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MCCOOK CENTRAL’S WINBERG AWARDED 2018 NATIONAL LAND AND RANGE CHAMPION

5

Wessington Springs 4-H named National Range

JUDGING CHAMPIONS 8 Agtegra moves ahead after merger 12

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INSIDE THIS ISSUE On the cover

MCCOOK CENTRAL’S WINBERG

2018 National Land and Range Champion 5

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Features

McCook central’s Winberg awarded 2018

National Land and Range champion

From rodeo arena to silver screen

Wessington Springs won a team

National FFA award

Agtegra moves ahead after merger

5 6

8

Editor L U K E H AG EN Advertising Director LO R I E H A N S EN

South Dakota Farm & Ranch is a monthly agricultural publication dedicated to informing South Dakota area farmers and ranchers about current topics, news and the future of agriculture. This publication fits the niche of our unique farmers and ranchers of South Dakota, and the diverseness we have in our state. Although the Missouri River divides our state, we are all South Dakotans and thank the land for supporting us each and every day. You, our readers, may be livestock ranchers, or row crop farmers, and everywhere in between, however, we all have a common goal in mind. We feed and support the growing population and want the next generation to find that same love, dedication and support that agriculture can offer. To subscribe to this FREE publication, contact South Dakota Farm & Ranch.

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SDDA offers weed-free forage certification Hay producers can add value to their product by having it certified noxious weed-free forage through the South Dakota Department of Agriculture (SDDA). “This is a win-win situation. A farmer can get a better price for their forage and it helps prevent the spread of noxious weeds,” said Ron Moehring, state weed supervisor and program specialist for the weed-free forage program. The certification program is the first step to preventing the spread of new noxious weeds into forests and natural areas. Straw used in soil erosion reclamation projects or animal

bedding must also be free of noxious weeds. “I’m selling my hay at a higher price, $3 to $4 a bale more,” said Travis Ismay of Vale. “I didn’t have to treat my fields much differently than I had been doing. I just had to have the inspector come out and certify the field before I cut the hay.” Cost of certification is $250 for the first acre and $2 an acre for the rest of the field that is inspected. A request for certification needs to be made to the SDDA 10 days prior to expected harvest date. The crop will be certified using the NAISMA Weed

Free Forage list and the South Dakota Noxious Weed list. A field can still be certified weed free if listed weeds are present in the field, however those weeds cannot seed before harvest takes place. “Once the inspector arrives at the field, they must walk the perimeter of the field in question, then crisscross or zigzag through the field by coming in at one point (or side) and leaving at a different point, looking for any of the designated weeds. In addition, a buffer area on the perimeter must also be weed-free, as well as hay storage areas. A certificate of inspection is completed and sent to

the producer. Once a field is certified, the producer has a designated time period to harvest the crop. If the crop isn’t harvested within the time frame, the field must be re-certified to verify no seeds have formed. The producer will identify the inspected forage by a special tag available through SDDA,” Moehring said. For more information about South Dakota weed-free forage program visit https://sdda.sd.gov/ag-services/weed-and-pest-control/weedfree-forage/ or contact Moehring at ron.moehring@state.sd.us or 605.773.3796. — Source: South Dakota Department of Agriculture

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MCCOOK CENTRAL’S WINBERG AWARDED 2018 NATIONAL LAND AND RANGE CHAMPION

McCook Central sophomore and FFA member Katelyn Winberg recently was named National Champion in the the National Homesite Land judging competition in Oklahoma City in the first part of May. Matt Gade / Republic

Family tradition, leadership and success By Sam Fosness The Daily Republic he rich history of success within McCook Central’s FFA and 4-H chapter has produced a national champion for the first time in school history, as sophomore Katelyn Winberg was awarded first place at the National Land and Range Judging Contest last week. Roughly 900 FFA and 4-H students competed in the 67th annual National Land and Range Judging Contest hosted by the Oklahoma Association of Conservation Districts (OACD) on May 1-3, in Oklahoma City. Although Winberg’s roots in FFA and 4-H date all the way back to her grandfather’s history of success in the Chester area chapter, Winberg said it wasn’t until seventh grade that she began her journey after taking a class that inspired her to join McCook’s chapter. “While I was in middle school, I looked up to great role models that were representing McCook high school’s FFA chapter and was inspired to continue my journey,” Winberg said. “I wanted to be like them.”

