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Tuesday, February 19, 2019
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  • Saturday, February 16, 2019 4:00 AM
    Many adults begin to become less active as they age. But regular physical activity in older adults can be very beneficial. Physical activity can help delay, prevent or manage many costly chronic diseases. Although many know physical activity is helpful nearly 31 million adults over 50 are inactive. It is important that you assess your needs and abilities before starting any kind of exercise routine. If you have been inactive for a long period of time or are concerned about how increasing your physical activity may affect you, consult with your doctor. They can help you choose the right type, intensity and duration of the exercises that would work best for. 
    It is recommended that older adults participate in aerobic activity for at least 150 minutes each week. Over time, regular aerobic activity can make the heart and cardiovascular system stronger. Some examples of aerobic activity would be walking, swimming, dancing or riding a bike. If you are unable to reach the 150 minutes each week, you should be as physically active as your abilities will allow. 
    It is recommended that older adults also participate in muscle-strengthening activities at least 2 days a week. When doing so you should include all of the major muscle groups: legs, hips, back, chest, abdomen, shoulders and arms. Some examples activities would include using resistance bands, weight machines, hand held weights or even just carrying groceries. 
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  • Tuesday, February 12, 2019 4:00 AM
    The Montgomery County 4-H program will be offering a great opportunity for YOU to come and learn about the 4-H program and get all of your questions answered. The New 4-H Member Orientation will be held on Wednesday, Feb. 13 from 6:00-7:30 p.m. in the Exhibit Hall at the Montgomery County 4-H Fairgrounds. RSVP’s are due by Monday, Feb. 11 and there is no cost to attend. To RSVP, please contact the Extension office at (765) 364-6363. Refreshments will be provided, as well as some 4-H resources, so please be sure to RSVP so that we can ensure we have adequate supplies for participants. 
    This FREE orientation is for youth currently in grades 3-12, particularly those in their 1st or 2nd year of 4-H. However, you do not have to be a current 4-H member to attend. If you are interested in learning more or have questions about 4-H, then this is a great opportunity for you come and learn. Parents/guardians of youth are welcome and encouraged to attend. 
    The New 4-H Member Orientation is for youth and their parents/guardians to come and learn about 4-H trips and opportunities, projects, Green Records books, and get all of your questions answered. The goal of this orientation is to get your 4-H experience started off on the right foot! You will even have a chance to talk with some of Montgomery County 4-H’s tenured 4-H members. They will be there to share their experiences in the 4-H program and give you tips and tricks for how you can get involved. 
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  • Tuesday, February 12, 2019 4:00 AM
    After experiencing a temperature swing from -15 to 60°F in the last week and a half, it’s hard to believe that spring is just around the corner. But with spring on the way (just 40 days away!), so is the 2019 growing season. Before field operations get underway, we invite you to attend the annual Montgomery County Ag Outlook program to take place on Wednesday, Feb. 13 from 8:30 a.m. to 10:30 a.m. 
    This event, sponsored by Hoosier Heartland State Bank, is your opportunity to review last year’s volatile commodity market activity and hear predictions for 2019 with Michael Langemeier, Ag Economist from Purdue University. Dr. Langemeier will discuss the impacts of input costs on the upcoming growing season and explore issues in international trade that could affect grain prices through the end of 2019. He will be available to answer any questions you might have during the last 30 minutes or so of the program.
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  • Wednesday, January 9, 2019 4:00 AM
    Indiana 4-H enrollment is now open in Montgomery County through January 15, 2019. 4-H is a premier source of enjoyable, educational programs to help young people reach their full potential. 
    Indiana 4-H is the state’s largest youth development program for grades 3-12, reaching over 200,000 youth in all 92 counties. 4-H is open to all youth in grades 3-12 and Mini 4-H is offered to grades K-2. So don’t wait and miss the opportunity to join the Club. 4-H prepares young people to be leaders in their community and around the world through hands-on experiences alongside their peers and caring adults.
