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Purdue Extension Martin County Blast November 27, 2023



Enjoy the Martin County Blast 11-27-23  


Save the date: Tuesday, February 13, 2024

For ALL youth in grades 7th – 12th grade. 

Registration will open on 4-Honline in December. 


Indiana 4-H Day at the Statehouse allows students in 7th-12th grade learn about their state government through a day full of civic engagement and leadership.

Participants will tour the state house, meet representatives, and have the opportunity to serve as student pages.

For more information about Indiana 4-H Day at the Statehouse, visit:

See more on the 2023 Experience at:


Indiana is receiving close to $870 million for broadband. How much Martin County gets is up to us and our neighbors!


A huge investment is underway to make sure rural and underserved communities have equal access to broadband. Where the money goes will be based on data collected.


We need as many people as possible to submit information about their internet in order for Martin County to get the most funds possible.


You may have completed similar speed tests over the past year or two – but this is the one that will determine where the most need is and where the money will go.


Here’s what to do to make sure your location is counted:

  • If you do not have internet, email you address to (Updated as of 11-1-23) In Martin County, you may call 812-295-2412 and provide your address and we will email the information in for you. 
  • If you do have internet of any kind (excluding cell data):
    1. Visit to submit a speed test
      • Make sure you are connected to your home (or business) internet and not to cellular data.
      • It is important to do this multiple times at different times of the day
    2. Visit, enter your address and look to see which internet providers are listed as available for your address
      • Make sure the “fixed broadband” tab is selected
      • If your address comes up at the wrong spot, click on the dot that is closest to the address pin and verify that it is the correct address. If it is not, click location challenge on the right
      • If your provider availability list is incorrect, click availability challenge on the right


A couple of important notes:

  • If your tested internet speed is less than 100Mbps download and 20Mbps upload (aka 100/20) you are considered underserved
  • If your only internet option is satellite – you are considered
  • If you have dedicated wireless (not cell phone data) that is considered served.
  • This is not for cellular data. However, you can follow step 2 above and select the “mobile broadband” tab to see which services are listed as available for your address.


For step by step instructions with screen shots visit:


IF YOU DO NOT HAVE ACCESS TO INTERNET OR YOUR SPEED IS LESS THAN 100/20, you should also visit and click at the top where it says “click here to register” This will allow you to call special attention to your address. If you don’t know all the questions, that is ok. What is most important is your name, phone number, physical address, email address if you have one, and county. The rest can be left blank if you don’t know the answer.


Financial assistance is available to those within certain income levels. Visit to learn more and apply for assistance.


Purdue Extension staff are here and happy to help, if you need assistance, please call 812-295-2412 or text 812-653-2089.


calling all 4-H members:  become an Indiana Broadband Influencer

Do you want to help bring broadband to every person in Indiana?


Indiana will be receiving $870 million dollars to bring broadband to areas where connectivity is low or non-existent. The FCC will use the map to determine what areas will be prioritized. Our job is to make sure that the map is correct.  


Will you help correct that important map?  If you choose to report your help, you will receive a broadband influencer pin and enter your essay in the contest to win an iPad. 

Go to enter your address and answer the questions. It is a good idea to take a screenshot of your results, especially if you are unserved.


Then verify your address at  If it is incorrect, or if the information about your speed is incorrect, please submit a challenge. If you do need to issue a challenge, it helps to have multiple screenshots of speed tests over time to upload. 


Next, write one paragraph explaining why ensuring that everyone in your community has broadband internet will help your community and make it a better place to live. 


Once you have done these three things, go to 4-H Online and register for the Indiana Broadband Influencer event. You will find instructions attached. Then, just wait for your pin. They will be sent after the first of the year, so make sure you do this early.  



Martin County Extension is accepting applications for youth 8-12 grade to serve on the Martin County Teens as Teachers STEM Team.  This team will present the Power Protectors curriculum to younger students.

How to apply: Express interest via email to or via text 812-653-2089 by answering these five simple questions:

  1. Name
  2. Grade
  3. School attended
  4. Why is STEM important?
  5. Where might the Power Protectors activities be taught at?

Power Protectors is a National STEM curriculum developed by 4-H educators from Cornell University, University of Illinois, Utah State University and West Virginia University and a collection that teaches kids how to address real-world issues and explore careers in energy.  The Power Protectors STEM Challenge kit includes three activities designed for individuals or groups and are adaptable for after-school programs, 4-H clubs, classrooms, home use, and more. The activities are:

  1. Superhero Hideout–  Kids will learn about renewable energy and design an electrifying Power Protector hideout!
  2. Amped Up Engineering– Acting as engineers, kids will design and build a model of a renewable energy source to help Energy Island survive and thrive!
  3. Energy Island Adventure– Playing this collaborative board game, kids work as a SUPER team using solar, wind and hydropower to save endangered Energy Island!


