Columbus business owners receive award for entrepreneurial spirit

With dreams of becoming successful entrepreneurs, Eduardo and Mary Rosa Morales opened their photography business, Venemex Productions, in Columbus, Nebraska, in 2008.

A year later, they discovered their business could benefit from training and guidance from the Center for Rural Affairs’ Rural Enterprise Assistance Project (REAP). Through years of hard work, commitment to their business, and some help along the way, their entrepreneurial dreams have come true, and the business owners are being recognized for their dedication.

Conservation program allows Iowa farmer to make ‘practical changes’ to improve his operation

Like many farmers, Dan Taylor of Dallas County, Iowa, is adjusting to the new reality under coronavirus. Thankfully, his family has not been touched by the virus, and he is moving forward with planting and conservation practices he had planned for this year.

It’s a routine he’s been doing every spring since graduating from high school in 1978 and going right to work after renting 80 acres of land.

He’s been farming ever since, about 9 miles from the farm he grew up on.

Solar energy shines light on innovative rural development strategy

Across Iowa, solar is in the midst of an unprecedented industry boom. Installed solar energy has grown rapidly from two megawatts in 2012 to about 115 megawatts today, according to the Energy Information Administration. Meanwhile, there are several hundred megawatts worth of solar projects being considered by the Iowa Utilities Board.


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