    In Montgomery County, approved adult volunteers teach young people specific skills related to a wide variety of subjects through hands-on, experiential learning. Youth also develop leadership and citizenship skills by participating in one of our organized 4-H Clubs. Subjects include: science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM); agriculture; citizenship; healthy living; art; consumer and family sciences; and more. In 2013, a Tufts University study showed that 4-H members also excel in positive youth development areas compared to peers, including: 
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  • Saturday, December 29, 2018 4:00 AM
    Many of you are probably already thinking about how you are going to be a better you in 2019. The three most common New Year’s Resolutions are Spend Less, Eat Healthier and Exercise More. If you are like me you need to do all three. Which is why I have planned to teach three programs beginning in January to address these three goals. 
    Cooking Under Pressure
    On January 11th I will be hosting a lunch and learn titled Cooking Under Pressure. Participants will learn how to use an electric pressure cooker, how to make healthy fast meals, and plan meals to save money on groceries. Join me on January 11th at noon in the Crawfordsville Library, Room B, for a tasty healthy learning lunch. Please RSVP by January 9th. 
    Dining with Diabetes
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  • 4-H and the spirit of giving back
    Wednesday, December 26, 2018 4:00 AM
    Within the 4-H program, we believe in the power of young people. We see that every child has valuable strengths and real influence to improve the world around us. The 4-H program is America’s largest youth development organization, empowering nearly six million young people across the United States with the skills to lead for a lifetime. 
    The 4-H program teaches youth the importance of giving back to not only their community but the world around them. According to a Tufts University study, 4-H’ers are more active citizens. They are 4 times more likely to actively contribute to their communities and 2 times more likely to be civically active.
    4-H members contribute to their communities in a variety of ways. Recently, the Montgomery County 4-H Junior Leaders held an overnight lock-in and collected items to donate to the Animal Welfare League of Montgomery County. Junior Leaders is a program for youth in grades 7-12 and focuses on the development of leadership skills, as well as service learning and fellowship. They also provide guidance and mentorship to younger 4-H members, assist with local and county 4-H activities, and have FUN! This group of great leaders collected 132 items to donate to the Animal Welfare League. Items ranged from office supplies, animal beds, food, toys, and more! More importantly, these youth saw a need in their community and worked to meet that need through giving back. 
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  • Winter Weather Phenomena
    Saturday, December 15, 2018 4:00 AM
    We’ve had some interesting weather phenomena the last couple of weeks in Montgomery County. You might have noticed freezing fog, “fancy” frost, or fuzzy snow. Each of these phenomena are caused by a specific set of conditions that we tend to see throughout winter in the Midwest. Here are the details on a few that I have seen recently and another that I look forward to seeing (hopefully) later this year!
    Freezing fog is not all that different from fog during the warmer months. It forms when the air near the ground is very humid and calm and is often seen in the early morning (maybe during your commute to work). The water vapor in this humid air begins to condense and form the ground-level cloud we call fog. The major difference, however, between freezing fog and “warm” fog is that the water within freezing fog becomes supercooled, and will instantly freeze to any cold surface that it touches, which produces the next phenomenon…
    Rime is what we see when water vapor (usually found within freezing fog) condenses to liquid and then freezes to a surface. It’s the frozen cousin of dew, along with hoarfrost. Rime typically appears as shaggy white spikes clinging to tree branches, and is often found on clear mornings after freezing fog has disappeared. Sometimes, light winds can sculpt rime into interesting shapes before it freezes completely solid.
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  • Wednesday, December 5, 2018 4:00 AM
    Americans tend to gain about one to two pounds during the holidays. While this doesn’t sound like much, research tells us that this adds up over the years. If you gain 1 to 2 pounds each year and never lose from the year before, this can result in a 10 pound weight gain. And it is so much harder, and less fun, to take off than it was to put on. 
    Don’t skip meals.
    We often take the mentality of skipping meals so that we can save the calories for a later meal, that we know is going to be high in calories. This is a bad idea. This can actually cause you to eat more. Just like you have heard since childhood, never skip breakfast. People who consume breakfast tend to eat fewer calories throughout the day. Make sure you are including high fiber foods. Fruits and Vegetables can be eaten in larger quantities to satisfy hunger, while being low in calories. 
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  • Students at Hoover Elementary join 4-H and Google in Computer Science Challenge
    Wednesday, November 28, 2018 4:00 AM
    The 2018 4-H National Youth Science Day inspires kids to “Code Your World” in a four-part experience. Offered through the Montgomery County 4-H program, students in Coding Club at Hoover Elementary, joined more than 150,000 children across the country in leading the 11th annual 4-H National Youth Science Day (4-H NYSD) challenge throughout the last several weeks. This year’s challenge, Code Your World, teaches young people computer science skills through four engaging hands-on activities.
