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Organic cost share deadline nears Minnesota organic farmers and processors seeking certification have until Oct. 30 to apply for the 2009- 2010 Organic Certification Cost Share Program. The program reimburses up to 75 percent of an organic operation's certification costs, with a maximum payment of $750. "Certified organic" is a verified claim, which means an independent organization reviews records and inspects each operation at least once a year to make sure farmers and proces- sors are complying with the national organic standards and consumers are getting what they pay for. "We've already received 155 requests for certification cost share, and we don't want anyone who is eli- gible for a rebate to miss this opportu- nity," said Meg Moynihan, organic specialist for the Minnesota Department of Agriculture (MDA). Moynihan says the current pro- gram reimburses qualifying expenses incurred between Oct. 1, 2009 and Sept. 30, 2010. Applicants must sub- mit a one-page application form, doc- umentation of 2010 certification, and copies of invoices for certification- related costs. Those who did not receive a 2010 certificate before Sept. 30 may include a copy of their most recent organic certificate• All applications must be postmarked by Oct. 30, 2010. Application packets were mailed to more than 800 certified operations in August. Those who did not receive the materials may obtain the applica- tion form and guidelines at www.mda.state.mn.us/food/organic or by calling the MDA at 651-201- 6012. Organic agriculture is governed by a comprehensive set of federal regula- tions that prohibit the use of geneti- cally modified seeds, antibiotics and hormones. The regulations also pro- hibit the use of most synthetic pesti- cides and herbicides, and require practices that conserve soil and water and promote animal welfare. Funds for the cost share reimburse- ment program come from a coopera- tive agreement with the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA). Trygestad completes this year's Twin Cities Marathon Bellingham native Neil Trygestad, 40, of New Prague fulfilled a life long goal of running and completing the Twin Cities Marathon in Minneapolis/St. Paul on Oct. 3. More than 8,000 runners partici- pated in the event. Neil ran at a 10 minute mile pace, completing the race in four hours and 21 minutes. The winner's time was two hours and 14 minutes. "This was my first and most likely my last marathon; it was harder than I anticipated." said Trygestad. It was a picture perfect day for the event with sunshine and temperatures in the low 60s. Neil's mother Fran Trygestad and his wife Amy, and chil- dren Georgia, Chase and Iris cheered Neil along with more than 300,000 people that lined the fall-colored course that meandered through down- town Minneapolis, around the urban lakes, along the Mississippi River, and finished in St. Paul at the Capitol. Among those cheering on the run- ners was Minnesota Supreme Court judge and Minnesota Vikings Hall of Fame inductee, Allan Page, playing his tuba. A tradition Page has done for many years. And near the end of the race was Senator A1 Franken, encouraging each runner to finish the last 0.7 miles• Trygestad has always been a run- ner. He was on the cross country team at Bellingham High School, where he graduated in 1989. He has run in half marathons before, but this was his first full marathon. His wife also enjoys running and theh daughter Georgia, 8, is taking after her parents having already run m a couple 5K races• Neil is the son of Chuck and Fran Trygestad of rural Bellingham. NElL TRY(3EsTAD stands nn front of the State Capital after crossing the finish line in the Twin Cities Marathon Oct. 3. Current rate 4% Guarantee State reports 300 road fatalities so far this year The Minnesota Department of Public Safety (DPS) Office of Traffic Safety reports the state's year-to-date traffic fatalities topped 300 this week. As of Sept. 29, the state's preliminary traffic death count is 303, compared to 313 at this time last year. Minnesota is on pace for 405 traffic deaths for 2010-fewer than the 421 deaths in 2009, which was the lowest death count since 1944. The state hit the 200 road death mark in late July. The projection of 405 deaths for the year is very close to the goal of the state's core traffic safety initiative, Toward Zero Deaths (TZD), of fewer than 400 deaths in 2010. However, with the relatively deadly summer dri- ving season at an end, officials say the 400-deaths target is still within reach. Traffic Safety officials say seat belt enforcement, as well as aggressive and impaired driving patrols coupled with educational outreach have fac- tored into the continued trend of fewer deaths• DPS also cites continued MnDOT engineering improvements and efficient emergency response to Breast cancer killer of 600 MN women a year The signature pink ribbons are hard to ignore across Minnesota, with October being designated National Breast Cancer Awareness Month. This year, more than 3,000 Minnesotans, mostly women, will be diagnosed with the disease - and about 600 will die. Yet it's one of the most treatable cancers, with a five- year survival rate of 90 percent if it's found before it spreads• American Cancer Society