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Community News Archives for 2021-09

Upcoming changes to SNAP for October

The Indiana Family and Social Services Administration has announced two upcoming changes the U.S. Food and Nutrition Services Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program. Together these changes may impact the benefits received by Hoosier SNAP participants.

 

  • On Sept. 30, 2021, the 15% increase in SNAP benefits provided as part of the American Rescue Plan Act of 2021 will end.
  • Starting in October 2021, benefits will increase due to the recent re-evaluation of the Thrifty Food Plan.

The result of these two updates occurring at the same time is that in October most SNAP participants will see a slight increase to their monthly benefit.

 

SNAP households may have heard that because of the updated Thrifty Food Plan their benefits are increasing. However, they may not understand that this increase is to the pre-pandemic benefit amounts—before the 15% increase. As a result, some participants may be expecting their benefits to increase substantially over their current level.

 

With these changes happening around the same time, SNAP participants, stakeholders, and others may become confused. Here is a Q and A from FNS that could help.

Fall Time Fruits

There are many things that make fall time in Indiana great. One of those things is the drastic change in leaf color that can be seen while driving down the road. Another is the sweet, homemade goodies that can be made from fall time fruits.

The first fall time fruit that individuals often think about is apples. There are over 7,500 known varieties of apples in the world with over 2,500 varieties grown in the United States.  Most scientists think that apples originate from somewhere in Central Asia, in a mountain range called Dzungarian Alps. Apples came to North America in 1625. Today, we are lucky to several different apple varieties grown within the state of Indiana.

One of the most popular apple varieties is Red Delicious. This is a striped to solid red apple with a rich, sweet taste. It was discovered in Iowa. If you would rather enjoy a green apple, then you might consider a Crispin. Crispin apples have a nice green skin color and are known for their great crunch. In terms of a yellow apple, you might consider a Ginger Gold.  This variety was discovered in Virginia. It is similar to the Golden Delicious in appearance and taste, but becomes ready to harvest about 6 weeks earlier.  

Just like apples, there is another fall time fruit ready that individuals are currently harvesting in Putnam County. That fruit is the pawpaw. Pawpaw trees are native to the Midwest and the fruit is sometimes referred to as the Indiana banana. They have attractive foliage. Flowers develop in early spring before leaves develop. They resemble raw flesh, attracting carrion flies and beetles, which act as their pollinators.

Pawpaw trees fruit in late August to early October. Fruit size can vary by variety and pollination success. They can be the size of a golf ball or as large as a baking potato. Some people may be allergic to them. Pawpaw seeds are large and should not be consumed. Pawpaw seeds contain an emetic, which causes vomiting. Fruit should not be eaten unless it is fully ripe. If you want to know more about pawpaws, consider watching the videos on pawpaw growth and cooking with pawpaws found on the Purdue Extension-Putnam County Facebook page (posted in September).

In the coming weeks, there is another fall time fruit that will be ripe and ready for harvest.  That fruit is the persimmon. Persimmons are native to the southeastern United States. They grow wild over much of southern Indiana. Often, you will find the native variety growing in abandoned fields and fence rows. The overall shape of a native persimmon tree is pleasing to the eye.

The most beneficial part of a native persimmon tree is the fruit that it produces. The fruit of the native persimmon is oval and has tiny leaves called calyx that surround the location where it attaches to the tree. The calyx is considered to be decorative. Once the fruit is ripe, it will become orange in color and be about 1/2 inch in diameter. If you eat the fruit before it is ripe, it will make you pucker your mouth. Once it is ripe, it will be a sweet, mellow taste. Be on the lookout for videos about growing persimmons and using persimmons on the Purdue Extension-Putnam County Facebook page (anticipated posting in late October/early November).

Visit our homepage at www.extension.purdue.edu/putnam or you can contact the local Purdue Extension Office by calling 765.653.8411 for more information regarding this week’s column topic or to RSVP for upcoming events. It is always best to call first to assure items are ready when you arrive and to RSVP for programs. While many publications are free, some do have a fee. Purdue University is an equal access/equal opportunity institution. All times listed are Eastern Time.

