February 9, 2006

Missouri Farm Numbers Decline Slightly in 2005

(COLUMBIA, MO) - Missouri farm numbers, estimated at 105,000, are down slightly from last year, said Gene Danekas, Director of the USDA-Missouri Agricultural Statistics Service. The complexion of Missouri agriculture has and continues to change, while life economic conditions and lifestyle choices are the major contributors to the decline.

A farm is defined as any establishment from which $1,000 or more of agricultural products were sold or would be sold during the year. Missouri ranks second in total number of farms, following Texas. Total land in Missouri farms is estimated at 30.1 million acres with an average farm size of 287 acres.

Missouri farms in the economic sales class of $1,000 to $9,999 are estimated at 57,900, down 2 percent from a year earlier. Farms in the sales group of $10,000 to $99,999 totaled 36,100, down slightly from 2004. The $100,000 to $249,000 group is estimated at 6,400, up 200 farms from last year. Farms in the sales groups of $250,000 to $499,000 totaled 2,700, up slightly from 2004, while farm with sales of $500,000 and over totaled 1,900, up from 1,800 in 2004.

Number of Farms and Land in Farms 2005 Summary

The number of farms in the United States in 2005 is estimated at 2.1 million, 0.6 percent fewer than in 2004. Total land in farms, at 933.4 million acres, decreased 2.9 million acres, or 0.3 percent, from 2004.

The average farm size was 444 acres during 2005, an increase of one acre from the previous year. The decline in the number of farms and land in farms reflects a continuing consolidation in farming operations and diversion of agricultural land to nonagricultural uses.

Farm numbers and land in farms are broken down into five economic sales classes. Farms and ranches are classified into these sales classes by summing their sales of agricultural products and government program payments. Sales class breaks occur at $10,000, $100,000, $250,000, and $500,000.

Farm numbers declined in the three smallest sales classes and rose in the two largest sales classes. Part of the decline in the smaller sales classes was due to normal attrition, such as retirements. In addition, some operations transferred to larger sales classes by enterprise expansion. However, the majority of the changes in the sales classes were likely due to rising incomes. Many farms and ranches near the top of their sales class in 2004 moved into the next higher sales class in 2005 without adding land or otherwise expanding their operations.

The largest percentage changes from 2004 occurred in the smallest and largest sales classes. Farm numbers declined 1.1 percent, to 1.17 million farms, in the $1,000 - $9,999 sales class. Meanwhile, farm numbers increased 3.8 percent, to 79,410 farms, in the $500,000 or more sales class. The number of farms with less than $250,000 in sales fell 0.8 percent from 2004 and the number of farms with $250,000 or more in sales rose 2.4 percent.

Land in farms also shifted from lower sales classes to higher sales classes. In the $1,000-$9,999 sales class, land in farms dropped 2.1 percent, to 118.4 million acres, while land operated by farms in the largest sales class, $500,000 or more in sales, increased 3.0 percent, to 209.9 million acres. Farms with under $250,000 in sales operated 571.3 million acres, or 1.7 percent fewer acres than 2004. Farmers in the two largest sales classes, representing operations with sales of $250,000 or more, operated 362.2 million acres, up 2.0 percent from 2004.

Over all, the average farm size increased in 2005. However, average farm sizes declined in the sales classes due to smaller farms moving up to higher sales classes.

Downing City Board Discusses Smoke Testing Sewer System During September Meeting

The Board of the City of Downing convened at 6:00 p.m. on September 10, 2018 with Mayor Alan Garrett presiding. Present were Aldermen Ray Bange, Bill Anderson, Gene Bruner, and Hannah Poe. City Clerk Carol Dryden and Water/Waste Water Operator John Petary.

Copies of the agenda, minutes of the last meeting, deposits & disbursements, monthly water report, and account balances were given to all present.

Mayor Alan Garrett called the meeting to order.

A motion to approve the agenda was made by Gene Bruner and seconded by Ray Bange and carried unanimously.

A motion to approve the minutes of the last meeting was made by Bill Anderson and seconded by Gene Bruner and carried unanimously.

