Supporting Oldham County Agriculture

The following Agriculture & Natural Resources articles originally published in the 2017 Report to the People and reprinted in the 2017 Winter edition of the Oldham County Extension Newsletter.

“If it wasn’t for 4-H I do not think I would have developed the skills that have helped me take care of my own horse, and I would not have gained the knowledge that is helping me [study pre-veterinary science.]”
– Oldham County 4-H alumni

Supporting Oldham’s #1 Ag Commodity

The 2012 Kentucky Equine Survey reported a total value of Oldham County’s equine and equine-related assets of $163 million. Oldham County ranks 4th in Kentucky in value of equine sold, 5th in equine operation income, 6th in value of equine and equine acres, and 7th in equine population.

Oldham County Extension supports farm managers and horse owners through site visits to help troubleshoot problems and improve pastures and horse health. This includes improving pastures through reseeding, fertility management, weed control, and grazing management; improving horse diets; and hay testing.

The Extension Service also provides equine programs on worming, pasture management, vaccinations, showmanship, and tack care. Between July 2016 and June 2017, the county 4-H and agriculture agents, as well as numerous community equine professionals and veterinarians, taught seven educational sessions to 4-H members and horse owners. Thirty-six repeat attendees learned valuable horse care information that improved health and safety of both horse and rider.

oc 4-h horse club

Oldham County 4-H’ers at the Kentucky State 4-H Horse Show.

Through monthly educational meetings, 4-H horse club members build social and emotional skills like accountability, empathy, leadership, and confidence.

Beef Field Day

In Oldham County, pasture makes up 32% of available farmland and provides grazing for livestock. Livestock are important to Oldham County’s economy, with cattle alone representing over 2.4 million dollars in sales in 2012, according to the Census of Agriculture.

Because of the importance and prevalence of cattle production in the area, agriculture extension agents in Oldham, Trimble, Henry, and Shelby Counties have organized and held annual Regional Beef Field Days for farmers since 2005. These field days offer farmers an opportunity to see how production practices work on other farms. Field days also promote implementation of new practices that improve production efficiency while protecting natural resources, which are goals outlined in the county plan of work.

In 2016, this event was held at an Oldham County Farm. During the field day, 250 Louisville area producers attended and learned about:

  • Heavy Use Feeding Areas and Other Conservation Practices that Protect Soil and Water
  • Proper Handling Facilities to Minimize Animal Stress
  • Good Herd Health Practices and Update on Antibiotics Use

Farms make up one-half of total land acreage in Oldham County.

“Looking at the handling facilities setup helped me decide on changes needed for my own system.”
– Oldham County farmer

Written by Lauren State, Oldham County Extension Staff Assistant; Traci Missun, Oldham County Agriculture & Natural Resources Agent; and Kelly Woods, Oldham County 4-H Youth Development Agent.

Advertisements

Extension Teaches Food Safety & Nutrition Classes

The following Agriculture & Natural Resources and Family & Consumer Science articles originally published in the 2017 Report to the People and reprinted in the 2017 Winter edition of the Oldham County Extension Newsletter.

Food Safety in Oldham County

Oldham and surrounding counties are home to many farmers markets, roadside farm markets, and community supported agriculture sites. Additionally, some farms sell to grocery stores and restaurants. A concern for producers and consumers is safe production, harvest, handling, and storage of food to minimize risk of microbial and other contaminant-related sicknesses.

farmers market produce

The University of Kentucky Cooperative Extension Service and Kentucky Department of Agriculture developed Good Agricultural Practices (GAP) guidelines to reduce the likelihood of produce contamination. It focuses on safe techniques and inputs on all levels of the farm to fork food chain. Farmers that utilize GAP principles in their production proactively take steps to reduce the possibility of producing unsafe food products. County Extension Offices provide GAP training to producers throughout the state.

From 2008 to 2017:

  • Oldham County Extension has provided 15 GAP training sessions to 56 producers.
  • These producers sell products in at least 44 markets, community supported agriculture sites, grocery stores, and restaurants.
  • These producers sell in Oldham, Jefferson, Henry, Shelby, Trimble, and Barren counties.

