Weekly Bits – April 17

YOUTH ENGAGEMENT – Laura Liechty

Twenty-one youth from Allamakee, Clayton and Winneshiek counties competed in the NE Iowa 4-H Cook This! Challenge last weekend. The teams were tested on their cooking skills, like guacamole preparation (above), nutrition knowledge, and communication skills. Congratulations to the teams from Waukon, Monona and Clayton Ridge!

FOOD SYSTEMS – Teresa Wiemerslage

There will be a new farmers market coupon at the Winneshiek Farmers Market this year. The First Lutheran Food Pantry received a grant from the Winneshiek County Community Foundation to give coupons to their clients for fresh fruits and vegetables at the market. The grant was seed money for the “Farmers Market Fund” at the food pantry. Community members and organizations are invited to contribute to the fund.

A similar coupon program is offered at the Waukon, Riceville and New Hampton farmers markets. Donations for those program are accepted through the Iowa Food Hub, a 501c3 partner.
EARLY CHILDHOOD – Haleisa Johnson

Cooking as a family provides teachable moments. Kids, especially little ones, want to feel like they are contributing to the family.
ACTIVE LIVING – Ashley Christensen

The Healthiest State Blog recently featured NE Iowa FFI Safe Routes to School program as a success story for healthy communities.
SCHOOL WELLNESS – FoodCorps and AmeriCorps Service members

When Goats go to School. During library time in March, Howard-Winneshiek Community School District students read the story “The Billy Goats Gruff.” Meanwhile, some of the older kids have even practiced constructing different types of bridge designs in class to coincide with the storyline. Then, the Des Moines Metro Opera’s Iowa Tour Troupe also visited Howard-Winn to present their operatic version of the classic children’s story. Teacher Todd Knobloch decided to bring in a couple of his own real-life goats so the kids could actually see what they look like. “When the kids first started [reading] ‘The Billy Goats Gruff’ some of them had never even heard of the story before,” he said, noting that this is the goats’ first adventure away from the farm. Science + Reading + Agriculture + Arts = FUN!
TIP OF THE WEEK:

The weather is starting to warm up, it’s time to start planning what you are planting in your garden and time to get your canners ready to preserve your garden bounty!  Making sure that your canning equipment is in proper working order is required for safe, high quality home canning.

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