Tuesday, October 28, 2014

Generations: Past, Present & Future

Kathy Lupfer-Nielsen, Family Consumer Sciences Agent


You, One World, Seven Generations and 7 Billion people is what this acronym stands for as I discovered when this peeked my curiosity on a Facebook page. I was pleased to discover, that this idea is based out of the Legacy Project. I had read about this project when researching for materials to use with my Generations Together, 5th grade class at Rock Hills. Hum? Generations working together sounds like a good idea for our counties, our country as well as our world.

If you haven’t noticed it, the entire world is aging. In a few years those over 60 will outnumber those under 15 and this will make a transformational impact on our world…the economy, caregiving, politics, the environment, social systems and you get the idea. YOU177 encourages us to dream larger about our place in the world.

Now it would probably cost a sizable amount to enroll in a Legacy Project. The closest one to us that I’ve located in is Tulsa, Oklahoma. But one can easily travel to the website, www.legacyproject.org and learn so much about this concept of dreaming larger and creating a lasting legacy.

Isn’t that what our communities are searching for? Ways to turn dreams into reality, reach out to the larger world and while we might not want all sorts of people moving into the county to bother our peace and quiet, we might need to welcome newcomers and more importantly work together to achieve some common dreams.

The seven generation idea in this project spoke to me in that don’t we farmer types want to leave the land better for the next generations. Don’t the local businesses or heath industries want to reach into the next generations? If we aren’t looking at our lives in this way, we are already behind. Because who will be here to care for the rest of us if we aren’t looking ahead.

On You Tube you can locate Susan Bosak, one of the developers of the Legacy Project, in a short video explaining their concept of developing the 7 generation world. Susan explained that seven generations will not be difficult for some of us or our children to reach as we all live longer. Consider that you are generation one, your parents two and your grandparents three, and so forth…my children are one generation behind me and my grandchildren two generations behind…it will not be uncommon for people my grandchildren’s age to know their great grandparents as the population lives longer. The whole generation idea is to connect with the time beyond ourselves.

Since I seem to be a legacy/keepsake type of person, I feel that Post Rock District residents have so many stories that needs to be collected before people are gone. Use every opportunity you have to get acquainted with the older generation, they have so much to offer.

And the younger generation needs to have some dreams. Dreams for a career opportunities in north central Kansas beyond agriculture and health care (although those are both GREAT careers) Are we working together to provide some new opportunities for them?

Legacy Project has some dream notebooks that could be utilized with our youth. The site features several large communities such as Tulsa, for legacy project ideas and we have some right here in north central Kansas, such as the Radish Patch Community Garden in Lincoln. Most of our communities could use middle income housing…what if we tried to do something that would have multigenerational opportunities. Perhaps there is a way to better connection older residents with young families so they could purchase their first home? Our nursing homes could offer day care for their young workers that could also benefit the residents…check out Showalter Villa at Hesston.

I always thought a housing development in one of our pastures would be neat, out by a pond for fishing and of course providing transportation for residents that could no longer drive. There are just so many ideas out there. Our communities have infinite possibilities if we would communicate and cooperate. Just saying.

Monday, October 27, 2014

Post Rock District Earns Outstanding Local Unit Award

By Nora Rhoades

The Post Rock Extension District has been recognized as K-State Research and Extension’s Outstanding Local Unit.

The District’s board members, office professionals, program assistants, and agents received the honor from John Floros, Dean of the College Agriculture and Director of K-State Research and Extension, at the Annual Conference Awards Luncheon on October 23, 2014.

Present to accept the award: (front l-r) Deb Beam, Su-Mi Sneath, Jenae Ryan, Aliesa Woods, Tom Porter, Daphne Manning, Sandra Wick, Abbye Hendrich, Nadine Holmes, and Marci Metz. (back l-r) Jeanne Bristol, Joyce McKinney, Nadine Sigle, Dina Heise, Julie Nichols, Kathy Lupfer Nielsen, Teresa Shipley, Glenda Rothchild, Neil Cates, and Nora Rhoades.

