Opinion

Time to wrap up another year of writing about high-school sports until the calendar kicks off again later this summer.

The Environmental Protection Agency published the latest edition of the Inventory of U.S. Greenhouse Gas Emissions and Sinks: 1990-2022. The report has been published annually since 1990 and provides an annual estimate of all man-made greenhouse gas emission sources in the U.S. as well as estimates of the amount of carbon trapped in forest and vegetation soil.

Quite frequently I get calls from farmers across the area asking how they can dispose of old chemicals. Often these were left over from prior years plantings or many times they are cleaning out barns due to a death in the family.

As someone employed in food service for most of my life, it is with much interest that I attend the National Restaurant Association show in Chicago each May. Though I am retired from the business, it is still fascinating to observe the latest trends and changes in the industry.

Planters continue to roll out in the fields as we near the completion of spring planting. Weather forecasts through the summer continue to predict warmer-than-normal temperatures for the Corn Belt with near normal precipitation. Should that occur as predicted it should be a relatively-good growing year. Of course, we never know until Fall harvest kicks-in.

With Forreston’s sectional final loss to East Dubuque in baseball and the IHSA track & field meet completed, the high-school sports year for Ogle County comes to a close.

It’s that time of year when farmers head to the fields for spring planting. That means encountering farm equipment on rural roads across Ogle County. Roadway safety is important so let’s look at precautions we can all take to make travel safer.

Thank you to the businesses in the Forrestville Valley area who over the years have contributed to the Easter Seals Autism School. I hope you will continue to help in the years to come. April was Autism Awareness Month and I'm sure donations were solicited.

As of press time, Forreston and Stillman Valley remain alive in boys baseball. Everyone else in softball and baseball has been eliminated, including No. 1 sub-sectional baseball seed Byron.

Things have been hot and heavy this week with all of spring sports engaged in the post season. At press time, the only thing to report on is girls track and field, with a sectional taking place May 10.

Breanna Cisketti, Gracie Prose, Cooper Alderks, Molly Blum, Carter Conderman, Aylivia Danekas, Bailey Jackson and Jack Richolson were all recently named as recipients of scholarships awarded by the Ogle County Farm Bureau in 2024.

We Americans are practical. We cast a suspicious eye on theories. We rely on common sense — self-evident ideas that nearly everyone shares.

Planting season continues at a robust pace as farmers across the area try to hit those optimum planting dates. As for me I failed in that regard this year.

I was born in Oregon. But my father and I moved to California where I finished my last two years of high school. I immediately joined the Army and was stationed at Fort Lewis, Washington for nine months then was sent overseas.

There were a couple of notable items from the Ogle County Track & Field Meet. In the boys portion, the 119.33 to 119 win by Forreston-Polo over Rochelle was the closest margin in the 50-year plus history of the meet. Additionally, Andrew Nuyen of Rochelle became the first pole vaulter in the county to crack the 15-foot barrier.

It is Friday evening on April 26 and instead of sitting in front of my computer writing this, I wish I was at Lander-Loomis Field. That is where the most significant boys track meet of the regular season for northern Illinois small schools would have been taking place.

Add Stillman Valley to list of school districts instituting an Athletic Hall of Fame. It will include teams, individuals, coaches and friends.

The long and bloody history leading to the war in Gaza brings to mind ancient Greek tragedies, in which the characters were helpless against fate, the laws of the universe, and their own mistakes. A similar feeling of tragic destiny hovers over Israel and the Palestinians. It arises in their case from human nature — and economics.

The USDA released the first insights into net farm income expectations for 2024. The report anticipates a decrease from 2023’s forecast of $155 billion to $116 billion – a drop of nearly $40 billion, or 25.5%, and the largest recorded year-to-year dollar decrease in net farm income.

As Christians, we must condemn “Christian Nationalism” as a distortion of the Gospel of Jesus and a threat to American democracy.

In 2011, I compiled a lengthy feature on declining enrollments in northwest Illinois and the impact it was having on participation in sports.

The long and bloody history leading to the war in Gaza brings to mind ancient Greek tragedies, in which the characters were helpless against fate, the laws of the universe, and their own mistakes. A similar feeling of tragic destiny hovers over Israel and the Palestinians. It arises in their case from human nature — and economics.

In 2001, I participated in Illinois Farm Bureau’s inaugural Market Study Tour to China. Our group visited a training kitchen where chefs were learning recipes featuring U.S. beef and pork products. In the kitchen’s cooler, I discovered the pork was from a facility in Waterloo, Iowa, where many of my own hogs were processed.

Yep, legislators are back at it in Springfield working on legislation that may or may not see the light of day. As usual they will be racing to get their bills filed by the filing deadline, then the speakers in both chambers will decide what does get assigned to committee, and what doesn’t (that’s known as killing the bill).

Not much to write about this week, as I’ve been away from the sports scene while cloistered at Bishop Lane Retreat House during a three-day gathering of Christian men. By cloistered, it means leaving phones, watches or any other attachments at home.

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