Text 812-653-2089 to reach Purdue Extension Martin County.


All are invited to send a text with your name and in return a full detailed contact card will be texted back for you to save in your device contacts. The contact card will include helpful links will be easy for you to save in your contacts for future use. Then, going forward, you may text as a straight communication option for your Purdue Extension needs!


2024 4-H Scholarships 


4-H Accomplishment Scholarship –Available to 4-H members in grade 10-12 and the year immediately following high school graduation. Selection is based on the member’s life skill development resulting from their 4-H participation. Awards range from $1,000.00-$2,000.00. Categories include Animal Science; Citizenship; Communications; Engineering and Technological Science; Healthy Living, Food, and Nutrition Science; Leadership Development; Plant and Environmental Science; Premier Achievement; Premier Citizenship; and Premier Leadership.


4-H Senior Year Scholarship – All Seniors are eligible to apply.  Available to 4-H members in their senior year of high school. Selection is based on the member’s overall 4-H achievement. Awards range from $250.00-$1,000.00.


4-H Club Scholarship - Available to 4-H members entering Purdue University, as a freshman or transfer student, majoring in the College of Agriculture or select majors, listed on the application, in the College of Health and Human Sciences. Selection is based on the member’s overall 4-H achievement and financial need as determined by Purdue’s Division of Financial Aid.


2024 4-H scholarship applications must be uploaded & submitted through 4-HOnline by January 25, 2024.  If you would like review assistance, provide by January 12, 2024 via email to or schedule appointment. 


4-H Scholarship Questions?  Call or email Dena Held.


For scholarship forms please visit this website: 




  • 4-H Day at the Indiana Statehouse: February 13, 2024.  Open to grades 7-12.
  • 4-H Camp Counselors:  TBA
  • Southern Indiana 4-H Camp: TBA
  • 4-H Academy @ Purdue: June 12 – 14, 2024. Open to grades 9-12.
  • State 4-H Junior Leader Conference: June TBA, 2024. Open to grades 7-12.
  • 4-H Band Workshop: June 22 - 24, 2024 Open to grades 9-12.
  • 4-H Chorus Workshop: June 22 - 25, 2024.  Open to grades 9-12.
  • 4-H Round Up: June 24 – 26, 2024. Open to grades 7-9.



2024 martin county 4-h fair 

July 11-16, 2024



The 167th Great Indiana State Fair will be Friday, August 2nd to Sunday, August 18th, 2024; closed on Mondays.

Forces of Nature 4-H SPARK CLUB


Forces of Nature is a hybrid (both virtual and in-person experiences) Spark Club open to youth in 3rd-12th grades who have an interest in any area of Natural Resources. 


One virtual meeting and one in-person meeting will be held once per month beginning in January and running through April.  Areas explored include Wildlife, Soil and Water, Geology, Weather and Climate, and Forestry.  What makes this fun is the chance to dig a little deeper and get more hands on with topics within these subject areas.  For example, see a restored wetland and many of the birds that call it home or learn how maple syrup is made. 


Registration is open now!


Those who join pay one registration fee of $35 which unlocks access to all experiences.  Members can attend all sessions or pick and choose which ones best fit their interests and schedule.  Registration is at  (Registration requires youth to choose which sessions they wish to attend but will only charge them one time.)














Questions: Contact Christie Jacob,



Applications will be accepted for the 2024 Junior & Senior Boiler Vet Camp until February 1st, 2024. 


The Junior Camp will run from June 2-8 and Senior Camp will run from June 9-15.


The only camp of its kind in Indiana, Boiler Vet Camp gives want-to-be veterinarians or veterinary nurses the chance to live out their dreams. This camp is designed for students who are interested in becoming veterinary healthcare professionals and provides a preview into the real and vast fields of veterinary medicine. Students who attended a previous camp cannot repeat the same camp.


Through presentations, demonstrations, laboratories, visits and in-depth, hands-on activities, students will discover what modern veterinary medicine is all about. Students will gain personal experience of what it is like to attend vet school and what it takes to become a veterinarian or veterinary nurse through this seven day on-campus experience at one of the premier veterinary schools in the country. Students entering 8th and 9th grades are eligible to attend Junior Camp and students entering the 10th, 11th, or 12th grades are eligible to attend the Senior Camp. The minimum age required to attend Vet Camp is 12 years of age.


Many partnering organizations have joined with the College of Veterinary Medicine to provide financial assistance for both camps. Partial scholarships are available. Camp fees are all-inclusive for the hands-on in-residence camps.


Learn more and apply now at



ServSafe Manager Certification is an approved training in the state of Indiana to become a certified food protection manager.