Upcoming Events:

September 28 – Fall Walking Group, 9am, Big Walnut Sports Park, register at
                765-301-7641

October 5, 12, 19, 26 – Fall Walking Group, 9am, Big Walnut Sports Park, register at
                           765-301-7641

October 19 – Medicare & Diabetes, Fairgrounds, 2 pm, register at 765-653-8411

October 19 – Pork: The No Hogwash Protein webinar, 12 pm register at
                      https://tinyurl.com/WIAWebinars21

October 27, November 3, 10, 17 – Grass to Garden Program, virtual, 6 – 9 pm, $50,
                                                        register at 765-653-8411


Indiana farm fatality summary stresses importance of farm safety

Purdue University’s Agricultural Safety and Health Program released the annual Indiana Farm Fatality Summary with Historical Overview, coinciding with National Farm Safety and Health Week.

 

The annual observance has been the third week of September since 1944. The program reported 25 work-related on-farm deaths in the state of Indiana in 2020, including one grain entrapment, nine involving tractors and four involving off-road or utility terrain vehicles.

 

Farm fatalities for the past 50 years continue to trend lower, likely reflecting safer machinery and work practices while also corresponding with a decline in the number of farmers. Despite this encouraging trend, report members urge agriculture workers to remain diligent and follow safety procedures. No Indiana agency documents farm-related nonfatal injuries, but prior research has indicated that approximately one in nine Indiana farms has a farm-work-related injury incident that requires medical attention each year.

 

Documented incidents involving those age 60 or older account for nearly half of all cases in the past five years, including over half of the victims in 2020.

 

“Historically, farmers over the age of 60, including many who work only part time, have accounted for a disproportionate number of farm-related injuries. Recent spikes in frequencies of fatalities over the past 10 years makes this population of older farmers a special concern,” the report states.

 

Bill Field, Purdue agriculture and biological engineering professor and Extension safety specialist, has summarized over 1,100 farm fatalities during his career.

 

“This annual summary is a somber reminder that our food can come at a cost of lives, health and well-being for farm families,” Field said.

 

As Hoosier farmers begin to harvest, program members remind farmers to keep safety a top priority. Agriculture safety guides, disaster preparedness resources and the Indiana Farm Fatality Summary can be found online.

COVID testing and vaccine at Cloverdale INDOT site

The Indiana Department of Health will have a mobile COVID-19 vaccine unit at the INDOT Cloverdale Subdistrict office, Tuesday, September 21 from 7 am -1 pm and Wednesday, September 22 from 1 - 5 pm.

 

They will be administering shots and will provide COVID testing if someone wants tested.

 

The office is located 10 High St., Cloverdale.


National 4-H Week and Paper Clover Campaign

For the 78th consecutive year, millions of youth, parents, volunteers and alumni across the country will celebrate National 4-H Week from October 3-9. This year's theme, Find Your Spark, is a campaign that will give kids more opportunities to discover career paths and empower youth with the skills they need to succeed in life and career.

4-H was founded on the belief that when kids are empowered to pursue their passions and chart their own course, their unique skills grow and take shape, helping them to become true leaders in their lives, careers and communities. As an early kickoff to National 4-H Week, the local program plans to have a presence at the First Friday event on October 1 on the courthouse square. Come out and see us!

Once again, the 4-H enrollment window for all of Indiana’s grade 3-12 youth will occur between October 1 and January 15 to assure the availability of all project activities. One may enroll by going to in.4honline.com and additional information will be posted during the month on the local Purdue Extension Putnam County website. Specific exhibit details will be provided by January. Additionally, Extension staff will be conducting school visits to all third-grade classrooms throughout the county in October and November.

Also, in conjunction with National 4-H Week, like all Tractor Supply Stores (TSC), locally the TSC store will host the Fall Paper Clover event in the store and online during October 6th through October 17th! The Putnam 4-H program thanks the local store management for this ongoing promotion and the funds that support local 4-H youth! Customers for $1 may purchase a paper clover and place names, etc. on the clover to be posted in the store. As a reminder, 90% of the funds raised are returned to the local 4-H program to support youth/teen participation in leadership or camping opportunities. These include Teens as Teacher training, 4-H Camp, 4-H Roundup, 4-H Academy and other statewide 4-H activities and can include transportation expenses.