A motion to approve the bills was made by Ray Bange and seconded by Bill Anderson and carried unanimously.

Tracey Gooden with Hawkins Harrison Insurance Group was here to go over our renewal policies. We made some changes and then Ray Bange made a motion to approve the policies, seconded by Hannah Poe and carried unanimously.

John Gillum came to go over our 2016 and 2017 Audits. He spent the time to explain each one of them to us.

Water/Waste Water Report: Water system is doing well. We do need to flush the lines so he will get to that soon. The lagoon is about ready to open up again so John will have more tasks to perform on that. We are getting a lot of rain water in the lagoon so will be looking into getting a smoke test done.

Street Maintenance: After all the rain we had, the roads are again in need of some work. John will be getting on them as soon as he can. He also has a lot of mowing to do after the rain.

Old and Unfinished Business: MECO is about done with our PER and will be contacting us soon with the results. Still trying to get information from Advanced Disposal on trash pickup.

New Business: We need to widen the ramp coming in the door as people are stepping off the side and the front door is rusting out at the bottom. Will get some estimates on getting these things done.

Positive Thoughts: It rained and a lot of the ponds are looking better.

A motion to adjourn the meeting at 7:30 p.m. was made by Bill Anderson and seconded by Ray Bange and carried unanimously.

Submitted by City Clerk Carol Dryden

Fast Times

As we always say times is going way too fast. As many of you read this, it will be September 12, with the month being on the way to being half over. I know many of you are still enjoying those hummingbirds at the feeders.  I know I am.  I had one person ask about the honeybees near or on the feeders. He glued tiny washers around the feeding holes and this stopped the bees. I have also heard about spraying cooking spray on the feeder as well.  I have not had any trouble with ants this year, after I used the Terro kits to put outside.  Completely ridded the whole perimeter of my house of ants.

The Ruby-throated male arrives in the spring before the female, and the female follows a few weeks later.  In fall, the males depart first to make the return trip south ahead of the females.  In the mornings, the males patrol their territories by flying around the perimeter and vocalizing.

Rubythroats have a very long migration period.  In the Northeast, spring migration extends from mid-April through early June and autumn migration can begin as early July and last through late September some extending until as late as November.  Here in the Midwest, the general rule for the hummingbirds are May 1 to start arriving, and October 1 to begin to leave for the winter.  They can begin to migrate by the middle of July. The birds you see in your backyard by the end of August are almost certainly not the same ones that have been around earlier in the summer.

I usually take my feeders down by October 1 as you don’t want them to over extend their fall stay.  They will migrate during the day, although they may also fly during the night when they are crossing the Gulf of Mexico. By late August or early September, almost all the adult males are gone from the northern and central parts of their breeding territory.  Females and young will continue to migrate for another month or so.  They can fly hundreds of miles non-stop over the Gulf of Mexico.

I hope you are enjoying the fall and the hungry hummingbirds. Until next time, good bird watching.

Seven Plump Piglets and Bioluminescent Fungi

September rolled in quietly last week while my attention was elsewhere. Now I find myself halfway through the remaining few weeks of summer, finally enjoying as many tomatoes and dropping peaches as I care to eat. I’m appreciating these cooler days and nights, as well, even though they portend the waning of the season when such delights will eventually come to an end for the year. Ted here, to bring you the latest from Dancing Rabbit Ecovillage.

This week bridged one big event and another; from the Singing Rabbit event we hosted here on Labor Day weekend to our annual Open House this past weekend. It was an entire week of weather that either threatened or produced significant amounts of rain, certainly in comparison to our extremely parched summer.

With the return of moisture to the land, the fungi have awoken here in NEMO. My friend Alyson reported (and delivered a specimen of) two different bioluminescent fungi observed growing along the path in the woods she traverses regularly between Dancing Rabbit Ecovillage and the adjoining Red Earth Farms. Some internet research turned up no mention whatsoever of any such beings living in our area. New sighting? They are certainly fun to look at in the dark!