    Youth in Hoover’s Coding Club, learned various computational thinking concepts, as well as the language used by computers and coders. Computational thinking concepts that youth explored include decomposition, algorithm design, pattern recognition, and abstraction. They were able to bring their name to life by building a customized animation code, including music and sound. Youth also explored computer language and the specifics of writing detailed code. 
    Developed by Google and West Virginia University Extension Service, this hands-on experience includes a computer-based activity on Google’s CS First platform, as well as three unplugged activities that bring coding to life through games and interaction. Code Your World is perfect for first-time and beginner coders, ages 8 to 14.
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  • Sunday, November 18, 2018 9:23 PM
    The month of November is typically a time of giving, being thankful, and supporting those in the community. Today, I am thankful for the great financial opportunities that the 4-H program provides to help youth pursue their passions and dreams. One of the many ways that 4-H gives back to youth, is through awarding scholarships. In partnership with the Indiana 4-H Foundation, the Indiana 4-H Youth Development program annually awards more than $125,000.00 in scholarships to 4-H members to purse post-secondary education. Scholarships are awarded to recognize youth participating in Indiana’s 4-H Youth Development Program on their achievements and life skill development resulting from their participation in a variety of 4-H experiences. The variety of 4-H experiences is vast and reaffirms that there is something for everyone in the 4-H program!
    4-H youth can start applying for scholarships through the 4-H program starting as early as 10th grade! To assist current 4-H members in filling out their scholarship applications for the Indiana 4-H Youth Development program, I will be hosting a Scholarship Workshop on Tuesday, December 12th from 6:00-7:30 pm. This workshop will take place in the Exhibit Hall at the Montgomery County 4-H Fairgrounds. This workshop is for 4-H youth currently in grades 10-12 and will focus on completing the Indiana 4-H Scholarships. Participants will get a packet with tools and information that will help guide students on how to properly fill out scholarships to enhance their application. Please call the Extension office at (765)364-6363 by Monday, December 10th. Parents/guardians are welcome and encouraged to attend. Information for completing the Indiana 4-H scholarships can be found at https://extension.purdue.edu/4h/Pages/scholarships.aspx.
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  •  What makes for good peak color?
    Thursday, November 8, 2018 4:00 AM
    Montgomery County is closing in on peak fall color – that time of year where the majority of deciduous trees are displaying their most vibrant colors. We are just a bit behind schedule from our average peak color time, which tends to fall in mid-October. But how fun that we get to enjoy near-peak color during Halloween and early November!
    The factors that drive color change in trees include the length of our days, daytime and nighttime temperatures, and autumn rainfall. Color change occurs in trees when they sense the right combination of factors, like shorter days and cooler nighttime temperatures. Those two factors in particular signal to the tree that winter is coming and that it is time to turn off photosynthesis for the year.
    Usually we see green leaves on trees because they are chock full of chlorophyll, the molecule that drives the process of photosynthesis. Photosynthesis is the way plants make food from sunlight and carbon dioxide. Chlorophyll molecules don’t last forever, however, so trees must manufacture chlorophyll throughout the year to keep the photosynthetic factory working at full tilt. When fall weather starts to roll in, trees begin going dormant by halting production of the chlorophyll molecule. Since no more chlorophyll is made, the chlorophyll still present in tree leaves breaks down and leaves only pigments behind, which gives us our brilliant fall foliage. Eventually, trees shed the leaves entirely. In order to shed them safely, without opening up any wounds on the tree that would expose the bark to disease, a process called abscission takes place. Trees form a layer of special cells at the base of each leaf stem, or petiole. When this layer is fully formed, leaves fall away from the tree leaving a small scar behind. This is the leaf scar, which is distinctive from tree to tree. Leaf scars are one of the most important characteristics used to identify trees in the winter.