T

Just one year into competing in 4-H and FFA, Winberg said she qualified to go to Nationals for agriscience in eighth grade. “Qualifying for Nationals was my first big achievement,” she said.

Leadership and success

Winberg’s national championship comes off the heels of a first-place finish in nursery landscape at the South Dakota State FFA Convention in Brookings on April 15-17. “Right after we got back from state convention, Mr. Rieckman had me and other team members practice soil, slopes and textures every single day,” she said. The long history of McCook’s 4-H and FFA success lies largely within the leadership of Terry Rieckman, McCook’s FFA adviser and agriculture teacher, who is currently in his 34th year. “Alicia Peterson, our extension person at the courthouse, is a former student who works hand-in-hand with me on a lot of things throughout my time in McCook,” Rieckman said. “Whether we’re taking kids to range land and soil days every summer, we

work together really well.” Rieckman largely credits National Resource Conservation Services soil scientist Lance Howe for succeeding at the national level. “Lance has taught me a lot of tips and pointers to give us the edge in succeeding and competing at the national level,” Rieckman said. Rieckman said practicing and studying soil textures and slopes are vital components in order to compete at the national level. “Texture and slope are probably the two hardest things to determine, but if you can determine those two, you can be like Katelyn Winberg and get a perfect score,” he said. Although Winberg notched a perfect score to become the first national champion in McCook school history, she said the life lessons 4-H has taught her go beyond winning and losing. “It’s taught me you have to really push yourself and work hard if you want to earn something,” Winberg said.“It’s taught me you have to really push yourself and work hard if you want to earn something,” Winberg said.

MAY 2018 SOUTH DAKOTA FARM & RANCH 5


FROM RODEO ARENA TO SILVER SCREEN Cowboy’s injury in Fargo altered his life, inspired movie By Patrick Springer Forum News Service Fargo oncealed by his cowboy hat, the threeinch scar on Brady Jandreau’s head serves as a reminder of the day his professional rodeo career came to an abrupt end – the day he almost died. Jandreau was thrown from a bronco during a rodeo inside the Fargodome on April 1, 2016. His foot got caught in the stirrup, tethering him to the horse, which stepped on the right side of his head. Jandreau remained conscious throughout the ordeal. At first, those coming to his aid thought he’d suffered a neck injury. “It’s my head,” he told them. His head was bleeding internally. Eleven minutes later, Jandreau suffered a seizure while in the emergency room at Sanford Medical Center. Fortunately, a brain surgeon had just finished another operation, and Jandreau was rushed into surgery. Five days later he woke up with a plate in his skull. “They saved my life,” he said in a recent interview. Before regaining consciousness, his prognosis had been guarded. “They didn’t know if I was going to be dead or brain dead.” Jandreau woke up to the realization that his rodeo days were over. But he had no idea that it would turn out to be the beginning of something else. Upon waking in his hospital room, Jandreau immediately wanted to leave. “Hospitals and me don’t work well,” he said. “When I woke up, I basically demanded to be let loose.” Jandreau’s doctors wouldn’t release him, however, until he was able to wean himself from a breathing tube. Once that was accomplished, he still had obstacles to overcome. The vision in his left eye was bad. His speech was impaired. His balance was unsteady. He was on seizure medication, and he couldn’t hear in his left ear on the first day outside the hospital. “Things wouldn’t work well,” he said. The doctors told Jandreau, a 20-year-old who lives on the Pine Ridge Indian Reservation in southwest South Dakota, that he would have to severely restrict his physical activity while recuperating from the brain injury. During discharge, Jandreau was told not to lift more than 10 pounds or do anything as jarring as jog for the next six months. Anything more strenuous would risk damaging his bruised brain, with possibly catastrophic results. How was a cowboy, whose life was spent in a saddle, riding and roping, a life spent in rigorous opposition to sedentary pursuits, supposed to accomplish that and earn a living? Three years before his traumatic brain injury, Jandreau met someone whose background was

