Senate Report: Local farms recognized for contributions to Minnesota’s agriculture industry

Published 8:45 pm Friday, July 21, 2023

Senate Report by Gene Dornink

Gene Dornink

Friends and neighbors,

Since 1979, the University of Minnesota Farm Family Recognition Program has honored farm families from each county for their meaningful contributions to the agriculture industry and their local communities. And recently, the University of Minnesota announced the 2023 Farm Families of the Year.

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In our community, the following family farms are recognized:

• Bill and Susie Rosenau Family – Faribault County Farm Family

• Aaron and Tammy Cech – Freeborn County Farm Family

• MRJ Farms of Waltham – Mower County Farm Family

• Ahrens Family – Steele County Farm Family

• Dan and Lara Zimmerli – Waseca County Farm Family

Congratulations to the local families recognized as 2023 Farm Families of the Year! Our community is so appreciative of your contributions to our agriculture industry.

Families will be recognized at Farmfest in Redwood County this year. The Farm Family of the Year Recognition Ceremony takes place on Thursday, Aug. 3, at 1:15 pm at the Wick Buildings Farmfest Center. If you plan on attending Farmfest, I invite you to stop by and congratulate them!

Additionally, the Minnesota Farm Bureau, in partnership with the Minnesota State Fair, announced the 2023 Century and Sesquicentennial Farms. This program recognizes farms that have been in continuous ownership by a family for at least 100 years (Century Farm) or at least 150 years (Sesquicentennial Farm). The farms must also be at least 50 acres in size and are currently involved in agricultural production.

In Senate District 23, the following farms have been recognized this year:

• Meyer-Tufte Farm in Kiester – Since 1870

• Yost Farm in Albert Lea – Since 1923

• Orville and Carol Ohm of Alden – Since 1913

• Miller Farms in Oakland – Since 1862

• The Miller Farm in Oakland – Since 1920

• W. Miller Farm in Oakland – Since 1920

• Jax Family Farm in Adams – Since 1906

• Johnson Family Farm in Ellendale – Since 1891

• Johnson Family Farm in Ellendale – Since 1899

• Sonnek Farm in Minnesota Lake – Since 1921

Thank you to each of the local farms for your decades of dedication to our community. Your hard work and perseverance in operating your farm is commendable.

Recipients receive an outdoor sign designating the farm as a “Century Farm” or “Sesquicentennial Farm” and a certificate signed by the governor of Minnesota and presidents of the Minnesota Farm Bureau and the Minnesota State Fair. Information on the farm recipients will be available at the Minnesota Farm Bureau exhibit during the State Fair.

Contact me

As always, please do not hesitate to contact me. Feel free to email me at or give me a call at 651-296-5240.

Gene Dornink, R-Brownsdale, is the District 23 senator.