    Before we make it to winter, however, we have a lot of colorful foliage to enjoy! Weather plays a role in whether fall foliage looks beautiful or turns prematurely brown and crunchy. Here’s what a few different situations can do to fall leaf colors:
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  • Tuesday, October 30, 2018 9:19 PM
    Halloween is here, and every parent’s nightmare is about to come true. Kids running around the house screaming, and perhaps even getting sick from their sugar high. Every child, and maybe adult, is going to eat some candy and sugar on Halloween. That’s ok, Halloween is meant to be a fun day filled with costumes, scary stories, and candy. 
    Halloween, and really any day of the week, is all about balance. This candy-filled holiday is just one day of the year; so allow your children to eat the candy, but think of some ways to incorporate some nutrition into their day as well. For example, make sure your children eat healthy meals at breakfast, lunch, and dinner. Hopefully those nutritious foods will leave less room for candy. There are a lot of great ideas out there to make Halloween-themed, healthy snacks. Make guacamole that is green slime, or white chocolate covered strawberry’s that look like ghosts. 
    For those sweet treats that are being offered, think about the portion. Get mini-sized candy bars, cupcakes, and cookies. Serve your children the treats instead of leaving them out, where hands can grab and eat as many as they want. 
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  • Thursday, October 18, 2018 4:00 AM
    Fall is one of my favorite times because it is 4-H ENROLLMENT TIME! I do a wide variety of 4-H recruitment events throughout the community and get lots of great questions about what 4-H is, do you have to live on a farm/own an animal to be in 4-H, and what does 4-H offer. These are great questions and frequently asked. Therefore, I hope to answer some of that below. 
    The 4-H organization is America’s largest youth development organization and continues to grow each year! 4-H provides a wide variety of opportunities that empower young people with the skills to lead for a lifetime. Youth do not have to live on a farm or own an animal to be in 4-H. Youth collaborate with caring adult mentors to lead hands-on projects in areas like science, health, agriculture and citizenship. Mentors provide a positive environment where youth learn by doing. This 4-H experience is delivered by a community of more than 100 public universities across the nation. In Indiana, Purdue University delivers the 4-H experience to close to 140,000 youth! 
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  • Wednesday, October 17, 2018 7:09 PM
    By now, you’ve probably become familiar with that strange smell – a little like coriander, a little like burnt rubber, and just overall pungent and off-putting. As soon as that smell wafts under your nose, you know what to look for: little shield-shaped, grayish brown insects with stripey antennae. Yes, it’s everyone’s favorite friend in the fall, the brown marmorated stink bug (BMSB).
    BMSB is an invasive species introduced from east Asia, where it is an agricultural pest. Unsurprisingly, the bug has become an agricultural pest here in the Midwest as well. First seen in Pennsylvania around 1998, BMSB has spread throughout the US and Canada. It’s not to be confused with our native stink bug, but it seems like they’re not as commonly seen these days as the non-native one. 
    Stink bugs typically become active in late spring to mate and lay eggs. The nymphs that hatch from these eggs will cause agricultural damage as they feed (they will eat anything from tomatoes to soybeans). By the time fall rolls around, these nymphs will have reached adult stage and will start looking for a place to spend the winter.
    BMSB seeks entry into structures and homes beginning in late September and early October. They might hitchhike on your shoulder or shirtsleeve before flying to a wall or resting on the carpet. They may also crawl in through window seals and doorframes, particularly if they aren’t well-sealed. Similar to the Asian lady beetle, these insects will congregate on hot surfaces (like brick on the south side of a home), sometimes making it difficult to enter the home without a swarm of bugs following you inside. 
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  • Thursday, October 4, 2018 10:11 PM
    Walking is one of the best types of physical activities because it is accessible to almost anyone, doesn’t require specific skills or equipment, is inexpensive, can be done in a variety of settings (in your neighborhood, at the mall, around a track), and can be performed at any chosen intensity. As the weather starts to cool off, don’t let that scare you from getting outside. Just add an extra layer and enjoy the beautiful fall colors. The sugar creek trail provides a beautiful setting for fall walking. 
    How much walking and physical activity do I need?
    The current U.S. Physical Activity Guidelines recommend that adults get at least 150 minutes (2 hours and 30 minutes) each week of moderate intensity physical activity, such as brisk walking. This activity should be accumulated 10 minutes or more at a time. 
    How to get started
    • Start slow and easy, walk 10 minutes to start.
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The Paper of Montgomery County,
a division of Sagamore News Media 
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