Visit our homepage at www.extension.purdue.edu/putnam or you can contact the local office by calling 765.653.8411 for more information regarding this week’s column topic or to RSVP for upcoming events. Office hours are Monday thru Friday from 8:00am-12:00pm and 1:00pm-4:00pm. Evening and lunch appointments are available, upon request. It is always best to call first to assure items are ready when you arrive and to RSVP for programs. While many publications are free, some do have a fee. All times listed are Eastern Time. Purdue University is an equal access/equal opportunity/affirmative action institution.

Upcoming events

September 21, 28 – Fall Walking Group, 9am, Big Walnut Sports Park, register at
                                765-301-7641

September 22 – Recognizing Hazards Around the Farm webinar, 12 pm register at
                           https://tinyurl.com/WIAWebinars21

September 27 – ServSafe 1-Day Class and Online Exam, 9am-4pm, Fairgrounds, register
                at https://purdue.edu/servsafe/workshops

October 5, 12, 19, 26 – Fall Walking Group, 9am, Big Walnut Sports Park, register at
                           765-301-7641

October 11 – Extension Office Closed for Columbus Day county holiday

October 19 – Medicare & Diabetes, Fairgrounds, 2 pm, register at 765-653-8411

October 19 – Pork: The No Hogwash Protein webinar, 12 pm register at
                      https://tinyurl.com/WIAWebinars21

Putt Putnam joining October First Friday

No one needs a reason to attend the Greencastle First Friday events, there is always something fun to do. However, if you feel you need an excuse to attend the final First Friday of year, then the October 1, 2021 First Friday may hold the key…or rather, the putter.

 

Castlemakers is once again joining Main Street Greencastle for First Friday with their fifth annual Putt Putnam County event. What started in 2016 as a youth competition, held at the Putnam County Public Library, has now become a community event for all ages. Friends and organizations team up and work together to build a mini-golf hole, then bring it to Franklin Street for First Friday. Between 6:00 PM and 8:00 PM, First Friday attendees can play mini-golf on the community created holes.

 

If you are interested in bringing a mini-golf hole to the event, you must contact Castlemakers by September 28. You can find the guidelines for creating your hole here.


Operation Roundup benefits Putnam County

Putnam County Giving Tree received a grant from the REMC Multi Community Trust. This grant of $6,000 is to help with providing Putnam County families with Christmas gifts for their children.

 

Parke County REMC participates in a national program known as Operation Roundup.  Customers of REMC are able to choose to round their bill up to the nearest dollar amount, the extra change being deposited into the Multi-County Community Trust. More than 8,000 customers choose to participate; their average donation is $6 per year per customer.

 

The Multi-County Community Trust is only available to the organizations with the service area of Parke County REMC, which includes six counties: Clay, Fountain, Montgomery, Parke, Putnam, and Vigo counties. At the end of the quarter, Parke County REMC Operation Roundup board members, all of whom are volunteers, meet and decided which charitable organization will receive a grant for that quarter.  

 

The REMC Multi-County Community Trust board met on September 14, 2021 and awarded a total of $13,900 to four nonprofits located in the Parke County REMC area of operation; $6,000 of which went to the Putnam County Giving Tree program.

 

Application deadline for the next cycle is Jan. 4, 2022. Nonprofit groups, organizations or individuals who are interested in applying for funds and meet eligibility requirements, may obtain an application at Parke County REMC, http://www.pcremc.com or by calling 765-569-3133 (800-537-3913).

GPD to host car seat clinic at GHS

The Greencastle Police Department will be conducting its annual Car Seat Clinic on Wednesday, September 22 from 5:00 pm to 7:00 pm at the Greencastle High School, 910 E. Washington Street.

 

In order for the Greencastle Police Department to be a Permanent Fitting Station for child safety seats, they are required to host a Car Seat Clinic. Not surprising, they have chosen to do this in the middle of Child Passenger Safety Week, September 19-25, which is hosted by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA).

