Pumpkin crop looking good in time for Halloween and Thanksgiving

URBANA — This time last year, the threat of a major pumpkin shortfall was in the news. Sources were predicting the 50 percent yield losses — due to early rains, cooler-than-normal weather and fast-spreading disease — would mean fewer pumpkin pies at Thanksgiving.

Results from local initiative could have worldwide use

RANTOUL — Using an ordinary cargo trailer, Roman Fox and crew were able to convert it to a cooling station — a place to keep fruits and vegetables at ideal temperatures during transport to and from farmers markets or after they’re harvested in farm fields.

J.I. Case, Graham-Bradley to be featured at farm show

PENFIELD — Before the Case farm equipment company bought International Harvester, it had its own line — J.I. Case.

The farm machinery line will be featured at this year’s Historic Farm Days show, which runs Thursday through Sunday in Penfield.

What's a few thousand miles?

PENFIELD — John Fredrickson, former president of the I&I Antique Tractor and Gas Engine Club, said there are some people in the Penfield area who have never visited the annual Historic Farm Days show in that town.

Woman's work saved calves' lives

RANTOUL — For Jan Allen, last week’s highway accident that put nearly 100 feeder calves in jeopardy was nothing new.

It was the fourth mishap involving animals in the last year that Rantoul Foods’ livestock-procurement manager responded to.

“Just like any other emergency, if it had been a bus, you look around, check to see if the driver is OK, and any passengers,” Allen said.

Wearing the blue: FFA students receive star awards; greenhands recognized

RANTOUL — Rantoul Township High School FFA members were recognized for their accomplishments during the 2015-16 school year when the chapter hosted its annual banquet May 4.

Students who received star awards were Adam Crites, star greenhand; Chase Carlson, star in agribusiness; Nicole Wolken and Karsin Harper, stars in agriscience research; and Raina Goodrum, star farmer.

Seven generations and counting: Keslers longtime area farmers

DEWEY—Jacob Kesler had career options, but when it came down to it, his best option was the one he had been around his entire life.

By his estimation, his family has been farming in the central and northern parts of Champaign County for at least seven generations, with Jacob being the seventh generation.

Time for a bad crop season? Maybe so, says Good

DEWEY — After three quality growing seasons, don’t be surprised if conditions are less than ideal in 2016.

Dr. Darrel Good, professor emeritus in the University of Illinois Department of Agriculture and Consumer Economics, isn’t a meteorologist, but he said many signs point to less-than-ideal weather this year for growing corn and soybeans.

Large farm auction set for Rantoul

RANTOUL — An auction has been set for later this month to sell a vast array of farm equipment and vehicles owned by the Lo family.

The Los are retiring from farming, according to the Hamilton-based auction house, Sullivan Auctioneers.

Thomasboro farm group harvests corn for low-income families

CHAMPAIGN — While its students may never attend high school on the 80 acres of land the Champaign school district owns in the northernmost part of Champaign, some low-income families in the district may be fed this fall thanks to the proceeds from 40 acres of crops that were harvested on a portion of that land recently.   

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