spokesman Lou Harvin says there is just one thing worse than hearing the words "you have cancer•" "And that is to hear someone say, 'Why didn't you come in earlier?' Because your cancer can grow to a much greater stage when it didn't have to in the first place." Experts recommend women get an annual mammogram beginning at age 40. Staying at a healthy body weight and exercising also are known to reduce the risk. Genetic testing is becoming another popular way for women to learn about their breast cancer risk. The test can predict a woman's likelihood to develop the disease, and encourage more vigilance. Harvin says he understands why it's difficult for many women to find the time to be proactive about their health. "They do put themselves at the bottom of the list, but we want women to put themselves first, because in many homes, if the woman s not around, the entire household falls apart." Breast cancer is second only to lung cancer in cancer deaths among women. One woman is diagnosed with breast cancer every three minutes across the United States, according to the Susan G. Komen Foundation• crashes are contributing to the lower death count-all elements of the TZD program• "The 300 deaths for the year is another sad reminder that we aren't taking traffic safety, as seriously as we need to, and this is resulting in hun- dreds of preventable deaths," says Cheri Marti, DPS Office of Traffic Safety director. "We've made progress at limiting road deaths, and we can continue that progress, but it has to start with motorists buckling up, driving focused, traveling at safe speeds and never getting behind the wheel impaired." The 303 traffic deaths for 2010 include-29 motorcyclists, a significant decrease from 48 this time in 2009; 24 pedestrians, slightly lower than the 26 at this time last year; and eight bicy- clists, up from six in 2009 at this time. TZD focuses on the application of four strategic areas to reduce crashes - education, enforcement, engineering and emergency trauma response. TZD is a partnership led by the departments of Public Safety, Transportation and Health, in cooperation with state and local law enforcement, Minnesota County Engineers Association, and the Center for Transportation Studies at the University of Minnesota. PUMPKINS, PUMPKINS, EVERYWHERI Plathe Pumpkin patch in Bellingham. Not busy harvesting their crops in the fie] elementary schools have been coming to harvest their pumpkins as well. Healthcare savings for There are countless ways to save on monthly expenses. You can cut out cable television and your morning latte or carpool to work. The small things are easy to identify and cut, but what about larger, less tangible expenses like healthcare? Whether you're 25, 40, or 55 years old, a health savings account (HSA) could help free up a big portion of your monthly budget. An HSA is paired with a qualified high-deductible health plan (HDHP) and gives you the option to save the money you would have spent on a more expensive health plan for medical expenses• There are many benefits to the account, such as the ability to carry the money over from year to year, a cash reserve for unexpected medical expenses, and tax savings*. Not sure if an HSA is right for you? Read on as Thrivent Financial Bank explains how an HSA can benefit you depending on your age. Young singles Having good health allows for max- imum savings with an HSA. Young singles may overlook the savings po- tential of HDHPs, but when used with an HSA to offset minor costs, young rESTERN MINNE IPRAIRIEWATERS.com Increased deer activity means risk of deer, car collisions increase their awareness of deer dur- ing the fall breeding season and offers these tips to decrease the odds of striking a deer: • Be observant because a deer standing calmly in a field may sud- denly jump into the road; anticipate the potential for this rapid change. • When observing a deer crossing the road ahead, slow down, and scan for more deer. Many times additional deer are out of view. • Slow down to avoid hitting a deer, but do not swerve because that can cause a person to lose control and strike another vehicle, leave the high- way and strike a tree or other object. • Be especially aware during the morning and afternoon when deer tend to be more active, moving between evening feeding areas and daytime bedding sites. • Elevate deer awareness at loca- tions with deer crossing signs, which indicate locations of frequent deer crossings. Fall is a time of movement and migration for many of Minnesota's wildlife species. White-tailed deer. which maintain an annual home range of about one square mile, increase their daily movements and become more active during this time of year. The shortening days of fall also trigger a whitetails' reproductive cycle with the peak of breeding com- ing during the first two weeks of November. As bucks begin to search for receptive females, they may sepa- rate the male fawn of the year from its mother. Yearling bucks, participat- ing in their first breeding season, may move many miles from their home range. "All of this natural white-tailed deer movement increases the number of deer crossing highways," said Col. Jim Konrad, DNR Enforcement director• "This in turn increases the chances for motorists to strike deer." The DNR encourages