As you may be aware, Extension Brown County along with the UW-Madison community have been keeping a close eye on developments around the novel coronavirus COVID-19.  All Extension in-person activities at least through May 3rd are postponed or cancelled. 
 
Although we are physically distancing, we hope to connect with the public now more than ever with the power of the internet and social media.  Our educators are working hard to bring content virtually to your home.  Our Facebook pages are being populated daily with ideas to keep your mind and body healthy and to help us stay connected with eachother as a community.  Please use the links below to like our Facebook pages.

Extension Brown County
Extension Brown County 4-H Positive Youth Development
Extension Brown County Horticulture
Extension Brown County Agriculture
Brown County Community Gardens Program
FoodWIse Extension Brown County

If you do not want to connect with Facebook, please use the links below to see our news section for each department.  We have the same content that is being shared on Facebook here.

General Extension News
4-H Positive Youth Development News
Agriculture News
Horticulture News

Social distancing does not mean social disconnect.  Call, email, message, comment, hashtag - stay active and stay connected!

Extension Brown County
920-391-4610
extension@browncountywi.gov
www.browncountyextension.org

Mar. 27, 2020

Providing child care to the essential workforce is critical to flattening the curve of COVID-19 in Wisconsin. To meet this need, Governor Evers created the Child Care for Essential Workers Taskforce.  Click here for an informational flyer on the taskforce.  Led by the Department of Children and Families (DCF), the taskforce is working with the Early Childhood Association (WECA) and Supporting Families Together Association (SFTA) to connect essential workforce families in need of child care with locally available child care resources.

The Department of Children and Families (DCF) understands that certain families need continued child care during the COVID-19 pandemic. To ensure the safety of families and child care setting staff, click here to view a list of tips for parents to help reduce the spread of COVID-19.
       
DCF is excited to launch two new tools to help connect essential workforce families to local, safe child care. Healthcare workers and essential employees are now able to submit a request for care by clicking here through the department’s updated Child Care Finder or proactively view up-to-date availability across the state using the department’s new child care map by clicking here.

More information for providers, essential workers and families can be found on the DCF COVID-19 Child Care webpage at https://dcf.wisconsin.gov/covid-19/childcare

Mar. 31, 2020

Keep your brain busy during COVID-19.  Click here to download a Groundwater Crossword Puzzle.  Learn terms related to groundwater and be sure to check out the fact sheet on the second page that details the new terms you learned. 

Mar. 31, 2020
You hate to let a temporary financial setback impact your good standing with your creditors and lower your credit score for years to come. If you find that money is tight and you won't be able to keep up with bills, take action right away. 

Find the full article here.
Mar. 31, 2020
There is little doubt that the Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic is affecting every aspect of our lives—from virtual classrooms to telecommuting to early restaurant closing times to outright quarantines. Observing public health measures and reducing exposure to the virus are required to slow the spread of this disease. No one knows how long these virus safety measures will need to stay in place, but it presents a perfect time to protect and improve your health while practicing social distancing. Healthy eating is especially important for keeping your immune system in top condition. Click here for some steps you can take to eat healthy in the times of COVID.
Mar. 31, 2020
With 40 U.S. states now closing public schools to slow the spread of the COVID-19 virus, parents have had little to no time to plan for keeping their children at home 24/7. Suddenly, and in some cases overnight, families are figuring out how to live, learn and work - together and separately - all under one roof. This article offers tips for learning and working from home! 

What do we tell children in times of uncertainty like these? There are no easy answers but Travis Wright, an associate professor of counseling psychology at the School of Education at UW-Madison, offers some suggestions in this article.
Mar. 31, 2020

The coronavirus, also known as COVID-19, is impacting households, communities, and businesses. A new national survey shows that 1 in 5 households in the US have already had their income cut or stopped altogether. Click here for financial resources to help you through COVID-19. 

Mar. 30, 2020

Coronavirus is making life stressful for everyone. If you're in isolation at home with kids, you're probably hearing the phrase "I'm bored" a lot!
 
