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Community News

Governor Holcomb calling for lowering of flags for Sen. Bob Dole

Governor Eric J. Holcomb is directing flags to be flown at half-staff to honor the life of Senator Bob Dole.


Flags should be flown at half-staff at the Indiana Statehouse immediately until sunset on Thursday, Dec. 9, 2021.


Gov. Holcomb also asks businesses and residents to lower their flags to half-staff.

Santa visits Kewanna on December 11

Santa will make a special appearance at the Kewanna Union Township Public Library on Saturday, December 11 from 10:30-12:00 to pose for pictures and to hear children's Christmas wishes. 


The library is located 210 E. Main St., Kewanna.


We will have treats to eat, crafts to make, and lots of Christmas stories to listen to. Children of all ages are welcome to attend this holiday event


For more information call Kewanna Union Township Public Library at 574-653-2011, visit our website or check out our Facebook page.



Small Business Saturday/Keep The Cheer Here and Play Bingo

Small Business Saturday is this Saturday, November 27, 2021, and the Fulton County Chamber of Commerce is taking part by offering the Keep The Cheer Here and Play Bingo event.  Download the below photos and visit the participating businesses between November 27 and December 4, 2021, for your chance to win Chamber Bucks.

Fulton County vaccine site / testing site holiday hours announced

The Fulton County vaccine site at 1009 W 3rd Street , Rochester, will be closed November 25 and 26 for the Thanksgiving holiday.


December schedule

Thursdays and Fridays, 8 - 4 pm (closed from noon-1 pm for lunch)

Walk-ins accepted.


Closed December 23 and 24 for the Christmas holiday and also Dec 31 for New Year's


Moderna (18+), Pfizer (11+)  and Pfizer pediatric (5-11yrs old) are available



Testing Site -1009 E 3rd Street, Rochester

Closed Nov 26 for Thanksgiving holiday


December hours remain the same - No appointment required

Free Rapid and PCRS. 

No PCRS on Wednesdays

Monday and Friday, 8 - 4

Wednesday, 12 - 8

Saturaday, 8-1


Closed Dec 24 and 25 for Christmas & Dec 31 and Jan 1 for New Year's

Health officials urge Hoosiers to join Great American Smokeout

Today is the Great American Smokeout (GASO), a day to commit to being tobacco free. The American Cancer Society (ACS) designates the third Thursday of every year as the GASO, which encourages smokers to make a pledge to quit using tobacco products for just one day.


“The most important thing Hoosiers can do to improve their health is to quit using any tobacco products,” said State Health Commissioner Kris Box, M.D., FACOG. “The Indiana Department of Health supports those who take their first steps toward making a plan to quit for good.” The ACS emphasizes that those who use tobacco don’t have to quit in one day – they just have to start with “day one” of their quit journey. 


“During this year’s Great American Smokeout event, we hope Hoosiers will join us in committing, or recommitting, to living smoke-free lives and encourage their friends and family members to do the same,” Box said. “We know quitting is difficult, but Indiana has resources to help.”


More than 1 million Hoosier adults smoke, and more than 18 percent of Indiana high school students used e-cigarettes in 2018, double the figure from 2016. Smoking can increase the risk of severe respiratory illnesses, such as COVID-19 and influenza. It also contributes to preterm birth and higher infant mortality rates.


Indiana offers free programs to help Hoosiers quit tobacco use, such as Quit Now Indiana. It offers tobacco quit services for all Indiana residents ages 13 and older.


Quit Now Indiana has been working to make quitting easier through new and improved service offerings, including Text2Start, a new and easy way for Hoosiers to connect with a variety of quit services that include text, coaching, and medication support, which provides increased flexibility through a choice of tools to help individuals quit. While supplies last, Hoosiers can receive free medications when enrolling in services.


Hoosiers interested in starting their quit journey can visit, call 1-800-QUIT-NOW or text READY to 200-400 for assistance. Youth looking to quit vaping can also text INDIANA to 873373 to access the Live Vape Free text messaging program.