DR work exchanger Charlotte came in from a walk Saturday morning before Open House with a beautiful array of a dozen or so species of fungi she’d seen while walking on the land here. Some edible, some not; all beautiful. I haven’t had time to go out searching at length myself, but there have been plenty to see all around the homestead on my daily rounds.

Homeschool began again last week (after Labor Day, which was the norm when I was a kid). I’ve taken on teaching geography with a sideline in current events to Aurelia and Emma this year. I’m just getting into the swing of it and having fun, so far, with climate patterns, biomes, nutrient cycles, and all sorts of other interesting things.

Christina, last week, mentioned the songs running in her head as a result of the singing event we hosted and I can definitely attest to a similar impact. For days, I’ve had songs steadily burbling up in my mind while at work on other things. Whole songs in languages I don’t speak (including two out of three of those Georgian and Balkan tunes Christina mentioned last week) took over my brain space for hours at a time, assembling into some reasonably coherent, mental recordings. One afternoon, I heard Darien on his accordion picking out the tune and chord changes of a song that was also stuck on intermittent repeat in my head. It was fun to realize I was not alone with the background music.

If each of us who attended can bring at least one new melody into our regular song circle, our expanded repertoire will grow even richer. I don’t love repetition, so that suits me well.

The mid-week rain ran in torrents through our neck of the woods, the underlying soil so long dried out that it couldn’t absorb much at first. Tuesday afternoon, there was a steady stream flowing down to and through the door of our shed. I tried hastily to reestablish and encourage some of the drainage features we’ve installed previously. The hydraulic engineering work of tunneling moles also made itself known, where a rivulet would disappear into one hole and re-emerge as a fountain from another 15 feet downhill.

With the approach of Open House and no break in the weather expected, I began to fret that our paths would be impassable for tours come the weekend, but our path maintenance manager Kyle managed to conjure a couple good piles of chip-mulch mid-week to cover and repair some of the essential village paths, despite the wet weather, and a handful of us helped disperse it just in time.

Saturday’s weather turned up grey but merely damp, fair enough that a stream of 50-plus folks came to tour the village in the afternoon. Receiving tours at Ironweed kitchen to talk about alternative energy for a few minutes, I marveled as I do each year at the variety of wonderful people and interests we meet and learn about at this event. Thanks to all who came out to visit! And, well met.

Speaking of well met; Friday morning, as we were finishing breakfast, Althea came charging up to the screen door to share that “Lexie had seven plump piglets!” Aurelia disappeared with her to go meet the new critters and didn’t turn up again for a couple hours. I went down to meet them the other day, and they are indeed, extremely cute, little bundles of soft fur with scrunched snouts. Sadie is due soon, too, so the barn will soon be o’er run with wee four-leggeds.

Sunday, at our Village Council meeting, we discussed the findings of the ad-hoc, alternative-fuels, research group for our vehicle co-op. One of our six covenants specifies that we will not use fossil fuels for transportation, and for many years, we have bought diesel vehicles and run them on biodiesel for as much of the year as we could. Winter-cold makes biodiesel gel, however, and so we have regularly had to blend in petrodiesel for the cold months. Changes in diesel engines also mean that to run 100% biodiesel requires vehicles produced before 2007, and vehicles do wear out.

Newer vehicle tech, especially hybrid electrics, have lower lifetime and operational emissions than conventional cars, especially when they can be charged on green power such as we produce for ourselves at Dancing Rabbit. We do not change our ecological covenants lightly but are now considering what the most potent fuel covenant could be, while still matching the reality of our experience. Our research has shown that our vehicle-sharing and ride-sharing efforts have the biggest impact in reducing our individual and collective carbon footprints. Humans’ reliance on fossil fuels is one of the most central issues of our times, so we want to get this right, and continue to ratchet down our impact.

Even if you decided not to come out for our Open House in the wet weather, it isn’t too late to stop by for a public tour this year. We are still offering public tours at 1pm on second and fourth Saturdays through October, so please do come out and enjoy the onset of autumn here in the village.