At a conservative estimate of 500 consumers reached through each market, this represents a minimum of 22,000 consumers purchasing foods that have been safely produced by local farmers. GAP is an ongoing training program offered periodically throughout the year at Oldham County Extension, with training verified through the Kentucky Department of Agriculture.

oc canning classes

Oldham County Extension also targets food safety during canning classes. Following Canning Boot Camp in June 2017, twenty-five Oldham Countians reported that they could identify research-based methods for home food preservation, safe methods of canning low and high acid foods, and signs of spoilage in home canned goods. Participants with intermediate to skilled canning experience indicated plans to increase the amount of food that they canned.

Stretching Your Food Dollars

Although Oldham County is one of Kentucky’s healthiest and wealthiest counties, over 5,100 residents live in poverty. Struggling Oldham County residents learn food budgeting tips at the Oldham County Extension office.

Over the past year, the FCS agent taught a series of seven Economical Entrée classes for Extension Homemakers and the general public. This “train the trainer” program reached more than 1,533 people in Oldham and surrounding counties. Post-lesson survey results showed that 99% of participants understood the entrée’s role according to the Dietary Guidelines for Americans, 95% could identify economical proteins, and 94% felt confident planning meals using economical entrees. A six month follow-up survey revealed 89% of participants use new skills to prepare economical entrees at home and estimate saving $25.00 or more on monthly food expenses.

economical entrees

Extension programming emphasizes utilizing available resources to help provide nutritious food for a growing family. In 2013, Sheila N. attended a series of “Cooking on a Budget” classes that were held at the Oldham County Extension office. Her husband being an avid hunter, Sheila was looking for ways to make meals with the wild game that her family would find more appealing. Along with meal planning and money-saving strategies, the FCS agent provided easy and economical recipes that included venison and other wild game. Recently, Sheila reported that her family now boasts that they have the most delicious meals using wild game. Plus, Sheila has been able to be a stay at home mom and provide care for her children.

To help support individuals and families in tough economic times, Oldham County Extension partners with the Dare To Care Food Bank to provide economic cooking and nutrition classes using the foods donated to the mobile pantry. Participants learn about preparing healthy recipes, meal planning, buying vegetables and fruit in season, and other ways to stretch a food budget. Of the 70 plus families that receive supplemental food each month, more than 40% report using recipes and tips to save an average of $20.00 a week.

Inmates Pursue Healthier Lifestyles

The National Institute on Drug Abuse asserts that successful addiction treatment helps an addict become drug-free, stay drug-free, and be productive member of the family. In an effort to address the latter, the Oldham County Extension EFNEP assistant partnered with Roederer Correctional Complex to bring nutrition education to their substance abuse program. Lessons from the Healthy Choices curriculum focus on helping prepare inmates for a healthier lifestyle upon returning to their families.

Since the fall of 2016, approximately 60 participants have learned how to use nutrition labels to find healthy food choices for their families, proper food safety techniques, and stretch food dollars. Extension also provides low-salt, low-sugar versions of common recipes, such as Bean and Corn Salsa for healthier tailgating.

healthy food choices

Multiple participants noted the importance in keeping a daily food journal, especially in the case of previous health issues. One man expressed his hope that his diabetic wife could use this strategy to improve her eating habits.

Written by Chris Duncan, Oldham County Extension Family & Consumer Science Agent; Lauren State Fernandez, Oldham County Extension Staff Assistant; Traci Missun, Oldham County Extension Agriculture & Natural Resources Agent; and Sherry Ragsdale, Expanded Food and Nutrition Program Assistant.

Loneliness Affects Your Health

The Following Family & Consumer Sciences article printed in the October 26, 2017 edition of the Oldham Era.

loneliness affects your health

Socialization Affects Your Health

Just as we need food and water to survive, we also need meaningful social relationships and connections. We are wired for social contact, so going without it increases the risks to jeopardize our overall health, well-being, and quality of life. While it is okay to feel lonely and to be alone on occasion, chronic loneliness can cause serious health concerns. Researchers continue to demonstrate how important meaningful relationships with others are to our mental, emotional, and physical health.