ServSafe Food Handler is for anyone else who needs basic food safety and food handling training, including home-based vendors, food service workers, volunteers, or others who work with food who only need the basic training. This course is NOT intended for food service managers.

Here are upcoming classes scheduled in our area. For more information including registration links visit or


ServSafe Manager Class June 7, 2024 in Washington, Contact Jennifer 812-254-8668



ServSafe Food Handler Class, March 12, 2024 in Vincennes, register at





You can’t take care of your farm, your livestock or your family if you don’t first take care of yourself.


The Purdue Farm Stress team is part of a 12-state collaborative effort that was awarded the Farm and Ranch Stress Assistance Network grant administered by the USDA National Institute of Food and Agriculture.  The goal is to create/expand stress management and mental health resources and services to agricultural producers/stakeholders in the North Central region.  Listen to the podcast!  Tools For Today’s Farmer.   Featuring interviews with leaders in the agriculture industry.  Find it anywhere you listen to podcasts or simply google search “Tools for Today’s Farmer Podcast.” 


Resources for Farm Families:

Need help and don’t know where to start:

Call:  211 OR

988 Suicide & Crisis Lifeline

Call: 988 OR

Be Well Indiana

Call: 211 OR 1-866-211-9966 OR https//


Concern Line for Farmers (Hosted by Iowa)

Call:  1-800-477-1985

Farm Aide Hotline

Call:  1-800-327-6243

Strong Couples Project (Partnership with IL)



Check the website for more resources and information:



February 28, 2024

Beck Agricultural Center, West Lafayette,  IN

The Indiana Organic Grain Farmer meeting increases participant understanding of organic transition, certification and cropping systems through peer learning and networking.  This annual event includes education and workshops on transitioning to organic grain, breakout sessions, farmer panels, networking time and an industry trade show.

For more information contact:  Ashley Adair - Extension Organic Agriculture Specialist  Email:


2024 Indiana Small Farm Conference

WHEN:  Thursday, February 29, 2024 – March 1, 2024

WHERE:  Hendricks County Fairgrounds, Danville,  Indiana

The Indiana Small Farm Conference is a unique space to learn new techniques, see what works, and network with others.  Over 400 attendees, 40 + exhibitors and a vendor trade show along with several national speakers.

To learn more about the conference and the work that the Purdue team does to make your small farming program work.  Contact Information: Amy Thompson,

If you are interested in being a show vendor, contact:  Phil Cox at




This is a four-week course offered virtually November 28, December 5, 12, and 19 from 10:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m. EST. This is a discussion-based workshop to connect women and subject-matter experts in the areas of financial records and interpreting results.  Participants should plan on attending each of the four workshop dates. The course requires participants to have an internet connection.  Women will find many opportunities for questions, sharing, and connecting with the presenters and other participants.  Upon completion of this program, participants will have a better understanding of how financial records can be used to make decisions.

Session highlights:
Week 1 - Balance sheet construction and interpretation
Week 2 – Cash flow and income statement fundamentals
Week 3 – Ratios, lease evaluations and negotiations
Week 4 - Know Your Numbers Know Your Options

Registration is $20 per participant and class size is limited to 20.

Register by November 22 at: .

Class material is based upon work supported by USDA/NIFA under Award Number 2020-70028-32728 (Cooperating with University of Nebraska Extension). For more information, or if you need a reasonable accommodation to participate in this program, please contact Mathias Ingle  or 765-456-2313 by November 22, 2023.



A virtual, muilt-session program for the beef cattle industry. Topics include overview of beef cattle, behavior & facilities, health, genetic selction, forages, nutrition & reproduction.

Dates & Times: February 6 until March 26, 2024

Tuesdays, 6 pm – 8:30 pm EST & Thursdays from 7 pm to 8 pm EST. 

Registration Deadline: by January 24, 2024

Cost: $50

Register Today:

For any questions, please email or



SAVE THE DATE! June 11-13, 2024

Developing Urban Food Systems for Sustainable and Resiliant Communities

Event Location: Hyatt Regency Downtown Columbus, OH



Hypersonics is a critical research area for our country. By creating a video, you have the opportunity to join this community, help solve hypersonics challenges, and possibly inspire someone else!

Hypersonic systems have the potential to revolutionize travel within our atmosphere and to worlds beyond ours.
The technologies required to travel around the world at very fast speeds span many disciplines-- from chemistry and physics, to computer science and mathematics! Many technologies, while seemingly sound and practical, require evaluation prior to being seriously considered for use in hypersonic systems. A system is only as good as its weakest link and the hypersonic flight environment breaks many chains. To tackle these challenges, we need creative science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) minded folks (like you) to join the hypersonics community!