Here’s hoping your upcoming harvests are bountiful, with sun and rain each in good measure. Thanks for keeping up with the news from our village and we hope to see you here again soon!

Dancing Rabbit Ecovillage is an intentional community and educational nonprofit near Rutledge, MO, focused on demonstrating sustainable living possibilities. For more information, see our website at www.dancingrabbit.org.

Living Life Over


Rutledge is celebrating their 16th Fall Festival on September 21, 2013.  This year, the community will also be celebrating the fact that Rutledge was formed 125 years ago.

Events start off bright and early with craft tables and vendors setting up at 9:00 a.m.  The parade starts forming at 9:30 in front of the school house and raffle and agriculture contests both start at 9:30 a.m.  Food service will begin at 11:30 a.m. and Pedal Tractor Pull starts at 12:30.  This year’s Fall Festival will also feature Bingo in the Community Building starting at 1:00 p.m.

All proceeds from the event will go toward the new Rutledge Community Building.


Scotland County Emergency Management Director, Bryan Whitney, announced that the county, city, and school would be receiving state and federal aid to help recover from storm damage experienced across the region in July.

Preliminary estimates for the storm damage in the county had exceeded $400,000, predominantly for gravel loss and other county road related costs.


The past three week shave been filled with aspirations and hope for a community that is seeking an economical boost.  Unfortunately that hope was dashed on September 1st when Barker Co. LTD announced it would be building its new 400-employee custom refrigeration plant in Centerville, IA, not in Memphis.


A great afternoon of events are scheduled for the long awaited dedication of the new hard surface runway at the Briggs-Smith Memorial Airport, Memphis, to be held Sunday afternoon, September 18th.

Beginning at noon with a barbecue on the grounds (see ad for meal price), the afternoon is chucked full of events expected to attract a large crowd.

Senator Norman Merrell will be guest speaker for the afternoon dedication.  Also expected to be in attendance are Congressman Harold Volkmer, First District Representative Steve Waters, and Representative Stephen Carroll from the adjoining district.  Sending regrets they cannot attend are Governor Ashcroft, Senator Danforth, Senator Bond, and Betty Hearnes.

Activities throughout the afternoon include music by KMEM; Remote control Plane Flying; Parachute jumb by Kirksville jumpers; Airshow by a Fenton, Iowa pilot; Spray plane exhibition; and awards to oldest pilot, youngest pilot, newest pilot, pilot coming from farthest distance, oldest plane, and others.


Announcement is being made this week of the purchase of the Ben Franklin store by Caroll and Kay Yost of Marshfield, MO.  The store name will be changed to “Yost Variety”.

The Yosts have moved to Memphis and are residing at 306 West Jefferson. They are the parents of four sons, Mark, 21, of Denver, Scott, 20, of Marshfield, Drew, 17, a senior at Scotland County R-1, and Kendall, 13, an eighth grader.  They are members of the United Methodist Church.

Mr. Yost is also a member of the Lions Club and Mrs. Yost, a member of the Business and Professional Women.

We welcome them to Memphis.


Hall B. Ammons of east of Gorin may have performed a “first” here in Northeast Missouri last week.  On Thursday, August 29, he combined between 8 and 9 acres of beans, and as far as we can learn, this is the first time any N. E. MO farmer has ever combined beans in August!  In fact, Hal seems to have rushed the season by a good two weeks.  Bean harvest here seldom gets under way before September 15.

Ammons planted the field May 7, using an early maturing variety, Lindarin.  He drilled the seed, used a high-potash fertilizer, and kept weeds at a minimum with a commercial weed killer.

The beans produced over 30 bushels per acre, and tested low in moisture content (12-13).


Mr. and Mrs. Harley Kerr purchased the Reeves’ Dairy Queen on Highway No. 15 north from Judge and Mrs. B. O. Reeves.

The Reeves will finish this season and Mr. Kerr’s sister, Miss Helen Kerr of Chicago plans to come to Memphis and operate the Dairy Queen next season.