If not addressed, loneliness can lead to social isolation, physical and mental decline, and depression. Recent studies have shown that social isolation can also lead to a number of negative health impacts including poor sleeping patterns, a disrupted immune system, poor nutrition, destruction of arteries, and high blood pressure. When the need for socialization is not met, it can also negatively affect learning, memory, and motivation.

Loneliness can occur at any age and can be a normal feeling — especially after a break-up, a move to a new location, loss of a loved one, or exclusion from a group. On the other hand, chronic loneliness (feeling lonely, isolated, or lacking in close connections for an extended period of time) can bring about discomfort and distress, including feeling sad, empty, isolated, distanced from others, deprived, and filled with longing. These feelings lead to many problems. Children and teens, for example, are more likely to adopt an outcast status, have problems in or drop out of school, or even become delinquent. Lonely adults are at greater risk of alcoholism and depression. Those living alone are at greater risk of suicide.

Loneliness is particularly prevalent among older adults. As we age, our social circle shrinks, which makes it more difficult to have meaningful interactions with others. According to a 2013 AARP study, the percentage of adults who say they are lonely has doubled from 20 percent in the 1980s to 40 percent today. About 30 percent of adults older than 65 live alone. That number jumps to 50 percent in adults over 85.

loneliness negatively affects health

If you are experiencing loneliness, you are not alone, and you don’t have to be as there are many ways to increase your social interactions. Consider the following tips:

  • Find a cause to be passionate about and donate your time. There are many community organizations in Oldham County in need of volunteers: Humane Society of Oldham County, Oldham County Red Cross, Crossroads Pregnancy Center, Dare to Care Food Bank, and many more. Not only will you get to interact with others, but you will also get satisfaction from giving back.
  • Don’t miss opportunities to interact with your family. Attend family events like reunions and weddings. If you have grandkids who live close, consider attending one of their extracurricular activities, such as a ballgame or a dance recital. The socialization will positively impact your health and also encourage the child to practice and try harder.
  • Take up a hobby. Find something you are passionate about or learn more about something you already enjoy. Consider joining a group that shares your interests, such as a writing group at the Oldham County Public Library or the knitters at Friends and Fiber in La Grange.

The Oldham County Cooperative Extension Service offers many opportunities for social interaction including Extension Homemaker clubs, Master Gardener programs, Master Clothing Volunteers, Master Cattleman, 4-H volunteer opportunities, and all kinds of classes on various subjects. Find out more about local extension events by contacting us via (502) 222-9453 or lauren.state@uky.edu. You can visit oldham.ca.uky.edu or facebook.com/OldhamCo to learn more about upcoming events.

loneliness affects your health

Educational programs of the Cooperative Extension Service serve all people regardless of economic or social status and will not discriminate on the basis of race, color, ethnic origin, national origin, creed, religion, political belief, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, gender expressions, pregnancy, marital status, genetic information, age, veteran status, or physical or mental disability.

Written by Amy Hosier, Associate Extension Professor for Family Life Education, and Lauren State Fernandez, Oldham County Extension Staff Assistant.

Celebrate KY Homemakers Week

The following Family & Consumer Sciences article printed in the October 12, 2017 edition of the Oldham Era.

2017 KEHA Week

oldham county homemakers

Celebrate Extension Homemakers during KEHA Week

Kentucky Extension Homemakers Association Week is October 8 through 14, and the state’s more than 850 clubs are celebrating their accomplishments from the past year.

Extension Homemakers are firmly rooted in community service with more than 14,000 members contributing more than 300,000 volunteer hours for Kentucky Cooperative Extension Service-sponsored activities.

olsham county homemakers

KEHA members are huge supporters of higher education and youth. During the 2015-2016 fiscal year, the organization awarded more than $58,000 in college scholarships to deserving students and gave more than $14,000 in 4-H Camp scholarships. Extension Homemakers also volunteered more than 90,000 hours to support youth development activities across the state.

