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Beyond The Farm: A Look At The Wide World Of Ag Degrees

Fields, crops and farm animals are part of the agriculture-industry landscape, but an increasingly small one. The number of farm and ranch managers shrunk by about 20 percent between 1996 and 2016, according to the Bureau of Labor statistics . At the same time, there are more students graduating from ag colleges, and, in many parts of the country, 80 percent to 90 percent of them find a job (or go for an advanced degree) within a few months of graduating.

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Macomb, IL – Rain did not stop more than 200 people from showing up for this year's "Relay for Life" at WIU. The event is usually held at Hanson Field, but was moved into the Student Recreation Center because of the weather. Cancer Survivor Kathy Little of Macomb was pleased with the number of college students who showed up to support the fight for a cure. She helped kick off the event by participating in the first lap of the relay, which is set aside for those who have survived cancer. The event raised more than $37,000 which will be given to the American Cancer Society for research.

Keokuk, IA – Lee County will sell six properties in Keokuk and Fort Madison. A public auction will be June 16 at 5:30 p.m. in the South Lee County Courthouse in Keokuk. The county acquired the six lots because property taxes were not being paid on them. The last time the county held an auction like this was in 2003. The Board of Supervisors will hold a public hearing June 7 in preparation for the auction.

Keokuk, IA – Keokuk is hosting the 18th annual Battle of Pea Ridge Civil War Re-enactment this weekend. The battles are scheduled for Saturday afternoon at 3 and Sunday afternoon at 2:30. Other events include a dessert social, a medical camp demonstration, the Military Ball, breakfst with the troops and the re-dedication of the civil war memorial in Hamilton. The campsites will open to the public Saturday morning at 8.

Keokuk, IA – Keokuk is hosting the 18th annual Battle of Pea Ridge Civil War Re-enactment this weekend. The battles are scheduled for Saturday afternoon at 3 and Sunday afternoon at 2:30. Other events include a dessert social, a medical camp demonstration, the Military Ball, breakfst with the troops and the re-dedication of the civil war memorial in Hamilton. The campsites will open to the public Saturday morning at 8.

Macomb, IL – McDonough County Board Chairman Bob Harwick says more than $120,000 from the county's economic development fund went toward helping lure the Pella Corporation plant to Macomb. He says it's now time to rebuild the money with the county's $36,000 yearly in tax money that's devoted to economic development. Harwick says even more of the county money went toward purchase and remodeling of the former Porcelain Products plant that's now the Business and Technology Center for the region.

Macomb, IL – The next step has been taken to build a new factory in Macomb. A groundbreaking ceremony was held Wednesday morning for the Pella Corporation plant. The factory will be built on Macomb's far east side, near the future location of the Route 336 bypass. A number of Pella representatives were on hand for the ceremony. They were joined by local leaders. Pella says the plant will begin production early next year. The company says the facility will initially employ about 250 people. Eventually up to 500 people could work there.

Macomb, IL – Those in favor of moving property from the Industry School District to the Macomb district made their case to the Regional Board of School Trustees this week. But because the hearing went on so long, it was continued until May 4, when opponents will argue their side of the issue. Supporters say Macomb is their "Community of Interest." They also believe opportunities for their children are better there. Opponents of the detachment will include the Industry and Schuyler County school districts, who believe they can't afford the loss of assessed value or students.

Macomb, IL – The Creative Elder Options committee of the Macomb Area AARP will host its third "Adding More Home to the Nursing Home Experience" seminar next week. One of the presenters will be Eric Haider, who's gained national recognition for his efforts to improve the nursing home experience. The luncheon speaker will be Kathy Kopsack, who is a regional long-term care ombudsman with Alternatives for Older Adults. Kopsack was the first administrator for The Elms when it moved to Macomb. More about the seminar can be heard on "Emphasis" at noon Thursday on Tri States Public Radio.

Keokuk, IA – The candlelight vigil was organized by the Tri-State Coalition Against Domestic and Sexual Abuse. It was held in observance of Sexual Abuse Awareness Month. Coalition Director Sue Prochazka hopes the vigil raised awareness. Several of the speakers said more funding is needed for service providers. They would also like to see tougher laws to protect the victims of sexual abuse. This is the seventh year the coalition has held such a vigil. Prochazka says her group will continue to speak to schools and agencies throughout the remainder of the month.

West Burlington, IA – The proposal to revive the Grow Iowa Values Fund has been referred to a House committee for more work. This is the fourth time it's been sent to committee, and the full House has yet to take a vote on it. During a stop in West Burlington, Iowa Economic Development Director Mike Blouin said the program is needed. Blouin said before the previous program was ruled unconstitutional by the Iowa Supreme Court, it led to the creation or expansion of more than 200 companies and generated more than $2.5 billion in capital investment.

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Folk Weekend Live in Concert

Bigfoot Yancey, 7:00pm March 2, 2019 Vallillo/Holtz Performance Studio

Bigfoot Yancey is an Indianapolis-based band that has developed a sound that draws upon inspiration from various genres but always rooted in Americana and the blue collar sound that has defined many parts of this country for decades. In an era where more and more musicians are relying upon technology, Bigfoot Yancey strives to keep their music as raw and stripped down as possible. This allows the listener to fully engage with the music in a very real sense. Their live performances echo this...

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TSPR Holiday Programs

NPR Student Podcast Challenge

Enter the NPR Student Podcast Challenge

Hey students, have something to say? Now is your chance. Be a part of the first-ever NPR Student Podcast Challenge.

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Thank you for nominating your favorite charities on Giving Tuesday.

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Harvest Public Media

U.S. REP. ROGER MARSHALL'S OFFICE

Held up over disagreements over federal food stamps, the first draft of the 2018 farm bill arrived Thursday, bearing 35 changes to that program, including starting a national database of participants.

Amy Mayer/Harvest Public Media

As agriculture intensified in the 20th century, summers in the Midwest became wetter and cooler.  An MIT study published this month looked at whether vegetation from crop production, rather than greenhouse gas emissions that are an established source of climate changes, could have driven these regional impacts.

Ben Kuebrich/Kansas News Service/Harvest Public Media

A new, widely debated federal mandate requires truckers to electronically track the number of hours they're on the road — a rule that is meant to make highways safer. But there is a big difference between hauling a load of TVs and a load of cattle destined for meatpacking plants.

DARRELL HOEMANN / FILE/MIDWEST CENTER FOR INVESTIGATIVE REPORTING

Lawsuits filed in Illinois, Missouri, Kansas, and Arkansas against the makers of the herbicide dicamba will be centralized in the federal court in St. Louis.

Amy Mayer/Harvest Public Media

In the coming months, Congress will map out how it will spend upwards of $500 billion on food and farm programs over the next five years.  The massive piece of legislation known as the farm bill affects all taxpayers -- whether they know it or not.

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TSPR wins a Regional Murrow Award

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