White House turkeys to call Purdue home

Purdue University’s Department of Animal Sciences in the College of Agriculture will provide a home and care for the National Thanksgiving Turkey and alternate following this week’s National Thanksgiving Turkey Presentation at the White House. The turkeys will live at Purdue’s Animal Science Research and Education Center, where they will reside in a separate enclosed indoor setting with access to a shaded grassy area.


Purdue Agriculture’s Department of Animal Sciences includes a nationally recognized poultry program, with experts in nutrition, health, education, behavioral neuroendocrinology, management, behavior and animal welfare.


The turkeys were raised under the supervision of Phil Seger, 2021 National Turkey Federation chairman, and by southern Indiana turkey producer Andrea Welp in cooperation with Farbest Farms. President Joseph R. Biden, Jr. will pardon the National Thanksgiving Turkey and alternate, then both turkeys will return to Indiana to live at Purdue University following their trip to Washington, D.C.


Indiana is the fourth largest turkey producing state in the nation and ranks first in duck production and second in egg production. The poultry industry contributes more than $12 billion in total economic activity to Indiana and employs more than 12,000 people.


Karen Plaut, the Glenn W. Sample Dean of Agriculture, emphasized the importance of Purdue Agriculture’s connection to Indiana poultry.


“Purdue Agriculture’s animal sciences faculty and Extension educators have a long history with the Indiana poultry industry, including working alongside the Indiana Turkey Market Development Council and Indiana State Poultry Association. We value the importance and potential of our collaborations,” she said.


John Blanton, Animal Sciences department head and professor, looks forward to highlighting the many strengths of Purdue’s poultry program.


“We are extremely fortunate at Purdue to have faculty with a wide range of expertise as well as talented students,” he said. “I am grateful to Dr. Marisa Erasmus and Dr. Greg Fraley, the Terry and Sandra Tucker Endowed Chair of Poultry Science, co-advisors of the Purdue Poultry Club, for leading this project and maximizing the benefits for students and the community.”


Erasmus spoke about this opportunity to educate people about turkeys:


“Although turkeys are an important American cultural tradition, most people do not know much about turkey production and management, so this is an amazing chance for us to increase awareness and knowledge of turkeys’ behavior, personalities and welfare,” Erasmus said.


Educating students will also be a primary focus in the coming months, Fraley said.


“The turkeys will provide a great resource for students to learn more about the poultry industry and about policies that impact poultry production,” he said.


The turkeys, whose names will be announced later this week, will officially be welcomed to Purdue with the Boilermaker Special 1-2 p.m. (weather permitting) Nov. 29 on the Memorial Mall. Animal sciences professors Marisa Erasmus and Greg Fraley will be in attendance and available for interviews.


You can follow the turkeys’ trip to the White House and back home again to Indiana on social media. 

Daylight Saving Time coming to end – Don't forget to Turn and Test

It’s time to fall back as daylight saving time ends this Sunday, Nov. 7 at 2 a.m.


As people turn their clocks back one hour, the American Red Cross reminds everyone to test their smoke alarms.


This weekend is also a good time for everyone to take these lifesaving steps to help prepare households for home fires, the nation’s most frequent disaster:


  • Check smoke alarms and replace batteries if needed. Working smoke alarms cut the risk of dying in a home fire by half. Test smoke alarms once a month. Change the batteries at least once a year if your model requires it. Place smoke alarms on every level of your home, including inside and outside bedrooms, and sleeping areas.


  • Create and practice your home fire escape plan. Fire experts agree that people may have as little as two minutes to escape a burning home before it’s too late. This weekend, create a home fire escape plan with your household and practice it until everyone can escape in less than two minutes. Escape plans should include at least two ways to escape from every room and a meeting spot at a safe distance away from your home, such as your neighbor’s home or landmark like a specific tree in your front yard, where everyone knows where to meet.