The organization supports several international causes including the Kentucky Academy in Ghana. During the past nine years, Extension Homemakers have helped the academy, which is a kindergarten based in Adjeikrom, Ghana, with various projects. These efforts include building upgrades, new furniture, and a new water well. Most recently, the group has raised money to fund the construction of a library in the village of Adjeikrom.

oldham county homemakers

Outreach efforts extend to local communities too. In the 2015-2016 fiscal year, Oldham County Extension Homemakers volunteered 20,866 hours to our community. Charitable projects included making lap blankets for the VA Hospital, sewing hats for cancer patients and premature babies, donating time and money to local food banks, and making and delivering holiday cards to nursing home residents. Oldham County Extension Homemakers also raise money for ovarian cancer research, Oldham County Community Scholarships, Oldham County 4-H Camp, Coins for Change, and WaterStep.

Joining Extension Homemakers is a great way to get involved with and give back to your community. If you are interested in learning more, contact the Oldham County Extension office via (502) 222-9453.

oldham county homemakers

Educational programs of the Kentucky Cooperative Extension Service serve all people regardless of economic or social status and will not discriminate on the basis of race, color, ethnic origin, national origin, creed, religion, political belief, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, gender expression, pregnancy, marital status, genetic information, age, veteran status, or physical or mental disability.

Written by Kim Henken, Director of Communications and Strategic Partnerships for the School of Human Environmental Sciences, and Lauren State Fernandez, Oldham County Extension Staff Assistant.

Fall 2017 Ag Events

The following Agriculture & Natural Resources calendar printed in the Fall 2017 edition of the quarterly Oldham County Extension newsletter.

oldham county agriculture calendar

All activities are held at the Oldham County Extension office unless otherwise noted. Please call to RSVP for classes held at extension offices.

September Ag Calendar

1 Master Gardener classes begin
4 Office closed for Labor Day
7 Growing Daylilies, sponsored by the Oldham County Master Gardener Association, 6:30 p.m.
8 Oldham County Beekeepers Association, 7:30 p.m.
11 Green Thumbs Garden Club, carpool leaves extension office at 8:30 a.m.
16 Oldham County Master Gardener Association meeting, 9:00 a.m.
16 Indoor Tilapia, Shrimp, & Aquaponics, Kentucky State University, 9:00 a.m. – 3:00 p.m., details/RSVP via kathryn.mitchell@kysu.edu
19 Extension Foundation, 9:00 a.m.
25 Regional Beef Field Day, Todd Rand Farm, Bedford
27-28 Kentucky Grazing School, Versailles, Kentucky

oldham county agriculture calendar

October Ag Calendar

5 Landscaping for All Seasons, Oldham County Arts Center, sponsored by Oldham County Community Education, 6:00 p.m.
9 Green Thumbs Garden Club, contact office for details
12 Extension Council, 9:00 a.m.
12 Extension District Board, 10:00 a.m.
13 Oldham County Beekeepers Association, 7:30 p.m.
17 Kentucky Grazing Conference, Lexington
19 Beef Quality Assurance Training/Certification, 6:00 p.m.
23 Monarchs in Mexico, Creasey Mahan Nature Preserve, sponsored by the Oldham County Master Gardener Association, 6:30 p.m.

oldham county agriculture calendar

November Ag Calendar

9 Beef Quality Assurance Training/Certification, 9:00 a.m.
10 Oldham County Beekeepers Association, 7:30 p.m.
13 Green Thumbs Garden Club, contact office for details
17 Master Gardener Graduation Celebration, 9:00 a.m.
23-24 Office closed for Thanksgiving

2017 Kentucky Wood Expo

ky wood expo

The Kentucky Wood Expo will take place on September 15 and 16 in Lexington at Masterson Station Park. Open to the public, attendees will enjoy a wide variety of activities, demonstrations, and educational events. University of Kentucky Forestry and Natural Resources Extension is partnering with the Kentucky Forest Industries Association (KFIA) to put on several educational programs including: Small Scale Logging Demonstration, Your Backyard Woods, and the ever-popular Critter Tent including a new mammal display with skulls and skins of native Kentucky animals. In addition, Wood Expo attendees will once again have a chance to make and take home their own cutting boards. Other planned activities include live Country and Bluegrass Music, Chainsaw Carving Demonstrations, and a competition between local police and fire departments in forestry related events.