Supersonic and hypersonic aircrafts will allow people to reach their destinations in a fraction of the time. In the 1970s, the first supersonic passenger plane came on the market, but cost and other issues caused the planes to be retired from use. If hypersonics research and development was able to create a hypersonic passenger aircraft that was both technologically and economically feasible, it could drastically change the way we travel!

We need your help! Create a video, between three and five minutes in length, that helps us answer the questions below based on your year in school. Videos should demonstrate a knowledge of hypersonics, creative thinking, and problem solving how hypersonics will change travel.

  • High School Students
    • Hypersonic travel would bring about a new style of aircraft. How would a hypersonic passenger plane compare to the current, subsonic airplane? How would we need to rethink airports to accommodate hypersonics aircrafts? How do you think the passenger experience would change at hypersonic speeds? Create a three to five minute video that shares your answers to the above questions.
  • College/University Undergraduate Students
    • Hypersonic travel would revolutionize international travel, with flight times measured in a few hours versus 12+ hour flights. What is a possible benefit of further developing hypersonic travel? What is a physics or engineering problem that needs to be overcome in order to make hypersonic travel a reality? How would you solve this problem? Create a three to five minute video that shares your answers to the above questions.

Individual students or teams, of up to three students, should create a video for the Challenge appropriate for their academic enrollment. Videos should be three to five minutes in length and less than 1GB in size. All videos and associated information are due by 11:59 pm EST on Wednesday, January 17, 2024. Please visit to submit your video and fill out a form with the name, email, academic affiliation, and year for each member of the team. Video submissions must be in a format compatible with YouTube such as .MOV, .MPD, .AVI, .WMV, etc. The video must include title and date, an answer to your prompt, a list of references used, names of all participants and their school, and any relevant credits.


Adapted from:

by Michael Langemeier


Average fed cattle prices increased from an average price of $161 in the first quarter of 2023 to $180 in the third quarter, or 12 percent. Moreover, feeding cost of gain had declined from its peak earlier this year. These two phenomena represent the good news. Now for the not so good news. Feeder steer prices have increased substantially from their levels earlier this year. Obviously, net returns to cattle finishing depend on fed cattle prices, feeder cattle prices, and feeding cost of gain. An earlier article examined trends in feeding cost of gain (Langemeier, 2023). This article will focus on recent trends in feeder prices and breakeven prices, and provide projections for the next few months.

Historical Breakeven Prices

Breakeven prices are sensitive to changes in feeding cost of gain, feeder prices, and interest rates. Monthly issues of the Focus on Feedlots newsletter were used to obtain information on feeding cost of gain. Historical and projected feeder prices were obtained from the Livestock Marketing Information (LMIC) web site. Interest rates were obtained from the Federal Reserve Bank of Kansas City.

Figure 1 (found at weblink) illustrates breakeven prices from January 2013 to September 2023 as well as projections for 2024. In this section we will focus on historical breakeven prices. In the next section will discuss our projections. As evident from figure 1, breakeven prices have been increasing rapidly since the fourth quarter of 2022. After averaging approximately $155 per cwt. in the fourth quarter of 2022, breakeven prices averaged approximately $168.40 per cwt. in the first quarter of 2023 and $167.40 per cwt. in the second quarter. Average breakeven price for the third quarter of this year was approximately $174.20.

Though not a focus of this article, net return can be determined using the difference between fed cattle price and breakeven price in figure 1. Since April of this year fed cattle price has been higher than breakeven price with the widest gaps (i.e., largest net returns) occurring in June and July. Whether this relationship between fed cattle price and breakeven price continues will be discussed below.

Projected Breakeven Prices

Breakeven prices are expected to average approximately $186 per cwt. in the fourth quarter of 2023, with the highest breakeven price, $196 per cwt., occurring in December. What about the gap between fed cattle and breakeven prices? The gap is projected to be positive in October and November, and then become negative as we move into December.

For the first one-half of 2024, breakeven prices are expected to range from $193 to $197 per cwt. Will these breakeven prices lead to cattle finishing losses? They very well could. However, given the relatively tight beef supplies, the potential monthly gaps between fed cattle and breakeven prices, or net returns, are very difficult to project.

Summary And Conclusions

Fed cattle prices have strengthened the last few months. At the same time, due to lower corn prices, feeding cost of gain has also declined. Partially in response to these two phenomena, feeder prices and breakeven prices have increased substantially. Breakeven prices for the fourth quarter of this year are expected to be $10 per cwt. higher than those for the third quarter. Moreover, breakeven prices in early 2024 are expected to be $10 per cwt. higher than the projected breakeven prices for the fourth quarter of this year. These large increases in breakeven prices increase the uncertainty related to net return prospects for the next few months.

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