Home Fire Campaign Saving Lives

Each year, the Red Cross responds to more than 62,000 disasters—the vast majority of which are home fires. Every day, seven people die in home fires, and most tragedies occur in homes without working smoke alarms. That’s why the Red Cross launched the Home Fire Campaign with community partners in 2014 to reduce needless deaths and injuries.


So far, the Home Fire Campaign has reached more than 1.7 million people and is credited with saving more than 1,000 lives across the country. The Indiana Region has installed more than 400 smoke alarms and made over 220 homes safer so far this year as part of the national Red Cross Home Fire Campaign. Since the campaign’s inception, volunteers and partners have also:


  • Installed more than 2.2 million free smoke alarms
  • Reached more than 1.6 million children through youth preparedness programs
  • Made more than 948,000 households safer from the threat of home fires


People can visit for free resources and to learn more about how to protect themselves and their loved homes from fire, or contact their local Red Cross to find out about smoke alarm installation events in their community.

DNR offers free admission to veterans, active-duty military, Nov. 11

All veterans and active-duty military personnel, and everyone in their vehicle, will be admitted free to DNR state parks, reservoir properties, state forest recreation areas and state off-road vehicle riding areas on Veterans Day, Thursday, Nov. 11.

This includes admission to Falls of the Ohio State Park’s Interpretive Center.

“We appreciate the sacrifices and service of our veterans and active-duty military and look forward to recognizing them with a day to explore some of the best outdoor places in our state,” said Terry Coleman, director of Indiana State Parks.

Veterans and military personnel should present ID or evidence of military service where entrance gates are in operation. For proof of military status, gate attendants will accept:


—Discharge papers (veteran’s DD Form 214)

—Veteran license plates: Ex-POW, Purple Heart, Disabled Hoosier Veteran, Pearl Harbor Survivor. Veteran license plates also include:

—Air Force Veteran

—Army Veteran

—Coast Guard Veteran

—Marine Corps Veteran

—Merchant Marine Veteran

—Navy Veteran

—U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs Disability Award Letter

—Veterans hunting and fishing license

—Documents showing veteran benefits with veteran’s name on document

—Any other certificate or verification letter or form that establishes past or present military service


For general information about state park, reservoir, forest properties, and state off-road vehicle riding areas, see

Fulton County Chamber of Commerce invites participation in Small Business Saturday

Small Business Saturday, proudly supported by American Express, is Saturday, November 27.


The Fulton County Chamber of Commerce is encouraging community members to support local businesses on Small Business Saturday and the week following by sponsoring a Shop Small Bingo game as a way to have fun and support the local economy.


The Chamber is currently looking for small businesses to participate in the Bingo game. It is free to participate, and Chamber membership is not required.


If you own a small business in Fulton County and would like to learn more about the program, please contact Stephanie Hensley or Jillian Smith at 574.224.2666 or


You may register to participate at by Monday, November 8.

Rochester's Times Theater receives boost for marquee restoration

A generous donation will help the Times Theater in Rochester to restore its marquee.


$15,000 was received by the Times Theater from an anonymous donor.  According to a release from the theater organization the donor's only reques was that the funds be used towards  restoration of the marquee.  The donor (& the Times) hope this donation will inspire others and seed the fundraising campaign that will ultimately see the neon lights shine once again on Main Street. 


Current projection for the marquee restoration is upwards of $70,000. 

Earlier this year, The Times Theater participated in the Main Street Revitalization  Program (MSRP), which facilitated the removal of the stonework and revealed the original brick storefronts.  New windows were also installed, doors and fresh paint,  too.  The marquee and ticket booth did not qualify for this program.  

Currently, The Times is working on ADA upgrades, approval of emergency exits and installation of lighting.   Recent fundraising has secured funds for the concession stand, lobby and ticket booth (A thank you here for @trevamulligan). 

Want to learn more?  Donate or volunteer?  You can reach out by email to

The mailing address is P.O.Box 168 Rochester, Indiana. 