There are also several other contests that the public can participate in and a wide variety of crafts, food, and fun for the entire family. Make sure to come out to the Kentucky Wood Expo to cheer on the UK Forestry student team as they compete in the Collegiate Lumberjack Competition against seven other universities! Mark your calendars now and plan to join us at the 2017 Kentucky Wood Expo! Learn more by visiting here.

Events include:

  • Forestry Equipment Sales & Demonstrations
  • Lumberjack Competitions & Entertainment
  • Chainsaw Carving Demonstration & Auction
  • Crafts
  • Wood Expo Tickets

    General admission to the 2017 Kentucky Wood Expo will be $7.00 at the gate. Advance tickets are available for $5.00. Tickets are $5.00 for kids ages six to twelve. Kids under age six can enter free of charge. Parking is free.

    For further information, contact the KFIA Office via (502) 695-3979 or michele@kfia.org.

    ky wood exposition

    Wood Expo Competitors

    KFIA is looking for chainsaw carvers to participate in the Chainsaw Carving Competition in exchange for submitting a large carving completed during KY Wood Expo hours. Carvers will be provided wood and an outside space for carving during the show. One- to eight-foot white pine log will be supplied for the auction piece. First and second place prize money is available. The winner will be determined by the carving with the highest bid.

    Wood Expo Exhibitors

    Exhibit at the 2017 KY Wood Expo! KFIA is currently taking reservations to exhibit at the 2017 Kentucky Wood Expo, held September 15 and 16 at Masterson Station Park in Lexington, Kentucky. The Kentucky Forest Industries Association, Inc. will accommodate each exhibitor to the best of their ability while ensuring a successful show for all involved.

    For further information, contact the KFIA Office via (502) 695-3979 or michele@kfia.org.

    Summer 2017 FCS Events

    The following Agriculture & Natural Resources calendar printed in the Summer 2017 edition of the quarterly Oldham County Extension newsletter.

    All activities are held at the Oldham County Extension office unless otherwise noted.

    June FCS Calendar

    5 Homemaker Executive Board, 9:30 a.m.
    8 Canning Boot Camp, 6:30 p.m.
    9 Canning Boot Camp, 10:00 a.m.
    13 FCS Council, 10:00 a.m.
    16 Homemakers Club Reports due to Extension Office
    21 Dare to Care Cooking & Nutrition Class, La Grange Community Center, 1:00 p.m.
    30 Homemaker Volunteer Hours due to Extension Office

    July FCS Calendar

    4 Office closed for Independence Day
    10-12 Kids Cooking Camp
    19 Wednesday Quilters, 10:00 a.m. – 2:00 p.m.
    19 Dare to Care Cooking & Nutrition Class, La Grange Community Center, 1:00 p.m.
    24 County Fair Entry Day (Non-Perishables), 1:00 – 7:00 p.m.
    25 County Fair Entry Day (Non-Perishables), 9:00 a.m. – noon
    31 County Fair Entry Day (Culinary), 9:00 a.m. – noon

    August FCS Calendar

    1-5 Oldham County Fair
    6 County Fair Entry Check Out, Oldham County Fairgrounds, noon – 2:00 p.m.
    8 Extension Foundation, 9:00 a.m.
    16 Dare to Care Cooking & Nutrition Class, La Grange Community Center, 1:00 p.m.
    TBA Homemakers Council

    Summer 2017 Ag Events

    The following Agriculture & Natural Resources calendar printed in the Summer 2017 edition of the quarterly Oldham County Extension newsletter.

    All activities are held at the Oldham County Extension office unless otherwise noted. Please call to RSVP for classes held at extension offices.