“This award is a testament to the commitment demonstrated by our staff and board members,” exclaimed Aliesa Woods, District Director. “We extend a special thank you to the communities in Jewell, Lincoln, Mitchell, Osborne, and Smith Counties. Without strong community partners our work to improve the lives of Kansans would not be efficient nor sustainable.”

The award is given to a local extension unit for excellence in three areas: program, personnel and budget. 2014 is the inaugural year for a series of outstanding service awards recognized at the state-level on an annual basis; the Post Rock District is the first to receive the Outstanding Local Unit Award.

The review committee looks for evidence of: active programming efforts related to the Five Grand Challenges facing Kansas citizens (water, health, global food systems, community development, and developing tomorrow’s leaders); engagement with program development committees to evaluate community strengths and areas of potential growth; sharing outcomes and impacts achieved through extension resources to community members, stakeholders and government officials; wise budget management; trained and specialized staff members; and involvement and support of volunteers.

The theme of the 2014 Annual Conference was “Honoring the Past…Forging the Future.” For 100 years, K-State Research and Extension has worked closely with land-grant universities across the nation to provide practical education you can trust – to help people, businesses, and communities solve problems, develop skills, and build a better future. The Post Rock District celebrates Extension’s past and focuses on the contemporary application of Extension’s transformational educational programming into the future.

The Post Rock District of K-State Research and Extension serves Jewell, Lincoln, Mitchell, Osborne, and Smith Counties. We can be contacted by calling our offices in Mankato 378-3174, Beloit 738-3597, Lincoln 524-4432, Osborne 346-2521, or Smith Center 282-6823. Like “Post Rock Extension” on Facebook and follow us on Twitter. Our website is www.postrock.ksu.edu.

Monday, October 20, 2014

"Seeing is believing"

Sandra L. Wick, Agriculture Agent

K-State’s Research and Extension’s mission is to provide the citizens of Kansas with technical information and education that can enhance the economic viability and quality of life in our communities. One good way to do this is through well-planned and carefully-conducted demonstrations or “on-farm research” that serves as one of the most effective Extension education tools ever developed. Although complete demonstrations require considerable time and effort, the payback comes when producers readily adapt practices they perceive to be appropriate under local conditions. This is known as “seeing is believing.” Clients who observe demonstrations of the latest techniques or practices and then apply them to their own particular situations are our present and future Extension leaders. Demonstrations should illustrate the application of appropriate technology, that is, technology that fits the local set of conditions. When this occurs, the maximum learning will result from the resources invested.

The need for demonstrations was first recognized over a century ago by Seaman A. Knapp, an Extension pioneer. Knapp’s theory was that farmers would not change their methods as a result of observing farms operated at public expense, but that demonstrations conducted by farmers themselves on their own farms under ordinary farm conditions were the answer. In Knapp’s words, “What a man hears, he may doubt; what he sees, he may also doubt; but what he does, he cannot doubt.” In 1903, Knapp proved his point through now famous demonstrations or on-farm research. The demonstration included a small farm in Texas that planted half in corn and half in cotton. The purpose was to illustrate the effects of using different seed varieties, fertilizers, methods of planting, and cultivation. The farmer made $700 more than might have been expected and the demonstration was a success. Then the opportunity came to use demonstrations on a broad scale in the weevil-infested areas of Texas and two adjoining states. Knapp demonstrated improved cotton growing methods. With a $40,000 budget, he directed more than 20 federal agents who worked with some 7,000 farmers to establish demonstration plots. This marked the beginning of demonstrations in the Cooperative Extension Service.

Post Rock Extension District is very fortunate to have many producers who are willing to put in the extra time and effort for on-farm research or demonstration test plots. For this fall we are fortunate to have 4 wheat demonstration plots in four counties. Thanks to Calvin and Josh Bohnert, Rodney Doane, Marty Fletchall and Ernie Schlatter as cooperators of the “on-farm wheat research for K-State Research and Extension and for the Post Rock District! Three of the wheat plots (Jewell, Osborne and Smith) include 21 varieties, 2 blends and population studies. The fourth plot (Mitchell) is a KSU replicated plot that is designed and planted by the KSU NC Experiment Field staff.