Beat the boredom by trying out this weeks NEW featured resource:
Kid-friendly safe recipes!
 
Or try engaging your kids with one of these fun activities:
Scrub Club – a cartoon game about handwashing with a fun song
Coloring Placemats – free printable placemats with activities
Smart Kids Fight BAC! – a classic cartoon video about food safety

Mar. 30, 2020

Extension has resources available at your fingertips to help families throughout these trying times.  Parenting tips, fun activities, how to connect with eachother and much more.  Click here to utilize these resources

Mar. 30, 2020

Media Contact:
Margaret Franchino
Brown County Community Gardens Program
margaret.franchino@browncountywi.gov

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Brown County Community Gardens Program Registration Open to Public

Green Bay, WI—April 7—The Brown County Community Gardens Program is offering garden plot registration online and by phone beginning 8 a.m. Wednesday, April 15. Community members can submit an application to rent a plot at browncountycommunitygardens.org or by calling 920-391-4660. Plots will be reserved on a first-come, first-served basis, and include a nominal fee.

The program offers nearly 400 rental community garden plots at 12 locations throughout Brown County. Community members rent plots for $10 to $45 for the growing season, and use the space to grow their own fresh fruits and vegetables. The program provides the land and water and renters can plant, care for, and harvest their own plots.

In addition to increased access to fresh produce, participants report mental and physical health benefits and increased community connections, and also help to promote environmental sustainability, among other benefits. Gardeners, including many immigrants and refugees, also use their plots as a way to maintain cultural traditions and access diverse foods not readily available at grocery stores.

Having access to gardening space can also be especially beneficial given the COVID-19 health crisis. "With the added stress we are going through now, I can't wait to get into my garden knowing how much it helps my mental health and is something healthy to do for my family," says gardener Beth Stockbridge.

In the past, garden plot registration has been conducted by in-person events. The process has gone online, and is available by phone due to the Stay At Home order issued by Gov. Tony Evers.

"It is restorative to get outside, play in the dirt, and witness the miracle of going from a tiny seed to food you can provide for your family. Even if you have no experience, we old hands are happy to share the excitement of gardening," says longtime gardener and board member Dee Ann Sanders.

The Community Gardens Program is jointly funded by Brown County and the City of Green Bay and is also made possible by countless community partners and supporters.

The application form will be available in Spanish and English at browncountycommunitygardens.org. Interpreters are available by appointment for phone registration. For more information about the Community Gardens Program, please visit browncountycommunitygardens.org.

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Mar. 25, 2020

Extension Brown County will be providing a basic grant proposal workshop online on April 23, 2020, from 9:00-11:30am.  This workshop will equip you with the basic skills of grant writing, an increasingly essential method for raising money to fund projects or programs for your organization.  Discover the how and where to look for funding to match your organization’s needs.  Find out about 990 Forms, where to find them, and what can they tell you to help you narrow your search for a grant that would meet your project need.  Find out where there are grant libraries and why you would visit them.  Learn tips on writing a grant proposals.  The workshop will cover the components of a grant proposal.   The workshop will look at how a needs assessment, program planning, and evaluation fit into a proposal format.  Look at some basic strategies for determining budget requests and working with funding agencies.  Participants will leave with places to look for grants and a draft outline for a grant proposal.  

For more information, contact Brown County Extension Community Development Educator Patrick Nehring at patrick.nehring@wisc.edu or (920) 764-1915.  Click here to register.

Mar. 17, 2020
March 2020 Happenings has upcoming events, local weather watch signup, spring Horticulture classes and news from Community Gardens and FoodWIse. Click here to view the full newsletter!
Mar. 13, 2020
How heavy was the rainfall overnight? How much snow fell during the latest snowstorm? How bad is the drought this year? Join over 500 fellow volunteers across Wisconsin who report precipitation online to ensure measurements of snow, rain and hail is available for your area.

