Heart disease is the leading cause of death for both men and women, but it is preventable and controllable Here are some tips:

*: Prevent heart disease by making healthy choices and managing any medical conditions you may have.

* Eat a healthy diet. Choose healthful meals and snack options like fresh fruits and vegetables. Eating foods high in fiber can help prevent high cholesterol. Limiting salt or sodium in your diet also can lower your blood pressure.

* Maintain a healthy weight. Being overweight or obese increases the risk of heart disease. Physical activity helps you maintain a healthy weight and lower cholesterol and blood pressure. Practice moderate-intensity exercise at least 30 minutes most days of the week.

* Monitor your blood pressure. High blood pressure often has no symptoms. Have it checked on a regular basis and keep track of it. Monitor your blood pressure at home, at a pharmacy or at a doctor's office.

* Don't smoke. Cigarette smoking greatly increases the risk of heart disease. There are many methods to help you quit.

* Limit alcohol use. Alcohol can increase your blood pressure.

* Have your cholesterol checked. Your health care provider should test your cholesterol levels with a simple blood test.

* Manage your diabetes. If you have diabetes, monitor your blood sugar levels closely, and follow your treatment.

* Take the medications to treat high blood pressure, high cholesterol or diabetes faithfully. Ask questions if you don't understand something.

Any questions or concerns, call LĂ©hisa de Fornoza at 272-3670 or email

Shooting workshop

The dates for the 2014 Kansas 4-H Shooting Sports Instructor Certification Workshop are March 28 to 30 at the Rock Springs 4-H Center.

All disciplines having at least five people will be offered (including hunting skills). The hunting skills discipline teaches participants about the habits and habitat preferences of game species, and about effective methods for hunting them (i.e. calling, tracking, animal behaviors, etc.). This is not hunter education as taught by Wildlife and Parks.

The instructor workshop begins with check-in at the Johnson Administration Building from 4 to 5:30 p.m. Friday, followed by supper at 6 p.m. in Williams Dining Hall and concludes at approximately 3 p.m. Sunday afternoon. Only full-time participants will be allowed. The workshop cost covers lodging, refreshment breaks, project material handouts and meals from Friday dinner through Sunday lunch. Shotgun discipline will need to pay extra for shells. Bring your own bedding, towels and personal items.

Prospective participants should have a minimum level of experience in the discipline and be recommended by the local Extension unit i.e. agent/coordinator. They should have an interest in 4-H and youth development with prior experience at the local level including V.I.P. training. Certified instructors will commit time.

Registration deadline is Saturday. For concerned participants, arrangements with the Finney County Extension Office can be made for registration cost. Interested individuals need to direct inquiries and questions to Barbara Addison at 272-3670 or

4-H project day

A 4-H Space Tech Project Day will be offered for youth, parents and 4-H project leaders who want to learn more about the 4-H Space Tech project. The event will be 9:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. March 22 at Albertson Hall, Fort Hays State University, in Hays.

The experience concentrates on the core issues of astronomy, robotics, rockerty, and GPS/GIS (Geospatial Global Positioning and Geographic Information System. This workshop will help young people and adults learn how to put skills to work in these areas and spark interest in future career opportunities.

Registration is due March 10 with fee. For inquiries and questions, call Barbara Addison at 272-3670 or email

Upcoming events

* March 14: 4-H/FFA Beef Tagging at the Finney County Fairgrounds

* March 22: Fort Hays Annual Judging Contest for 4-H and FFA youth. Topics include crops, entomology, horticulture, life skills, livestock and photography.

Conservation Awards

Since 1945, the Finney County Conservation District has awarded farmers, ranchers and landowners with Conservation Awards. The purpose of this program is to stimulate a greater interest in the conservation of the agricultural resources of Kansas by recognizing those farmers and landowners who have made outstanding progress in establishing soil and water conservation on their farms.

Kansas State Research and Extension joins with the Kansas Bankers Association in sponsoring and promoting the recognition of farmers, ranchers and landowners who have completed projects designed to improve environmental quality or conserve natural resources. Each year, more than 200 Kansas producers and landowners are recognized through this program in counties across the state.

Finney County Conservation District recognizes two families at their 67th Annual Meeting. This year's recipients of the 2013 Kansas Bankers Award are Archie and Susie Gooden and Rodney and Sharen McMillan.

The Goodens farm north of Garden City with Archie's son, Josh. Their care for the land and its natural resources is demonstrated by the conservation practices and technological advances they include in their farming operation. The Goodens primarily use a wheat/sorghum/fallow rotation with minimum till and no till in their operation. They have participated in the Environmental Quality Incentive Program to transition to no till. The Goodens also have participated in the Conservation Security and Stewardship Program carrying out enhancements that improve soil quality, air quality and water conservation. The establishment of native grasses, through the Conservation Reserve Program and windbreaks has added diversity to their operation.

The McMillians began farming in the 1980s in southern Finney County. Raised on a farm, Rodney learned first-hand the importance of caring for the land. The McMillans use a wheat/sorghum/fallow rotation in a no-till system. They utilized the Environmental Quality Incentive Program to help make a transition to no-till. The McMillans also participated in the Conservation Stewardship Program carrying out enhancements that improve air quality, as well as support energy conservation. Rodney's and Sharen's use of conservation practices and advanced technologies demonstrates a commitment to the future of their farming operation and to their children.

Upcoming meetings

Mark your calendars for the following educational meetings, which will be held at 7 p.m. in the Grandstand Meeting Room at Finney County Fairgrounds.

* March 10: "How Does Your Garden Grow: Learn Vegetable and Fruit Skills"

* March 20: "Tips for Growing Trees Successfully"

* April 3: "Healthy Yards and Communities"

* April 8: "Growing Annual and Perennial Flowers"

If you have any questions about Conservation Awards or any other concerns, call David Coltrain at 272-3670 or email