 

The NHTSA estimates that almost half of child safety seats are not installed properly.  Road injuries are the leading cause of death for children in the U.S. However, when in a car accident, a car seat can reduce the risk of infant fatality by 71 percent. National Highway Traffic Safety Administration recommends children remain in rear-facing car seats for as long as possible, preferably 3 years old. They also recommend children under the age of 13 ride in the backseat. For more information on child car seat safety, as well as how to find other car seat check events, go to www.nhtsa.gov/therightseat.

 

The Greencastle Police Department is partnering with the Greencastle School Corporation this year and will be hosting the event in the student parking lot of the Greencastle High School. GPD will have certified Car Seat Technicians on hand to inspect car seats that are currently being used. They are looking to make sure the child seat fits the child properly, if the child seat is in good working condition, whether or not is on a recall list, if the seat has gone past the expiration date, and whether or not seat is properly and safely installed in the vehicle.

 

If a problem or defect is discovered with a child seat, the technician can replace the seat. If any has any questions regarding the Car Seat Clinic, they can call 765-653-2925 and ask for Police Chief Tom Sutherlin, Captain Chris Jones, or Officer Angela Taylor.


Greencastle Community Center project moves forward

The talk of Greencastle getting a community center has been a long one, something residents have talked about for over a decade.  You might remember a survey back in 2015 asking what you would want to see in a community center. You might even remember the first Greencastle City Council meeting when Sue Murray was mayor and made the announcement that Greencastle was indeed looking into a community center. For years, it has always felt like nothing more than talk.

 

Jacob M. Widner, Councilor-at-Large, expressed his frustrations at the September City Council meeting about the community center taking so long to complete. He, like many others in the community, was beginning to feel like this was just another pipe dream to be talked about but not completed. However, as Adam Cohen, First Ward, pointed out, various members of the City Council had sat through lengthy meetings, trying to push the project through and are, in fact, making progress.

 

Getting a new community center is not as simple as throwing up a building and adding in some desired amenities. There are complicated and legal steps that need to be taken, before the ground can even be broken. Plans have to be drawn, a site has to be chosen and purchased, a construction crew has to be hired, and attorneys have to draft all the legally required paperwork. The plans have been made with an open house in 2019 showcasing the proposed architecture; partnerships have been solidified with Putnam County Hospital and the Wabash Valley YMCA; the land has been purchased, it will be located near Big Walnut Sports Park; and a construction team has been chosen, though the team cannot be announced legally yet. What is taking so long? What sparked the frustration in Widner, causing him to question the rest of City Council’s priorities on the project? Contracts. The City of Greencastle was expecting to receive the contract documents on September 1, 2021. However, for reasons unknown, the attorneys are running behind.

 

To assuage the concerns Widner was still feeling towards the project, Adam Cohen offered “…at this point, we’ve too come to turn back.”

 

The Community Center is coming, but with so many working parts, it is taking time.

Fall Armyworm Attacks

It’s gone. They ate everything. Nothing is left. Those are words used to describe the destruction caused by fall armyworms recently in Putnam County and throughout the state of Indiana. So, what have these fall armyworms ate? To be exact, we have heard reports of them damaging lawns, eating alfalfa fields, and destroying a deer plot. Normally, this pest is not of big concern in Indiana; however, this year it has done significant damage.

What does a fall armyworm look like? It is a caterpillar. The head is dark colored with a predominant white, inverted Y-shape on top of it. This inverted “Y” shape is what helps distinguishes the fall armyworm from other armyworm species. 

These pests typically remain in the subtropical climates for most of the year, but can be blown northward during hurricane season into the interior of the continent. Once in the interior, they lay eggs in masses on vertical objects (such as sides of buildings) and on young, tender foliage of late-developing crops. The larvae that develop from the eggs can be so numerous that they eventually chew the turf and other plants to the ground. In the case of alfalfa and fescue, they completely strip the foliage from the plants.

The fall armyworms that impacted us a few weeks ago have pupated and are beginning to emerge as adults. These adults will soon begin to mate and lay more eggs that will produce another, potentially destructive, larval generation. The new larval generation may not occur in the same place that the previous infestation occured. That is because the adults will disperse and find a more suitable location for their offspring which may be another nearby forage field or lawn. 

