

Residency laws were changed in 2009 to identify a growing problem in Iowa of non-residents falsifying records to illegally obtain resident licenses.

Grand Opening held for Atlantic Activities area at Sunnyside Park

Ag/Outdoor, News

July 21st, 2015 by Ric Hanson

A ribbon cutting ceremony was held today (Tuesday) at Sunnyside Park in Atlantic, for a new, activities area.

Atlantic Ambassadors and others at the Sunnyside Park Activities Area ribbon cutting. (Ric Hanson/photo)

Atlantic Ambassadors and others at the Sunnyside Park Activities Area ribbon cutting. (Ric Hanson/photo)

The site, located just south of the Parks and Rec Building off Sunnyside lane, features a recently installed horseshoe pit area, along with green space for several activities, including Bocceball, which Parks and Rec Director Roger Herring said is a “Great, fun game.” He said it’s also one of the fastest 55 and older resort-type games, that’s found at many retirement communities in the southern tier of states.

There’s also a badminton court, Croquet and other activities. There are also benches and tables available for people who want to play checkers or other board games. The equipment is available free of charge, but you should call ahead to make sure it’s available on the day or days you intend to use them.

Parks and Rec Director Roger Herring thanked the Dean Orstad Family and the Trevor Frederickson Foundation for their contribution to and support of the activities area, through the installation of the horseshoe pit area. That section of the activities area has four, regulation-size horseshoe pits.

Roger Herring talks about Dean Orstad with his extended family members looking on.

Roger Herring talks about Dean Orstad with his extended family members looking on.

Plaques recognizing Dean Orstad will be mounted in the horseshoe pit area recognizing his contribution and enthusiasm for outdoor activities at Sunnyside Park. The final site plans for the activities area was approved by the Parks and Rec Board in the early Spring of 2014. Roger Herring said he would love to drive by and see Senior Citizens using the Activities area of park a couple of days a week at least, and people of all ages using it in for family get togethers.

Prior to dedicating that area of the park, Herring and Assistant Parks Director Seth Staashelm gathered with Atlantic Area Chamber of Commerce Ambassadors at the new Camblin Shelter at Sunnyside Park, to talk about the latest park improvements.

Business group hopes to broker water agreement

Ag/Outdoor, News

July 21st, 2015 by Ric Hanson

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) – A Des Moines business group says it wants to find a solution to a water quality dispute that has prompted the city’s water utility to sue three counties. Des Moines Water Works claims that drainage districts in those counties act as conduits in moving nitrates from farm fields into a river, which serves as one of two sources of drinking water for city residents.

As a result, the utility says it spent hundreds of thousands of dollars to reduce nitrates to levels the federal government deems safe. The lawsuit is set to go before a federal judge next summer. The Des Moines Register reports that the Greater Des Moines Partnership wants to bring together business, farming, water, environmental and legislative leaders to find long-term solutions to Iowa’s water-quality issues.

Register for Preserve the Taste of Summer Lessons and Workshops

Ag/Outdoor, News

July 21st, 2015 by Ric Hanson

Iowans can learn how to “Preserve the Taste of Summer” during online lessons and hands-on workshops from Iowa State University Extension and Outreach. The online lessons already are available and workshops are planned for July and August, 2015, including a jam and jelly workshop August 8th from 9 am to 12 noon, at the Cass County Fairgrounds.ISU Extension

Preserve the Taste of Summer is a comprehensive food preservation education program including online lessons, hands-one workshops and printable resources and recipes. The two-part educational series includes online classwork, covering topics such as food safety, canning basics, canning acid foods, pressure canning low-acid foods, preparation and canning of pickled and fermented foods, making and preserving fruit spreads, freezing foods, storage of frozen and refrigerated foods, and drying foods. The lessons can also be taken in a group session at the Extension Office by prior arrangement.

Once the “classroom” sessions are completed, participants can choose from four different hands-on workshops, each lasting approximately three hours, where they will practice specific preservation skills in a kitchen and take home a freshly preserved product. The four workshop choices include Hot water bath canning (salsa making) and freezing, Jams and dehydrating, Pickle making and Pressure canning.

The home food preserver registration fee is $35 and covers all eight online lessons and one hands-on workshop. The professional level of “Preserve the Taste of Summer” qualifies as continuing education for Iowa teachers and registered dietitians. The registration fee is $100 and covers all eight online lessons and two hands-on workshops.

Cass County Extension will be hosting a Jams and Dehydrating workshop in the Cass County Fair Foodstand on Saturday, August 8th from 9 AM to Noon. Other upcoming classes include a July 30yh Pressure Canning workshop in Adair County, an August 13 Pickling workshop in Carson, and an August 20th Salsa workshop in Adair County. All of these workshops require completion of relevant classroom sessions prior to attending the workshop.

For more information on cost and getting enrolled in the classes, visit the Preserve the Taste of Summer website at www.extension.iastate.edu/humansciences/preserve-taste-summer. You can also call the Cass County Extension Office at 712-243-1132 to learn more about the program, to inquire about the Group Viewing option for the classwork, or to pick up food preservation publications.

Food Preservation publications, covering 8 different types of home food preservation, with detailed recipes, can also be downloaded at no cost from the ISU Extension Online Store (https://store.extension.iastate.edu/).