Fred DeRosear and Gerald Courtney purchased the Tri-County Sales Company from Jack Boyer of Burlington, Edward Benson and L.R. Sherrill.  Possession was given immediately.

Mr. DeRosear has been employed at the Rose Electric Co., for the past three years.  Mr. Courtney was employed at the Pepsi-Cola Bottling Company and more recently by Joe Creek Sr., contractor.

The Tri-County Sales Company is a corporation, owned by Boyer, Benson, and Sherrill.  The corporation was not sold, only the electric business.

The new firm will operate under a new name to be determined later and will occupy the same building which is owned by P.R. Allen.

CHARLES “CHARLIE” OWEN PRICE (6/8/1929 -9/4/2018)

Charles “Charlie” Owen Price, 89, of Wyaconda, MO, died peacefully Tuesday, September 4, 2018 in Columbia, MO, with his loving daughter Melinda by his side.  Melinda has devoted the past several years caring for her awesome father.

Charles was born on June 8, 1929 in Gorin, MO, the son of Owen Powell and Thelma “Beryl” Heath Price. He graduated from Wyaconda High School in Wyaconda, MO.

Charles was a veteran of the United States Navy.  He proudly served his country during the Korean War.

Charles had been employed at Gardner Denver in LaGrange, MO for thirty-six years, retiring in 1999.  He continued to work driving for a medical transportation company until 2009.

Charles enjoyed riding motorcycles, flying airplanes and traveling. We apologize to those he buzzed in the field while flying his airplane and chasing you from your tractors.  Also, for scaring those who rode with him and sometimes making you sick.  The fun memory of landing on Highway 22 in Centralia, MO, not once but twice, just because he could.  We must mention his passion for the “ladies”.  He had many special relationships over his lifetime.  He truly lived life to the fullest.

Charles is survived by two sons, C. Wayne Price (Jackie) of Quincy, IL, Stephen E. Price (Teresa) of Blue Springs, MO; two daughters, Melinda S. Gifford of Wyaconda, MO and Kimberly A. Carson (Glen) of Fulton, MO; seven grandchildren, Sabrina Sparks (Donny) of Maywood, MO, Sarah Schlenker (Shawn) and Pamela Price all of Des Moines, IA and Timothy Price (Elizabeth) of Blue Springs, MO, Russel Justice (Jess) of Ely, United Kingdom, Michael Justice (Gaby) of Holts Summit, MO  and Jared Justice of Columbia, MO; four great-granddaughters, Kelsea Price, Jennifer Sparks, Nicole Sparks and Kira Justice; five great-grandsons, Payton Price, Nathaniel Schlenker, Isaac Schlenker, Kayden Justice and Noah Price; and one great-great-grandson, Bodhi Ripley.

He was preceded in death by his parents; son, Michael Price; son-in-law, Frank Gifford; daughter-in-law, Linda Price; grandsons, Tyler Price and Christopher Justice; sister, Isabel (Joseph) Peterson; and brother, Donald (Dolores) Price; and a dear friend and partner in crime, Kent DaVolt.

There will be a grave side service with military honors at a later date.

Charlie, “On the Road Again”.

City to Offer Residential Bulk Clean Up Sept. 19 & 26

The Memphis City Sanitation Service will be offering its annual fall residential bulk trash collection services again in September.

Residential customers of the City of Memphis may place bulk items at the curb by 7:00 a.m. on the following dates: normal weekly Tuesday residential customers on  Wednesday, September 19th; and Friday residential customers  on Wednesday, September 26th.

Acceptable bulk items include, but are not limited to televisions, microwaves, computers, small appliances such as toasters, coffee makers, etc., couches, tables, chairs and other furniture, bed springs and mattresses (must be dry), carpet and carpet pads (4ft sections and bundled), lawn furniture, large discarded toys, swing sets (dismantled), barbecue grills (no propane tanks), sinks and toilets, lawn mowers (with oil & gas removed).