“Knowledge for Life” continues to be our goal for K-State Research and Extension, so our educational programming provides research-based information from the university to the producers of our district.


Calvin Bohnert drilling the wheat demonstration plot in Jewell County.

Thanks for all the volunteers in drilling the Osborne County wheat demonstration plot with cooperator, Rodney Doane.

Thursday, October 16, 2014

Post Rock District Participates in 4-H Service Challenge

By Aliesa Woods, 4-H Youth Development Agent

To end the National 4-H Week celebration, Post Rock District 4-H members took part in the Kansas 48 Hours of 4-H Service Challenge. A few examples of projects completed include:

The Solomon Valley Club in Gaylord gathered a trailer load of recyclable products.

Asherville Achievers 4-H Club decorated and delivered pumpkins to the Mitchell County Hospital Health Care Systems Residential Care Center.

The Sunflower 4-H Club in Osborne took an afternoon to go through the downtown district in Osborne to wash windows of all the vacant buildings in Osborne.

The Smith Center Heart of America Club went door to door to collect canned foods.

Mankato Eager Beavers decorated pumpkins and delivered them to Jewell County Long Term Care residents.

The members of the Busy Bees 4-H Club in Kensington worked together to wash windows around their community.

West Beloit 4-H Club members picked up trash in the Beloit community at the fairgrounds, ball fields, and north of the shopping center. 

The Jewell County Jr. Leaders moved 100 years of newspapers from the old library to the Historical Center for the curator.

Members of the Natoma Eager Beavers 4-H Club gave their hands to larger service to help raise funds to buy new championship and league banners for the USD 399 school gym by hosting a chili fundraiser before the football game.

Research has proven that participation in 4-H has a significant positive impact on young people. Recent findings from the Tufts University 4-H Study of Positive Youth Development indicate that, when compared to their peers, young people in 4-H are nearly four times more likely to contribute to their communities,

Kansas 4-H is a network of families that grows great kids and it's for town/city families too. For more information about how you can get involved in 4-H check out www.JoinKansas4H.org.

Tuesday, October 14, 2014

Calling all Gardeners!

Jenae Ryan, Horticulture Extension Agent

Calling all Gardeners!

Do you love gardening? Would you like an opportunity to share your knowledge and passion for growing veggies, fruits, and flowers?
The Post Rock District is now accepting applications for the Master Gardener program. The Extension Master Gardener program is an educational volunteer training program sponsored by K-State Research and Extension. Through this program, individuals are trained and certified in horticulture and related areas. These individuals, in turn, volunteer their expertise and services to help others through horticulture projects that benefit the Post Rock District communities.
            Once trained, Extension Master Gardeners provide research-based information to the public on many topics related to horticulture and gardening, including water conservation, yard waste management, regional plant adaptability, and the environment.
            Master Gardeners will work with the program coordinator, Jenae Ryan, Horticulture Extension Agent, and their local Extension staff to develop educational programs that meet the horticultural needs of the citizens of the Post Rock District.
            This year, the Master Gardener training for new applicants will be held in Hays or Salina for 8 weeks from February through March. You may choose whichever location is closest to you, but Jenae will be attending the training in Salina. Applications may be found online at the Post Rock District’s webpage under the Lawn and Garden tab:
For further questions or to pick up a paper copy of the application, contact your Local Extension Office. Applications are due back to the program coordinator by December 31, 2014.
            If you are a current Master Gardener, Jenae is in the process of gathering information and determining who is still active, or wants to become active again, in the Master Gardener program in our District. If you have already filled out and returned your information sheet, thanks! If not, please feel free to call, email, or visit Jenae and let her know that you would like to be involved in future Master Gardener activities and programs.