    June Ag Calendar

    1 Master Cattleman, 6:00 p.m.
    8 County Extension Council, 9:00 a.m.
    8 Extension District Board, 10:00 a.m.
    8 Equine Farm & Facilities Expo, Lexington, University of Kentucky Extension Forages
    9 Oldham County Beekeepers, 7:30 p.m.
    12 Green Thumbs, contact office for details
    15 Master Cattleman, 6:00 p.m.
    20 Ag Development Council, 7:00 p.m.
    24 Master Gardener Association Meeting and Rain Garden Work Day, 9:00 a.m., Oldham County Extension Pavilion

    July Ag Calendar

    4 Office closed for Independence Day
    6 Master Cattleman, 6:00 p.m., Henry County Extension
    6 I Love Roses, 6:30 p.m., Oldham County Public Library, La Grange. Guest speaker Janet Miller of the Louisville Rose Society. Sponsored by Oldham County Master Gardener Association.
    10 Green Thumbs, Contact office for details
    14 Oldham County Beekeepers, 7:30 p.m.
    17 How Flowers Flirt and Flourish, 6:30 p.m., Creasey Mahan Nature Preserve, Goshen. Guest speaker Tavia Cathcart Brown, Wildflower Expert and Author. Sponsored by Oldham County Master Gardener Association.
    18 Oldham County Cattlemen, 6:00 p.m.
    20 Master Cattleman, 6:00 p.m., Shelby County Extension
    31 Ag Exhibits Entry for County Fair, 3:00 p.m. – 7:00 p.m., (NEW LOCATION: Oldham County Extension office)

    August Ag Calendar

    3 Late Summer/Early Fall Gardening, 10:00 a.m. Guest speaker Jeff Wallitsch, Wallitsch Nursery and Garden Center. Sponsored by Oldham County Master Gardener Association.
    3 Master Cattleman, 6:00 p.m.
    8 Extension Foundation, 9:00 a.m.
    10 Rinse & Return for Pesticide Containers, 9:00 a.m. – 12 noon
    11 Oldham County Beekeepers, 7:30 p.m.
    16 Master Gardener/Green Thumbs Outing, Streamcliff Farms

    Summer 2017 4-H Events

    The following 4-H Youth Development calendar printed in the Summer 2017 edition of the quarterly Oldham County Extension newsletter.

    June 4-H Calendar

    2-4 District Horse Show
    5 All 4-H Camp Forms Due
    5 Teen Conference Orientation
    6 Project Day: 2-Point Perspective
    8 Project Day: Leaf Printing
    8 Extension Council & District Board
    9 Project Day: Making An Electromagnet
    12 Robotics Club
    12-15 Teen Conference
    16 Project Day: 4-H Clover Photography
    15-16 State Horse Contest
    20 Camp Leader Orientation
    22 Camper Orientation

    July 4-H Calendar

    2-8 State Horse Show
    4 Office closed for Independence Day
    8 State Communications Day
    10-12 Kids Cooking Camp
    13 4-H Council Meeting
    14 Head Lice Checks for Camp
    17-21 4-H Camp
    27 Fair Project Entry Day

    August 4-H Calendar

    2 4-H Fashion Revue
    1-5 Oldham County Fair
    11 State Fair Projects to Office
    12-13 State Fair Dog Show
    17-27 Kentucky State Fair

    Oldham County Dog Show details to be announced.

    2017 State Homemaker News

    The following Family & Consumer Science article printed in the Summer 2017 edition of the quarterly Oldham County Extension newsletter.

    State Homemaker Meeting News

    Six Oldham County Extension Homemakers attended the 2017 State Annual Meeting in Owensboro: Clarine Anderson, Dottie Crouch, Faye Korthaus, Carol McKinnon, Angela Morris, and Paula Pascal. Oldham County was honored to receive third place in International Fundraiser, Coins for Change.

    state homemakers meeting news

    Carol C. Russ, a new Poplar Grove member, received third place for her short story “My Mother’s Shoes.” Rebecca Starry won two grand champion ribbons in Beading and Jewelry. Pat Honaker received grand champion in Crochet. Kelly Boyd, Linda Kiekhefer, Faye Korthaus, Barb Lynch, Angela Morris, Barbara Lynch, and Peggy Townsend all received blue ribbons for their Cultural Arts entries.

    keha cultural arts

    Save the date! The 2018 KEHA State Annual Meeting will be May 7-9 at the Crowne Plaza Louisville Airport. In addition to competition in the State Cultural Arts contest, the KEHA State meeting is a great time to meet members from all over the state and learn lots of wonderful things.