OUR VIEW: Week in review: the best, worstA look back at the week that was, from burn bans to the drought to Century Farms.
HISSES to news that drought conditions have worsened throughout the state in the past week. Most areas are more than 4 inches below their average for rainfall, including the Mitchell region. Thursday, the U.S. Drought Monitor Map was released, showing that 90 percent of the state is in moderate to severe drought. That was up from 77 percent the week before, and it’s just the latest depressing drought-related news to cross our desk.
CHEERS to the memorial funds that have been created in the name of former South Dakota Gov. Bill Janklow. According to The Associated Press, the Janklow Archival Fund will support the processing of Janklow’s public and personal papers, and the Janklow Scholarship Fund will support the studies of students dedicated to public service in South Dakota. Janklow, who died in January, was an exceptional governor who served four terms. To honor him in this way at his alma mater is fitting.
CHEERS to the Century Farms program, which is again seeking entries. Families that have enjoyed 100 to 125 years on the farm or ranch can be honored during the South Dakota State Fair Aug. 30. A farm or ranch is eligible for Century Farm recognition if at least 80 acres of original land has been continuously owned by the same family for at least 100 years. A Quasquicentennial Farm follows the same acreage requirements, but requires 125 years. Call 605-353-8052 for more information about this neat program.
CHEERS to the South Dakota all-star athletic games, which were held this month in Aberdeen. These games have been going on for more than two decades now, and to be included is a great honor for the athletes, their coaches and their schools. We know it’s hotter than heck this month, but we’re sure that the heat didn’t do much to dampen the spirits of the exceptional athletes who took part.
CHEERS to burn bans, being enacted by county commissions throughout South Dakota. Because conditions are so dry, commissioners in many counties — including Davison — are deciding that it’s just too risky to allow residents to burn things on their own, including campfires, fence lines, etc. It’s just too dry out there, and we suggest readers contact their local officials before trying to light any unnecessary fires. As of this writing, other counties in the region with burn bans are Bon Homme, Brule, Hanson, Hutchinson, Aurora, Gregory, Lyman, Tripp and McCook.