July 2015

The Iowa Farm Crisis of the 1980s with Dr. Neil Harl

July 29, 2015 - 7:00am -- ron

A look back at the Iowa Farm crisis of the 1980's; what happened, why it happened and what it means in the context of today's economic landscape.

Joe Hayneck, a former ISU engineering student, was the son of a Southern Iowa farm family and grew up during the farm crisis of the 1980s. He tells his story here with fragments of music from a musical - Farmer Song - that he and his mother wrote about the farm crisis. It was eventually performed at the New York fringe festival. Today, Joe works in Des Moines as an engineer but his home in Murray, Iowa, out of which he also runs a radio station – KSOI community radio.

Dr. Neil Harl, explains why the farm crisis happened and shares general insights on the economics of farming, as well as lending and interest rate management and the consequences of government policies. Harl is a Charles F. Curtiss Distinguished Professor in Agriculture at Iowa State University, Emeritus Professor of Economics, and Former Director of the Center for International Agricultural Finance. He is also a member of the Iowa Bar.

Fred Johnson, Georgie Tsushima, Emerald Ash Borer, and Shagstock

July 27, 2015 - 5:28pm -- ron

Originally broadcast 07/27/2015
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At the Unity Church's memorial service for former Ames resident and educator Fred Johnson, Fred's friends and family explain the meaning of the wooden radio displayed at the front of the room, which literally served as the urn for his ashes.

A gathering of more than 200 people at Brookside Park honored the memory of Georgie Tsushima, reknowned skateboarder and filmmaker from Ames, who died at the age of 26. Friend and skateboarder Derek Siedelmann describes Georgie and his life, the effect he had on many, and the moving gathering that culminated with a skateboard thumping salute and a rainbow in the sky. Derek tells us how skateboarding feels.

Ames Public Relations Officer Susan Gwiasda tells us that the Emerald Ash Borer epidemic is 10 miles from Ames and the proactive measures Ames is taking in anticipation of the destruction of Ash trees. Amy Yoakum, Natural Resource Specialist, and Erica Eaves, Outreach Coordinator at Story County Conservation, describe the innovative Wasp Watchers biosurveillance volunteer program to identify the presence of emerald ash borers. Amy also provides information on how to identify stricken trees.

Nevada: County Fair and Briggs Terrace Evergreen Lane

July 22, 2015 - 7:00am -- ron

Nevada resident Jessica Eyanson offers a portrait of community life and spirit in Nevada as she describes various ways residents gather to help and support each other, as well as the Nevada and Colo volunteer fire departments.

Kris Corbin, a volunteer at the Nevada Historical Society and Vice Chairman of the Board, gives some background history and a tour of Briggs Terrace Evergreen Lane, the museum/mansion in Eastern Nevada, whose grounds also house historic structures including carriage houses, the George Child log house, and Halley School. Corbin explains how and why the estate house was built and tells us about the people that lived there, offering a glimpse into early life in Nevada.

In “Tuning into Agriculture,” reporter Greta Anderson interviews Chasity Moody, a young farmer and competitor at the Story County Fair happening in Nevada. Chastity describes how she has prepared herself and the animals she will show.

Story County Fair and 4-H History

July 15, 2015 - 7:00am -- ron

Originally broadcast 07/15/2015
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We highlighted the Story County Youth Fair, coming up on July 25-29, and 4-H, the organization that provides the structure for youth who participate in the fair.

This year, 2015, marks the 75th anniversary of the first countywide fair held at the Story County Fairgrounds in Nevada. We were joined by guests Carolyn and Ralph Manning, retired from ISU Extension, who have written a history of 4-H in Story County, and Melissa McEnany, an Extension employee who works with the Clover Kids, the 4-H program for children in grades K-3.

During the second half of the program, we talked with current 4-Hers Lauren Rosberg, Justine Rosberg, and Katie Hodge, who shared some of their experiences with 4-H and the Story County Fair.

We closed with our weekly Tuning In To Agriculture segment. Greta Anderson talked with sweet corn grower Chuck Brekke about the sweet corn harvest and ISU assistant professor and extension specialist Ajay Nair about growing degree days.