Phone 317.409.1438.

Ivy Tech Kokomo sets 'Tuesday @ the Tech' for high school students for next week

High school students, and their parents or guardians, are invited to “Tuesday @ the Tech” on Oct. 19 to tour the new campus of Ivy Tech Community College Kokomo and learn about the options it offers for their futures.


The program is set for 9 a.m. to noon on the Ivy Tech Kokomo Campus at 1815 E. Morgan St.


“With a new campus, new programs, and new support services, Ivy Tech Kokomo offers pathways to new futures for students of all ages,” said Derry Ebert, vice chancellor of Enrollment Services for the Ivy Tech Kokomo Service Area. “For the Oct. 19 event, we hope parents and guardians will bring their high school students out to see the new campus and learn more about how they can get a jump on their future with all that’s new here.”


The program will begin at 9 a.m. in Hingst Hall, the community room in the new Health Professions Center. Ivy Tech faculty and staff will be on hand to talk about programs, financial aid, advising, and class scheduling, among other aspects of moving into higher education.


For more information about how to register, go to .

America's largest grocery retailer to host nationwide holiday hiring event on October 13

The Kroger Co. (NYSE: KR) announced its Family of Companies' second nationwide hybrid hiring event, including virtual and on-site interviews, will take place from 2-5 p.m. ET on Wednesday, October 13.


The organization's mission is to hire 20,000 associates by finding talent for retail, e-commerce, manufacturing, supply chain, merchandising, logistics, corporate, and pharmacy and healthcare roles.


"The Kroger Family of Companies is eager to welcome 20,000 associates to our organization as we prepare for an incredible holiday season where customers are planning to return to larger family gatherings and celebrations," said Tim Massa, Kroger's senior vice president and chief people officer. "It's an exciting time to work in grocery retail, and as one of the leading retailers and employers in America, we're committed to offering associates a culture of opportunity and career with purpose, competitive pay and benefits, and flexible schedules. We truly want our associates to have a rewarding and uplifting experience while meeting our customers' needs and delivering on our promise to be in-stock, fresh, and friendly."


The Kroger Family of Companies offers resources, benefits, and training, to support and develop associates and make their lives easier including:

  • Wages & Benefits: The Kroger Family of Companies provides comprehensive compensation packages, including competitive salaries and wages, healthcare, and retirement. In addition to an $800 million incremental investment in associate wages and training over the last three years, the organization is investing $350 million more in 2021 that has increased its average hourly wage to more than $16 nationally and when coupled with benefits, total compensation is more than $21 an hour.
  • Continued Education & Tuition Reimbursement: The Kroger Family of Companies' tuition reimbursement program, offering up to $21,000 for both part-time and full-time associates, covers a GED to PhD. Since inception, this program has benefitted 6,789 associates, with hourly associates making up 88.4% of those who have taken advantage of the offering so far.
  • Training & Development: The Kroger Family of Companies offers on-demand, role-specific training and resources through FEED desktop and mobile and modern learning platforms like Axonify as well as leadership, career advancement, and diversity, equity, and inclusion training.
  • Health & Wellness: The Kroger Family of Companies continues to further support associates' safety, health, and well-being by coaching managers to lead with compassion and empathy and through resources like The Well-Being Assistant powered by Magellan Health that is available 24/7 and offers free counseling sessions as well as BetterHelp, another mental wellness resource. The organization also encourages use of Whil, a wellness platform that encourages activities like mindfulness, yoga, and sleep. Additionally, the organization continues to award a one-time payment of $100 to associates who become fully COVID-19 vaccinated.
  • Perks & Discounts: The Kroger Family of Companies provides flexible scheduling, an advance pay option through partner DailyPay, as well as discounts on groceries, electronics, streaming services, travel, and more.

"We know that a career looks different for everyone, so we strive to provide the tools and support associates need to create their own path to success. No matter where your journey begins, we have fresh opportunities for everyone," continued Massa.


