The University of Missouri Extension gave its quarterly report to the St. Francois County Commission recently.
Stephanie Schindler, county engagement specialist in 4-H youth development, spoke.
“We are now allowed to be in groups larger than 20,” she said. “On March 1, the university came out with new regulations. Now, the magic number is 50, we are able to do day camps and go to 4-H club meetings again. It’s a great chance to get back out into the community. Virtual is great, but there’s nothing like being in-person.”
Schindler reported on the activities of Nutrition Program Associate Alyssa Bowyer. Bowyer does nutrition programming throughout the county. Bowyer works with some of the school districts in St. Francois County and the Bloomsdale Elementary School.
“The schools have been very welcoming to her,” said Schindler. “She has a lot of contacts and is starting a new session of classes this week or next.”
In her report, Bowyer noted, “during my last session with a third grade class in St. Francois County, the teacher told me that she had seen big changes in multiple students’ snacks … the teacher stated, ‘You have made a big impact on my class.’ That is a big success, getting kids to eat healthier, to choose those healthy snacks on their own.”
In the 4-H report, Schindler stated that 4-H Feeding Missouri is a four-month long food drive for the whole state.
“We have been collecting food in each county,” she said. “In St. Francois County, we have had clubs do collection. Farmington Farmers collected almost 300 pounds of food in one month. Our goal is 500,000 pounds of food for Missouri donated by 4-H.”
The 4-H SNAC Program is an eight-week program that combines nutrition with physical activity, leadership and citizenship. Schindler said it was targeted to the fourth grade and older youths and has three programs: Kids in the Kitchen, Eating from the Garden and Soccer for Success.
According to Schindler, the St. Francois County Fair will be held on June 24-26. Swine nominations have already been conducted.
Youth Program Associate Kayce Amsden has started a virtual statewide coding 4-H Club that is open to all youth. The club will begin this month with about 10 kids enrolled.
Kendra Graham is the livestock specialist and covers 19-20 counties. Schindler reported that Graham is currently working on data management for the Show-Me Select Heifer Program.
Schindler also stated that Pearls of Production, a Women in Agriculture conference, is planned to be held in person Nov. 5-6.
In other commission business, Clay Copeland, road and bridge superintendent, presented bids to the commission for bridge beams for a bridge replacement on Busiek Road.
“We did seek two quotes, one from McCann Concrete and one from County Materials,” he said.
The county agreed to purchase the six, 36 foot long by 4 foot wide beams for a total price of $47,552.40 from County Materials.
Jared Faulkner, IT director, asked permission to request bids for 50 new computers for the county.
“We can keep that three-year cycle going of getting all the old computers out and replaced with new ones,” he said. “We replace 50 every year. It will go roughly around three departments. We might not use all 50, we will have spares in case someone in another department has a computer go out; we can replace it right then.”
The next regular meeting will be Tuesday at 10 a.m. on the third floor of the courthouse annex.
Mark Marberry is a reporter for the Farmington Press and Daily Journal. He can be reached at 573-518-3629, or at firstname.lastname@example.org