Brady Jandreau suffered a serious brain injury when he was bucked off a bronco at a professional rodeo in 2016 in Fargo. His story is the basis for the movie, “The Rider,” in which Jandreau and members of his family star. Jandreau trains horses on the Pine Ridge Indian Reservation in South Dakota. Special to The Forum

C

6 SOUTH DAKOTA FARM & RANCH MAY 2018

entirely foreign to his own. Yet they would form an unlikely professional association that would alter the trajectory of his life. The chance encounter with Chloé Zhao, a native of Beijing and a graduate of New York University film school, happened at an odd location – an Angus bull sale at Pine Ridge, where she was filming her low-budget debut movie, “Songs My Brothers Taught Me,” a story involving a Lakota Sioux brother and sister. Zhao was immediately struck by Jandreau, a wiry Lakota cowboy whose steely toughness is masked by an amiable nature. The director wanted to cast him in a future film project. But the right role didn’t come along until Jandreau’s rodeo accident. “She didn’t really have a story until this injury,” he said. Jandreau, whose entire life was horses and ranch work, was not even remotely connected to acting or filmmaking. Yet he was cast in the leading role of Zhao’s second film as Brady Blackburn, a bronco rider who suffered a serious brain injury in a rodeo and then was told by a doctor that a return to the saddle could prove fatal. “The Rider” opened earlier this year in limited release by Sony Pictures Classics. It will become more widely screened later this year. “The Rider” has earned critical acclaim and won 12 awards, including the top prize at the prestigious Cannes Film Festival. It also has changed Jandreau’s life. He has flown to Paris, New York, Los Angeles, Toronto, San Francisco, Austin, Texas and New Mexico to attend film festivals. It turns out there’s a movie circuit, not altogether different than the rodeo circuit, Jandreau said. But the journey from Pine Ridge to Cannes and beyond was anything but smooth or certain. Gradually – stubbornly – Jandreau reclaimed his life in the saddle. A big moment came just six weeks after his release from the hospital, when Jandreau got back on a horse. The feat was both momentous and entirely ordinary for someone who had a near-fatal brain injury after being thrown from a bronco. But he had been placed on a horse for the first time at 15 months, started riding in competition at the age of three and was training wild

horses by 12. What explains his rapid and seemingly miraculous recovery? “I think a lot of it had to do with the fact I wasn’t down very long,” Jandreau said. Horses were his physical and emotional therapy. In addition to the riding he did for the movie, Jandreau regularly rides horses to earn a living through his business, Jandreau Performance Horses in Rockyford, S.D., not far from scenic Badlands National Park. He raises and trains American quarter horses for all levels of riders. Juggling the two occupations was a challenge while he was still recuperating. He rose every morning at 5 a.m., went to work training horses from 6 a.m. to noon and then started filming at 1 p.m., working into the night and enduring bad headaches. “I was busy as hell,” he said. Riding a bronco or bull in a rodeo arena and acting for the screen are not as different as they might seem, Jandreau said. “They’re both very similar. You have to be all there in the moment. I was all there on camera.” As part of his preparation, Zhao showed Jandreau a few movies, including “The Wrestler” and several films starring Joaquin Phoenix. Jandreau estimates that 60 percent of “The Rider” is based on his life, with a few embellishments to adapt it to the screen. “It’s not a documentary,” he said. That doesn’t mean the movie lacks authenticity. Footage of Jandreau’s fateful bronco ride in Fargo, his last in the rodeo arena, appears in “The Rider.” The ride was captured on video by his wife, who shot it from the stands on her phone. Jandreau’s life as a horse trainer is not without its risks. Recently, he roped a colt that somehow managed to step on his face. “I’ve got a pretty skinned-up face,” he said, chuckling. In fact, he doesn’t see riding in the rodeo as being significantly more dangerous than his work as a horse trainer. Nothing is guaranteed when you get on a horse, especially one that is being broken. In training a horse, he doesn’t try to dominate the animal. He tries to build a bond with the horse. He can look a horse in the eye