Hiring Event Details
The Kroger Family of Companies welcomes individuals who are looking for a career with purpose. Available opportunities include store leaders, customer service managers, personal shoppers, e-commerce specialists, digital marketing managers, software engineers, data architects, delivery drivers, warehouse workers, machine operators, category and procurement managers, financial analysts, pharmacists, pharmacy technicians, project managers, and administrative supporters.


To preview all available roles and register for the hiring event, visit The Kroger Family of Companies' career site.



Upcoming changes to SNAP for October

The Indiana Family and Social Services Administration has announced two upcoming changes the U.S. Food and Nutrition Services Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program. Together these changes may impact the benefits received by Hoosier SNAP participants.


  • On Sept. 30, 2021, the 15% increase in SNAP benefits provided as part of the American Rescue Plan Act of 2021 will end.
  • Starting in October 2021, benefits will increase due to the recent re-evaluation of the Thrifty Food Plan.

The result of these two updates occurring at the same time is that in October most SNAP participants will see a slight increase to their monthly benefit.


SNAP households may have heard that because of the updated Thrifty Food Plan their benefits are increasing. However, they may not understand that this increase is to the pre-pandemic benefit amounts—before the 15% increase. As a result, some participants may be expecting their benefits to increase substantially over their current level.


With these changes happening around the same time, SNAP participants, stakeholders, and others may become confused. Here is a Q and A from FNS that could help.





First Federal Savings Bank named a Five Star Member of the IBA

First Federal Savings Bank has been honored as a Five Star Member of the Indiana Bankers Association.


Pictured is Amanda Morris-Feldman, First Federal Savings Bank Executive Vice President, Treasurer and CFO and Chris Bennett, Indiana Bankers Association Vice President of Meets & Events 


The award was presented on September 24, by Chris Bennett, IBA Vice President of Meetings & Events, in recognition of First Federal Savings Bank’s Association involvement throughout 2020.


The Five Star Member designation recognizes those IBA-member banks which demonstrate outstanding commitment to the Association in five areas: political awareness, issues advocacy, life-long learning, IBA volunteerism, and Preferred Service Provider utilization.


“We very much appreciate the dedication of First Federal Savings Bankand as a Five Star Member bank,” said Amber Van Til, IBA president and CEO. “Our Association is strong, thanks to our supportive members.”


The Indiana Bankers Association supports Indiana banking through issues analysis, professional education, and products and services that enhance member banks’ ability to serve their communities.

Akron Summer's End Festival

Akron Summer’s End Festival is Saturday, September 25 from 4-9 pm at Pike Memorial Park.  



Car, Truck and Motorcycle Cruise-in and parking for the event should enter into the park on Virgil Street.


Golf Cart, UTV and bicycles should line up behind the Akron Fire Department at 3:30 pm. The route will be Walnut Street to Virgil Street to the park.



Bring your chairs, a sweatshirt and blankets. 

Fulton County Covid testing, vaccinations dates & times next week

September 20-25

Fulton County Health Department & Strike Team

Fulton County Fairgrounds

1009 W. 3rd St, Rochester


Free Drive up Covid-19 Testing

Enter Off Highway 31

Monday 8:00 am – 8:00 pm

Tuesday 12:00 pm-8:00 pm

Wednesday 12:00 pm-8:00 pm

Friday 8:00 am-4:00 pm

Saturday 8:00 am-1:00 pm


Free Vaccinations- Pfizer and J&J

Everett Smith Building

Enter off of 3rd Street

Monday 12:00pm-8:00pm

Tuesday 12:00pm-8:00pm

Wednesday 12:00-8:00pm


 No appointments required

                Face mask required & social distancing practiced

City of Rochester announces Utility Office drive-up window repair, hydrant flushing

The City of Rochester has announced drive-up services for the Utility Office will be altered during upcoming repairs.  The city has also released the schedule for an upcoming flushing of the hydrants.