Unacceptable bulk items include construction, demolition, or remodeling materials including but not limited to:  concrete, bricks, rock, dirt, sheet rock, lumber and shingles.  Other unacceptable items include:  appliances, batteries, tires, liquids (such as paint, gas or oil), yard waste, vegetation, burnt residue, ashes, or small metal pieces.

There will not be a central dumpster available during the clean up this year. The roll off is paid for by city sanitation and had been offered at no extra cost to city residents. Overflow issues compounded by disposal of unaccepted bulk items were cited as reasons the dumpster would not be offered this fall. Organizers indicated alternate methods will be considered in the future to make the drop-off dumpster available for future bulk clean-up days.


Dale and Judy Good of Rutledge, are the parents of a daughter, JoBeth Marie Good, born August 28, 2018 at 12:04 a.m. at Scotland County Hospital in Memphis. JoBeth weighed 8 lbs 2 oz and was 20 inches long. She has a sibling, Kristy Grace. Grandparents are Edward and Janice Zimmerman of Fortuna and Ivan and Anna Mae Good of Rutledge.


Mark and Melinda Hoover of Memphis are the parents of a daughter, Amber Nicole Hoover, born August 27, 2018 at 5:18 p.m. at Scotland County Hospital in Memphis. Amber weighed 7 lbs. 6 oz and was 20 inches long. Siblings are Makaylee, Kylen and Isaiah. Grandparents are Carl and Esther Hoover of New Holland, PA; and Alvin and Rosanna Garman of Memphis. Great-grandparents are Laura and the late Irvin Garman; Julia and the late George Zimmerman; and Mary and the late Jonas Nolt.

Probst Reunion Held August 25

After twenty-three years. The Probst clan gathered at the Memphis City Lake, August 25, 2018, for a fish fry and a reunion.

Those present from the Memphis area were David and Denise Probst and Kennedy; Greg and Katherine Probst and Clayton, Levi and Bryce, Eric and Shyanne Probst and Rance and Addalynn; Kevin and Jennifer Holton and Kalissa.  Others present were Kaleb and Zalyn, from Unionville, MO; Kyle and Courtney Tague and Kinslee, from Beardstown, IL; Stacey Krous, from Pacific Jct., IA; Danny and Leann Probst and Addison, from Kirksville, MO; Ed and Tammy Probst, from Gillette, WY; Mike Eastin, from Benton, IA; Don and Diane Zollman and Hayden, from Mt. Ayr, IA; Tim and Michelle Bogan and Brittani and Konnor, from Kanosh, Ut; Rick and Leola Bogan, and last, but not least, from Memphis, Ava Probst, the matriarch of the clan.

There was much picture taking, including a five generation one, visiting, catching up, an remembering past times.

A great time was had by all and rumor has it that we are going to do it again next year!

Rutledge Renegades

Elaine Zimmerman and her Aunt Arlene Sauder ate breakfast at Zimmerman’s Food Court.

Neta Phillips went to Kirksville.

Martin Guinn and Reva Hustead went to Edina Corn Festival.

The Annual Grinding at Childers at Sandhill was held Saturday, September 8, 2018.  Victor Childers, (Polis, IN) was in charge of the grinding wheel while his son-in-law, Richard Arnold, ran the tractor.  Victor’s daughter, Katharine Martin, from Jacksonville, FL, came to help.  John and Sue Guio, DeKalb, IL; Joe Forrester, Columbia, MO; and Paul Slater, from Bridgeton, MO, were also there.

Ronnie and Bonnie Young came with John Cook in his “car”, a Harley-Davidson front and Chevy.

Larry Tague said he was here with Dennis Asbury and Joy Asbury from Center, MO.

Opossum in the Persimmon tree, Rabbit on the ground, Rabbit said to opossum, Throw some of those Persimmons down.

Victor brought some Persimmons in from his trees.

Some of those in this week were Dale Tague, Don Tague, Neta Phillips, Doris Day, Ralph Von Holt, Reva Hustead, Martin Guinn, Oren and Celina Erickson, Bob and Dorothy Hunolt, Neal and Dawn Kirkpatrick, and John Riddle.

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