The Community Collaborative Rain, Hail and Snow Network or CoCoRaHS is recruiting volunteer weather observers to help the National Weather Service and others determine the impact and severity of each storm.

Everyone can participate – young, old, and in-between. The only requirements are an enthusiasm for watching and reporting weather conditions and a desire to learn more about how weather can impact our lives.

All you need to do is sign-up, attend an online training, and then you are ready to start measuring weather in your own backyard. Volunteers can measure:
  • snow using a yardstick or homemade snowboard
  • rainfall and the water content of snow using a 4” diameter rain gauge
  • hail using a ruler or homemade hail pad
  • ice accretion using a ruler
You’ll be amazed at what you learn as you become more aware of the variable weather that impacts you, your neighbors, your state and our entire country. Plus, you’ll help ground truth weather events, providing valuable information for improving weather forecasting models. The data you provide will help shape forecasts of river stages and flood levels on local rivers and can help inform National Weather Service thunderstorm or flash flood warnings just to name a few examples.

Sunday, March 1, 2020 marked the beginning of CoCoRaHS March Madness campaign. The campaign is a nationwide competition between states to see who can recruit the most volunteer weather observers. Last year, Wisconsin ranked sixth out of all 50 states and this year we are aiming to increase our ranking and beat our neighbors in the Gopher State!

Join your fellow Wisconsinites who report rainfall, snow fall and weather facts. Register today and help us beat Minnesota in this year’s CoCoRaHS March Madness.

You can find information and register here!
Mar. 3, 2020
January 2020 Happenings has an introduction to new staff; a list of the Horticulture Classes;  a link to purchase Taste of WI tickets, and more!  Click to view.
Jan. 3, 2020
Happy Valley 4-H club coordinated a countywide effort to raise money for the Ronald McDonald House by collecting pop tabs. Beginning in the spring of 2019, the club began a drive for all Brown County 4-H clubs to collect the small tabs from aluminum cans. Clubs brought their pop tabs to the Brown County STEM Innovation Center for a weigh-in on Saturday, October 5th.

Brown County 4-H clubs and groups together raised nearly 600 pounds of aluminum tabs by collecting at various events and locations throughout Brown County. Through additional partner-ships and charitable contributions from local organizations, Hap-py Valley 4-H club will present a donation of more than 700,000 aluminum tabs as well as additional cash donations to the Ronald McDonald House of Eastern Wisconsin. They’re not stop-ping there.
“Our vision is to be able to continue the program each year and hopefully grow and expand to include everyone, whether you collect handful of pop tabs or hundreds of pounds,” said club leader Nicki Van Deurzen.

Anyone interested in helping Brown County 4-H to collect pop tabs can contact bc4hpoptabs@gmail.com.
Nov. 21, 2019
Master Gardener Volunteers (N.E.W. Master Gardeners) from the Locktender's House Native Planting Project in De Pere were presented with an award by the De Pere Beautification Committee at the De Pere City Council meeting. Attached is a picture of the volunteers along with De Pere Mayor, Mike Walsh, after receiving the award.
Nov. 21, 2019
Brown County Executive Troy Streckenbach, along with officials representing the Brown County STEM Innovation Center partners, officially celebrated the opening of the 63,730 square foot facility on Thursday.

“This day represents the realization of my long-term vision to secure our region’s manufacturing future,” says Streckenbach. “The Brown County STEM Innovation Center will help create long-term, family-supporting jobs in order to achieve improved economic development for years to come, while ensuring all our students have opportunities to become tomorrow’s innovators.”

The Brown County STEM Innovation Center will serve as the home of the University of Wisconsin-Green Bay’s Richard J. Resch School of Engineering, which will address Northeast Wisconsin’s educational training and skills gap of qualified employees to support manufacturing growth and entrepreneurship. Additionally, the space will enable the co-location of The Einstein Project, Extension Brown County and Brown County’s Land and Water Conservation departments.
Nov. 5, 2019