Since we know there is a potential for another generation of fall armyworms, there are a few things to keep in mind. Scout for egg clusters now. Scout for the next generation of larva around the last half of September and the first half of October. If you do find fall armyworms, you can try to manage them with an insecticide. There are a number of different insecticide active ingredients that you can use. For turf, some of the active ingredients include bifenthrin, carbaryl, permethrin, and trichlorfon. In alfalfa, some of the active ingredients include carbaryl, cyfluthrin, and permethrin. If you are going to treat an alfalfa field, be mindful of the harvest restrictions listed on the label.

When selecting an insecticide, try to use a formula that is a liquid because it provides better coverage and works more quickly. If you are utilizing an insecticide in your lawn, try to mow before applying it because mowing will help with the application. As always, if you do decide to use an insecticide, remember to read and follow all label instructions.

Visit our homepage at www.extension.purdue.edu/putnam or you can contact the local Purdue Extension Office by calling 765.653.8411 for more information regarding this week’s column topic or to RSVP for upcoming events. It is always best to call first to assure items are ready when you arrive and to RSVP for programs. While many publications are free, some do have a fee. Purdue University is an equal access/equal opportunity institution. All times listed are Eastern Time.

Upcoming Events:

September 21, 28 – Fall Walking Group, 9am, Big Walnut Sports Park, register at
                                765-301-7641

September 22 – Recognizing Hazards Around the Farm webinar, 12 pm register at
                           https://tinyurl.com/WIAWebinars21

September 27 – ServSafe 1-Day Class and Online Exam, 9am-4pm, Fairgrounds, register
                at https://purdue.edu/servsafe/workshops

October 5, 12, 19, 26 – Fall Walking Group, 9am, Big Walnut Sports Park, register at
                           765-301-7641

October 19 – Medicare & Diabetes, Fairgrounds, 2 pm, register at 765-653-8411

October 19 – Pork: The No Hogwash Protein webinar, 12 pm register at
                      https://tinyurl.com/WIAWebinars21


Berry Street Festival returns

Its official, Berry Street Festival is making a comeback on Saturday, October 2,  from 10:00 am to 6:00 pm.

 

A tradition, thought to be forgotten is being rejuvenated by a new generation. Jennifer Grumme, who fondly remembers the Berry Street Festival, and Derek Chastain, who had always heard about it but was never able to attend, decided the over 70 year tradition was too important to the community and the neighborhood to let it disappear.

 

After researching the long history of Berry Street Festival, Jennifer and Derek learned it started as a picnic in 1947. A Berry Street resident, Russell Myers, encouraged his neighbors to join together for a picnic. This continued for 15 years, however, interest began dissipating as the original neighbors passed away or moved to a new location. It would be 13 years before Berry Street would get its first revival.

 

In 1975, Joyce Leer and Jackie Young, residents of Berry Street, decided the neighborhood could benefit from gathering once again. This time, however, they decided it was a good time for the neighbors to also host a yard sale and it started growing again. As the years passed, it became tradition to host the festival on the first Saturday of October and generations would carry on as the time came active Berry Street Festival committee members stepped down. As time moved on, it became harder and harder to keep up with the hosting responsibilities. 2017 would be the last year of an official Berry Street Festival.

 

Now, after rough years involving divisive politics, the Covid-19 pandemic, and the stress of quarantine and trying to stay safe in our new normal, Jennifer and Derek are hoping to make this an annual tradition again. They have received donations to help cover the cost of the port-a-potties, as well as a cotton candy machine from Headley Hardware (proceeds benefiting next year’s festival) and vendors ready to set up their wares and food. Jennifer and Derek met with the Greencastle City Council last night and were approved for street closures; something they felt was needed as they have live music scheduled. They are hoping to add other amenities, like bounce houses, to ensure families of all types find something to enjoy at this long held tradition.

 

There is still time to donate or sign up to participate. Contact Jennifer Grumme at grummej@gmail.com or call 765-721-0758. Or, you can contact Derek Chastain at derekchastain89@icloud.com or by calling 317-358-5267.

Flags to half-staff in remembrance of 9/11

Governor Eric J. Holcomb is directing flags statewide to be flown at half-staff in honor of Patriot Day.

 

Flags should be flown at half-staff from sunrise until sunset on Saturday, Sept. 11.