COWBOY: Page 14


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Wessington Springs 4-H named National Range Judging champions By Sam Fosness The Daily Republic he Wessington Springs 4-H club shared first place as the national team champion with the Hico, Texas, FFA Chapter for homesite evaluation at the 67th National Land and Range Judging Contest in Oklahoma City. The contest featured more than 700 4-H and FFA students from roughly 30 states. Currently serving his 35th year as agriculture education instructor/FFA advisor, Craig Shryock said the achievement marks the sixth National Land and Range Judging title for the Wessington Springs 4-H club. Shryock said a group of veteran leaders guided

T

Qualifying last June was actually a challenge, because many of the teams competing at nationals had qualifiers several weeks prior to the contest, which gave them an advantage as we hadn’t competed since last June. Everything was fresh in the other teams’ minds.

Wessington Springs 4-H throughout the successful year. Logan Wolter, Dalton Howe, Keah Munsen and Coy Fastnacht represent the senior class of leaders Shryock credits. “Going out to the practice sites at 8 a.m. that our advisers set up really helps with preparing for state and national contests,” Wolter said. “Identifying plants and range landscape during the day and doing the paperwork assignments at night is also a big part of preparation.” At the national contest, range teams identify plants, assess forage potential at ecological sites and understand range landscape.

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Submitted photo

Range team from left: David Ollila SDSU Extension, Coy Fastnacht, Rylie Stevens, Logan Wolter, Dalton Howe.

From Page 8

After a first place finish at the 34th Annual South Dakota Rangeland Days and 13th Annual Soils Days on June 20-21 of last year, Wessington Springs 4-H club earned itself a trip to nationals. “Qualifying last June was actually a challenge, because many of the teams competing at nationals had

qualifiers several weeks prior to the contest, which gave them an advantage as we hadn’t competed since last June,” Wolter said. “Everything was fresh in the other teams’ minds.” Wolter said the plants and ecosystems are vastly different in Oklahoma City compared to South Dakota’s, which added another significant challenge to the contest.

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This tradition began more than 40 years ago and recognizes beef production as one of South Dakota’s largest economic sectors. Because they are so important to the state’s well-being, South Dakota cattlemen and women take great care in their production practices.

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Mr. Shryock has inspired us to succeed and maintain our program throughout the years, and the wall covered with plaques behind us speaks for itself. KEAH MUNSEN

WESSINGTON From Page 9

The long history of success within Wessington Springs 4-H and FFA programs has inspired current students to continue the legacy. Munsen said she’s always looked up to the role models that represented Wessington Springs 4-H and FFA

clubs throughout her entire life. Although Munsen recognizes the past students as role models, she looks to Shryock as the most inspirational mentor in her 4-H and FFA career. “Mr. Shryock has inspired us to succeed and maintain our program throughout the years, and the wall covered with plaques behind us speaks for itself,” Munsen said.

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MAY 2018 SOUTH DAKOTA FARM & RANCH 11


Agtegra moves ahead after merger By Marcus Traxler South Dakota Farm & Ranch Aberdeen o far, it’s been a smooth start for Agtegra Cooperative. The newly formed cooperative created by merging the former South Dakota Wheat Growers and North Central Farmers Elevator co-ops has been up and running for three months. And aside from the rebranding behind a new name and logo, building a viable business has been hard work but rewarding, Agtegra Executive Vice President for Grain Mike Nickolas said. “We knew that the impact of merging and coming together was

S

12 SOUTH DAKOTA FARM & RANCH MAY 2018

going to be big, and I don’t think we realized just how big,” Nickolas said. “We did see that in the first three months.” Nickolas said Agtegra purchased 85 million bushels of grain in the three-month span from February to April and shipped more than 60 million bushels. “It was just tremendous,” said Nickolas, noting the new company benefited from a small increase in prices in February and dry weather in Argentina. Agtegra benefited from good corn and soybean exports in the Pacific Northwest, as well. “We’ve entered a new era, for sure,” Nickolas said. “This could

keep extending going forward.” The two former co-ops approached a plan to merge in 2015 but that was turned down by the member-owners of Wheat Growers and North Central. In September 2017, the member-owners voted in favor of the merger, with 58 percent of North Central members and 63 percent of Wheat Growers backing the plan. In the merger effort, advocates had argued that the possible co-op would save $12.7 million annually over the first four years of what would become Agtegra.