motorists to Notice of Final Merger Information Meeting 00MERS MUTUAL + :derated Telephone Compankl  . • Future. Communications. Today, 13IRA l l singles can reduce their monthly pre- miums, freeing up cash in their monthly budget• If you are young and living on your own income, having an emergency reserve for unexpected health care costs is practical and im- portant. While you must be an HDHP holder to contribute to an HSA. exist- ing savings in the HSA remain yours regardless of job or benefits changes• Families When you have kids at home, their needs come first• Families may shy away from an HDHP for fear of un- foreseen medical expenses requiring that the high deductible is met. With an Is what you'll find at the )nly have the farmers been Is but the children from le Plathe Pumpkin patch to all ages is a gr, at way to save money for health expem es, especially when providing for the family because the savings ac- crue fi om year to year, earn interest, and can be used for spouses and de- pendei ts as well. Pre-retirees who are saving for retirement can use an HSA as a m dical savings account for their own re tirement. Additionally the HSA can be used to supplement their tradi- tional retirement investments, as the saving can be withdrawn with no IRS penalt', at age 65. He th savings accounts provide a unique way to save on medical care, and ca 1 mean big savings for people at any st ge in life. With today's high un- emplo cment rate, shifting healthcare systen, and wavering marketplace, saving for medical expenses while earning interest and lowering your monthly premium makes good sense. For more information about HSAs and to calcalate your estimated savings by switching, visit Thrivent Financial Bank at http:// www.thriventbank.com/hsa Consult your tax advisor to find out about tax savings using an HSA. Come to Learn More About the Proposed Merger After more than a year's worth of research and consideration, the boards at Farmers Mutual Telephone and Federated Telephone have voted unanimously to propose a merger of the two cooperatives to their memberships. Members will be asked to vote on the proposal at a special meeting in November. These Regional Meetings are your opportunity to become informed and ask questions. A IRe lunch will be served beginning at 4:30 p.m. with a presentation and O,&A session from 5:00 to 6:30 p.m. at the following: Thursday, October 21 2010 at the Chokio-Alberta School, Chokio, MN All cooperative members are welcome to attend any and all of the informational meetings. You may also submit questions anytime at 888.609.6881 or merqerfarmersteLnet HSA, however, families are able to opt for an HDHP, paying lower monthly costs while knowing there is an out-of- pocket maximum in the case of a large medical bill. Children need medical care frequently and sometimes unex- pectedly, but that does not mean young families can't reap the financial bene- fits of HSAs. Pre-retirees Today's pre-retirees are sandwiched between their parents and grown chil- dren, and many times they must pro- vide for all three generations. An HSA Because love is not enough All parents love their children; but it takes more than love to keep a fam- ily strong. The DREAM for Kids Circle of Parents program is utilizing the Love Is Not Enough philosophy which uses six core messages to help parents meet the challenges of raising a family: • Be Strong and flexible • Parents need friends • Being a great parent is part nat- ural and part learned • We all need help sometimes • Parents need to help their chil- dren communicate • Give your children the love and respect they need These messages are backed up with concrete examples of how par- ents have solved problems, gotten help, and worked hard to make sure their children are safe and their fami- lies are strong. Having children is very rewarding, but being a parent isn't easy. The truth is, parenting is complicated and takes a lot of emo- tional and psychological energy! Join the FREE Circle of Parents "Parent Caf6 " the first two Mondays of each month from 5:30-6:30 p.m. at the Ortonville School from November through May to explore these six messages that will help you have safe children and a strong family. You will also enjoy a free meal for yourself and your children as well as homework help and supervised play time for your children• There will also be a holiday party in December and a family picnic in May to con- clude the sessions. There is limited space available for the sessions so call Get Involved at 839-2111 or Cara at 273-2266 by October 25th to register your family! HOURS: Mon.-Fri. 8AM-6PM; Sat. 8AM-5:30PM ORTONMILLE, MN PHONE (320) 839-2653 i::::;ii?:::::::? :i ::.:  :: :: :: :: :: :::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::: ;?:::::::::::;i/....:/:!i::::::::!:!!!;!!iif:::?:.:;:;:id:i:::i:. I Steaks, Roasts, Hamburger Pork Chops & Roasts 25 LB. BEEF BUNDLE 20 LB. PORK BUNDLE $79.95 $39.95 Per Lb, (,, 1[]1[]} Locally Grown Pork- Per Lb.HALF A HOG ..................... -'O DELl HAM ........................ ,.€,...- .," Per Lb. Hamburger Patties ......... $2.99 Looally Grown Beef- Per Lb.QuARTERS & SIDES...I'= .ODo" Per Lb. SEASONED PORK SAUSAGE .............................................. $1.99 Tuesday, Oct. 19,2010 00INDEPENDENT Page 11