Beginning September 27, the Rochester Utility Office drive-up window will be closed for repairs. The office will still be open for business, but the drive up services will not be available until repairs are complete.


The city anticipates drive-up services to be operational by September 30. All payment services are still available, such as: pay by phone, pay online, stop in the lobby, or send by USPS.

Beginning October 4, M.E. Simpson & Company will be performing the semi-annual unidirectional flushing of the city water main lines (process to clean the mains). The work will continue for 30 days, weather permitting.


During these dates you may experience cloudy or discolored water at any time. The water is safe to use and drink. Running it longer before use may help to clear it. Avoid washing white clothes while water is discolored.


The city apologizes for any inconvenience this may cause, but this does ensure the lines are properly maintained.

Streetlight pole work, painting continues in Rochester

The City of Rochester offered this reminder with downtown work continuing:


Michiana Contracting is replacing the street light poles in downtown Rochester and repainting the traffic signal poles. The work will continue for 2-3 weeks with weather permitting.


During these dates you may experience traffic delays and congestion in the downtown area. Please be extra cautious when driving downtown during this time as there will be workers located in the street.


We apologize for any inconvenience this may cause as we continue to improve our beautiful downtown streetscape.

Flags to half-staff in remembrance of 9/11

Governor Eric J. Holcomb is directing flags statewide to be flown at half-staff in honor of Patriot Day.


Flags should be flown at half-staff from sunrise until sunset on Saturday, Sept. 11.


Gov. Holcomb also asks businesses and residents to lower their flags to half-staff in remembrance of the victims of the Sept. 11.

Road closure planned for S.R. 25 seal coating operation

The Indiana Department of Transportation announces a seal coating operation for State Road 25 between Chase Rd and State Road 16 beginning on or after Monday, August 30. 


There will be soft road closure of State Road 25 in this location, with local access maintained through traffic control. Motorists should expect delays in the area or seek an alternate route using other state roads. The official detour will follow State Road 16 and State Road 17. 


This work should take approximately four days, but the schedule is weather dependent and subject to change. INDOT urges drivers to stay alert near crews and follow traffic directions carefully. Motorists are encouraged to allow extra time when driving through this area and should slow down and drive distraction-free through all work zones.

Efforts underway to install Safe Haven Baby Box in Rochester

The Knights of Columbus Council 5584 of St. Joseph Church in Rochester is leading an initiative to have a Safe Haven Baby Box installed at the fire department located at 2006 East State Road 14 in Rochester.


The purpose of the box is to help prevent the illegal and potentially deadly abandonment of infants by raising awareness of the Indiana Safe Haven Law and resources for mothers in crisis. It will be the 74th box in Indiana and the first in Fulton County.


Since April 2016, when the first box was installed, there have not been any infant deaths due to abandonment in the state.


Per the website, “The Indiana Safe Haven Law enables a person to give up an unwanted infant anonymously without fear of arrest or prosecution.As long as there are no signs of intentional abuse on the baby, no information is required of the person leaving the baby. Any knowledge of the date of birth, race, parent medical history, child's health or anything that would be useful to the child's caregiver would be greatly appreciated.”


Safe Haven Baby Box founder, Monica Kelsey, was abandoned as an infant. It is her mission to raise awareness of Safe Haven Laws and provide baby boxes to enable the anonymous surrender of an infant. Kelsey currently lives in Indiana and is a retired firefighter and medic.


How a Baby Box Works

The Safe Haven Baby Box is a safety device that legally permits a motherto surrender her newborn safely, securely and anonymously. The box will be installed in an exterior wall of the fire department. Once a parent opens the exterior door to the baby box, a silent alarm is triggered, and a call goes to police dispatch. After the parent places the newborn into the bassinet inside of the box, a second silent alarm triggers a second alert to dispatch. The parent can push a button or simply close the door which will set off a third alarm and call to dispatch. The exterior door automatically locks, while an interior door allows a medical staff member to safely secure the surrendered newborn. The child is then evaluated and taken to the hospital. The Indiana Department of Child Services will take the baby into custody and Child Protective Services will place the infant with a caregiver.