AGTEGRA: Page 14

Co-op shows successful start in early months under new name

New Agtegra Cooperative signage is shown at the former Wheat Growers location in Woonsocket. Following the merger with North Central Farmers Elevator, the new co-op has 60 locations in both North Dakota and South Dakota. Marcus Traxler / Republic


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MAY 2018 SOUTH DAKOTA FARM & RANCH 13


AGTEGRA

Nickolas, who was the former CEO for North Central, said that with a large footprint that includes 60 locations in northern and central South Dakota and southern North Dakota, there have been benefits to bringing the co-ops together. Agtegra has 6,770 member-owners and about 20,000 equity holders in the company. “Some of the efficiencies that we felt could be possible have been there,” he said. “When you’re transferring grain to a rail line, there’s going to be some savings by being able to go to the closest site … and moving trains to the facility that is most advantageous. It’s allowed us to be more price competitive.” Nickolas admitted the grain division has had an easier time making the adjustment to Agtegra, mainly because there are fewer administrative hurdles. “In the long term, it will be a benefit for our member owners,” he said. “Instead of duplicating efforts, we’re able to focus more of our energy into items such as precision agriculture and more innovation.” Prior to the official merger on Feb. 1, Wheat Growers purchased a 40,000-ton dry fertilizer plant in Kimball previously owned by Gavilon. (Gavilon continues to own the nearby 2.2 million-bushel grain facility). The Kimball site became the largest of seven fertilizer hubs in the Agtegra system. “The Kimball fertilizer plant has three times the storage capacity as our newest plant in Kennebec,” Agtegra Chief Operating Officer John Husk said at the time of the announcement. “With this added storage volume and efficient loading capabilities, we can provide our customers seamless delivery of costeffective product for their operations.” The Kimball plant includes access to a 110-car unit loop-track, plus high-speed automated fertilizer loadout and storage capabilities. “It’s one of the larger plants we have, and it’s been very successful in allowing us to deliver to other locations,” Nickolas said. “And at the same time, it’s a good supply in that area and allows us to go from the plant to the farmers’ fields. The supply was needed there.”

COWBOY From Page 6

and have a conversation. “It’s like I have a spiritual connection with them,” he said. His appearance in an

acclaimed movie, although a small independent film, has helped him financially, enabling him to beef-up his horse business. “It helped a lot,” he said of money from “The Rider.” After his injury, “I was completely broke.” Now, he added, “We’ve got

14 SOUTH DAKOTA FARM & RANCH MAY 2018

From Page 12

a lot of horses.” He enjoyed acting, and even hired a manager during his most recent trip to Los Angeles. “I could probably go ride broncs now,” he said, his voice wistful. “I feel like that’s what God put me here to do – be a horseman.”

When you’re transferring grain to a rail line, there’s going to be some savings by being able to go to the closest site … and moving trains to the facility that is most advantageous. It has allowed us to be more price competitive. MIKE NICKOLAS, Agtegra Executive Vice President for Grain

He misses riding in the rodeo. “I think about it every day,” he said. “I loved it so much.” He enjoyed the challenge of taking on ornery bulls and broncos. In fact, Jandreau said, he’s been thinking of riding one of the bulls raised by his father-

in-law. “I feed those bulls every day, so I know them,” he said. It’s a risk, but not one he considers foolhardy. Still, he will take precautions. “I’ll be wearing a helmet,” he said. Readers can reach Forum reporter Patrick Springer at (701) 241-5522


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LEGACY RICH. FUTURE FOCUSED. FOR GENERATIONS TO COME. Agtegra Cooperative serves members with innovation and integrity, knowing that doing the right thing is what drives success today, tomorrow and into the future. We’re here to provide the products, services and support that matter to your operation.

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16 SOUTH DAKOTA FARM & RANCH MAY 2018

South Dakota Farm & Ranch May 2018  

May 2018 The Daily Republic

South Dakota Farm & Ranch May 2018  

May 2018 The Daily Republic

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