 

Gov. Holcomb also asks businesses and residents to lower their flags to half-staff in remembrance of the victims of the Sept. 11.

September is Better Breakfast Month

Kids who fuel up in the morning focus and concentrate better in the classroom and perform better on math, reading and standardized tests. They also have fewer behavior problems and are less likely to be tardy. Eating breakfast also can help children maintain a healthy weight. Unfortunately, studies show many children don’t eat breakfast every day.

 

Breakfast is a perfect time to enjoy fruits and vegetables children need for optimal health. Try fresh seasonal fruit alone or in cereal, add frozen fruits to yogurt or toss chopped vegetables into an omelet.

 

Healthy Breakfasts for Busy Mornings

Get the morning nutrition you need with these quick breakfast ideas.

  • Instant oatmeal: Make it with fat-free or low-fat milk instead of water. Toss in raisins or dried cranberries and chopped walnuts. Or mix in ¼ cup unsweetened applesauce and sprinkle with apple pie spice or cinnamon.
  • Yogurt parfait: Layer fat-free or low-fat plain yogurt with your crunchy cereal and blueberries.
  • Breakfast smoothie: Blend low-fat milk, frozen strawberries and a banana.
  • Toaster waffle: Toast and top with nut butter and apple slices.
  • Pita egg sandwich: Stuff a whole-wheat pita with a sliced, hard-cooked egg and low-fat shredded cheese.
  • Banana roll-up: Spread peanut butter on a whole-wheat tortilla. Add a peeled, whole banana and roll it up.
  • Bagel and veggies: Spread hummus on a whole-grain toasted bagel. Top with sliced cucumbers and tomatoes.
  • English muffin: Add lean ham and low-fat Swiss cheese to a toasted whole-grain English muffin.

Get Yourself Prepped

While breakfast might seem like a hurdle in your busy morning, nutritious food doesn't need to take extra time to prepare. Try the following tips:

  • Get organized the night before. Get out a pan for pancakes or a blender for smoothies. Prepare muffin or waffle mix so it's ready to cook in the morning. Set out a few boxes of whole-grain cereal for kids to choose — all they'll have to do in the morning is add milk.
  • Set the alarm 10 minutes earlier. Hectic mornings can make it difficult for kids (and parents) to find time for breakfast. Waking up just a few minutes earlier provides time to squeeze in a quick morning meal.
  • Pack your breakfast to go. If there's no time to eat at home, plan a nutritious option to eat on the bus or when you arrive at work. Busy teens can grab a banana, a bag of trail mix and a carton of milk. Don't forget to see if your school offers a breakfast program.
  • Help make sure your kids have an appetite. Many kids aren't hungry for breakfast because they snack too much at night. Try offering lighter snacks in the evening and you might be surprised how much hungrier they are in the morning. In addition, try having your children dress first and eat second. Kids are more likely to feel hungry once they have a chance to wake up.
  • Be a positive role model. Children will mimic their parents' behavior, so make it a habit to sit down and eat a nutritious breakfast with your kids every morning.

Whatever your morning routine, remember that breakfast is an important meal for the family, and doesn't have to be very time-consuming. When you eat well in the morning, you and your family will be on the nutrition fast track for a high-energy day. Source: Eat Right

 

Visit our homepage at www.extension.purdue.edu/putnam or you can contact the local office by calling 765.653.8411 for more information regarding this week’s column topic or to RSVP for upcoming events. Office hours are Monday thru Friday from 8:00am-12:00pm and 1:00pm-4:00pm. Evening and lunch appointments are available, upon request. It is always best to call first to assure items are ready when you arrive and to RSVP for programs. While many publications are free, some do have a fee. All times listed are Eastern Time. Purdue University is an equal access/equal opportunity/affirmative action institution.

 

Upcoming Events

September 14, 21, 28, Oct. 5, 12, 19 – Fall Walking Group, 9am, Big Walnut Sports Park, register at 765-301-7641

September 22 – Recognizing Hazards Around the Farm webinar, 12 pm register at https://tinyurl.com/WIAWebinars21

September 27 – ServSafe 1-Day Class and Online Exam, 9am-4pm, Fairgrounds, register at https://purdue.edu/servsafe/workshops

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