Safe Haven Crisis Hotline

The Safe Haven Crisis Hotline, 1-866-99BABY1,will be prominently displayed on the Safe Haven Baby Box. The hotline provides 24-hour dedicated emergency counseling and support for parents in crisis. The hotline has received over 5,000 calls from every state in America, referred over 500 women to crisis pregnancy centers, assisted in seven adoption referrals, and saved 100 babies by enabling legal Safe Haven surrenders.


Fundraising Support Needed

The Knights of Columbus from St. Joseph Catholic Church in Rochester has applied for grants and is seeking the community’s assistance to raise the funds to cover the installation and ongoing expenses related to the baby box. The initial cost is $15,000 and includes the purchase of the Safe Haven Baby Box; labor to install the box, electricity and alarm; and training for emergency personnel. Ongoing expenses estimated at $500 a year include the annual recertification of the box, maintenance, and alarm monitoring service fee. To date, the Knights of Columbus has secured $5,000 in funding via a $2,500 grant from REMC and fundraising efforts. Businesses and individuals are invited to make a tax-deductible contribution to the cause online at or by mailing a check to 2296 Sycamore Drive, Rochester, IN 46975. Checks should be made payable to K of C Baby Box.


“The Safe Haven Baby Box is a way for our community to come together to prevent the dangerous abandonment of children. Working together, we can provide this important resource and access to the crisis hotline for local mothers in crisis,” said Andrew “Ike” Halaschak, who is leading the fundraising effort.

Crop report takeaway: 'Indiana crop production doing very well'

Purdue College of Agriculture and Extension and United States Department of Agriculture experts gathered at the Indiana State Fair on Thursday (Aug. 12) to discuss the results of the 2021 USDA crop report and the current status of Indiana’s major cash crops.

Jason Henderson, director of Purdue Extension and senior associate dean of the Purdue College of Agriculture, moderated the discussion among panelists. Panelists were Nathanial Warenski, state statistician of the USDA, NASS, Indiana field office; Dan Quinn, Purdue assistant professor of agronomy and new extension corn specialist; Shaun Casteel, Purdue associate professor of agronomy and extension soybean and small grains specialist; Beth Hall, Indiana State Climatologist; and Jim Mintert, Purdue professor of agricultural economics and director of the Purdue Center for Commercial Agriculture. 

Indiana corn production is forecasted to reach 1.02 billion bushels this year, which would be a 3.7 % increase from 2020 production. The expected yield is up 3.7% from 2020 at 194 bushels per acre. As of Aug. 1, corn condition was rated 76% good to excellent.

“Indiana corn looks good to great and we hope to keep this trend to finish strong. A few things that stood out to me include disease, specifically tar spot and corn rust, and past saturated conditions that could potentially impact the yield,” Quinn said.

Soybean yield is projected to reach 60 bushels per acre, compared to 58 bushels per acre in 2020. As of Aug. 1, soybean condition was rated 72% good to excellent.

“In terms of the soybeans, this season has been anything but normal. We’ve had wet and drought conditions, affecting the root systems and causing disease. The next 35 days are critical for yield development,” Casteel said.

The panel also discussed the crop market, trade and potential impacts from wildfires.

“We have started seeing some of the impacts of the wildfires, including traveling smoke, which is effective at blocking sunlight,” Hall said.

Mintert said, “Today’s report was a bit of surprise when looking at USDA estimates versus trade. This will be a very positive crop year in terms of income and does lead us to expect positive impacts on cash-rent.”

Henderson ended the discussion by observing: “The main takeaway from this report is that Indiana crop production is doing very well. Other areas of the nation weren’t so fortunate, which will potentially open up market opportunities for Indiana farmers.”

The USDA August Crop Report is available online.