• Livingston County Farm Exhibit

    Visit the Livingston County Farm Exhibit at the Fowlerville Family Fair, July 22-27, 2019

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    Ford $500 Bonus Cash Savings available to eligible members!

  • History of Farming in Livingston County Exhibit

    will be at the Fowlerville Family Fair - July 22-27, 2019. Ideas for the exhibit? Want to volunteer? Contact us today!

  • Planning for retirement?

    We are here to help! Contact our Medicare Plan Specialist, Deb Holmes at: [email protected]

  • Agriculture Awareness Day

    Thursday, May 30, 2019 - Fowlerville Family Fairgrounds - Volunteers needed to help educate area 3rd grade students!

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Top Story

Deb Holmes

Livingston County Farm Bureau will be holding their Annual Meeting on Wednesday, September 9, 2020, at the Fowlerville Family Fairgrounds, 8800 W Grand River in Fowlerville.   Registration will begin at 6:00pm with dinner being served at 6:30pm.    This event will be held outside at the Bingo Pavilion at the north end of the fairgrounds, near the historical village.

Social distancing will be practiced in that picnic tables will be spaced appropriately for diners or if attendees prefer, parking will be adjacent to the pavilion so that you may dine in your vehicle.  Dinner will consist of pulled pork, cheesy potatoes, Cole slaw and a cookie.  Bottled water will be provided for refreshment.

Horseshoes and corn hole games will be set up.  There will be some appropriate games for children that will allow for social distancing and safe play.

In order to accomplish the business of the Annual Meeting, a business meeting will be held following dinner to approve the 2019 Annual Meeting Minutes, approve the financial statements as of August 31, 2019,  to elect new directors and to review policy to be forwarded for consideration to Michigan Farm Bureau.  If you are unable to attend the meeting in person, the business materials will be made available for email as of September 2, 2020.  A ballot is also being prepared so that you may submit a vote via email.  To request these materials, please email [email protected] .  Completed ballots would need to be emailed by 4:00pm to [email protected] on September 9th to be counted in that evenings vote.

The LCFB Board of Directors thanks each of you for being a member in our organization.  We will do everything possible to make sure that the County Annual Meeting is a safe and family friendly event.  Our hope is that you will attend either in person or by reviewing the Annual Meeting materials and by submitting a ballot via email.  2020 has been a challenging year and we hope that our meeting will give members an enjoyable evening out at the fair.

Livingston County Farm Bureau will hold their Annual Meeting on September 9th. Materials will be made available via email if you cannot attend in person

Livingston County Farm Bureau News

Deb Holmes

Livingston County Farm Bureau will be holding their Annual Meeting on Wednesday, September 9, 2020, at the Fowlerville Family Fairgrounds, 8800 W Grand River in Fowlerville.   Registration will begin at 6:00pm with dinner being served at 6:30pm.    This event will be held outside at the Bingo Pavilion at the north end of the fairgrounds, near the historical village.

Social distancing will be practiced in that picnic tables will be spaced appropriately for diners or if attendees prefer, parking will be adjacent to the pavilion so that you may dine in your vehicle.  Dinner will consist of pulled pork, cheesy potatoes, Cole slaw and a cookie.  Bottled water will be provided for refreshment.

Horseshoes and corn hole games will be set up.  There will be some appropriate games for children that will allow for social distancing and safe play.

In order to accomplish the business of the Annual Meeting, a business meeting will be held following dinner to approve the 2019 Annual Meeting Minutes, approve the financial statements as of August 31, 2019,  to elect new directors and to review policy to be forwarded for consideration to Michigan Farm Bureau.  If you are unable to attend the meeting in person, the business materials will be made available for email as of September 2, 2020.  A ballot is also being prepared so that you may submit a vote via email.  To request these materials, please email [email protected] .  Completed ballots would need to be emailed by 4:00pm to [email protected] on September 9th to be counted in that evenings vote.

The LCFB Board of Directors thanks each of you for being a member in our organization.  We will do everything possible to make sure that the County Annual Meeting is a safe and family friendly event.  Our hope is that you will attend either in person or by reviewing the Annual Meeting materials and by submitting a ballot via email.  2020 has been a challenging year and we hope that our meeting will give members an enjoyable evening out at the fair.

Livingston County Farm Bureau will hold their Annual Meeting on September 9th. Materials will be made available via email if you cannot attend in person

LCFB Vice President, Matt Marston named to MFB Leadership Class

Livingston County Farm Bureau Vice President, Matt Marston, was selected from amongst 90 nominations from county Farm Bureaus across Michigan to participate in the 2020-21 ProFILE Leadership class.  Marston and the other 17 participants will begin ProFILE's 15-month agenda of leadership and professional development activities, including expert speakers, involvement opportunities and visits to ag-industry sites in Michigan and nearby states.  ProFILE gets underway in January 2020 with orientation at the Michigan Farm Bureau (MFB) home office in Lansing and a visit to Carhartt's headquarters in Dearborn.

Meetings in February and March will include participation in MFB's Washington Legislative Seminar.  The busy summertime offers an optional picnic outing before the schedule ramps back up again in September and a flurry of activity the following winter.

In January 2021 participants will embark on a five-day multistate bus trip, then take part in MFB's Lansing Legislative Seminar the following month before the program concludes with a graduation ceremony in March 2021.

Established in 1990, ProFILE is an intensive leadership development course for the best and brightest young Farm Bureau members ages 25-35.  Prospective participants are first nominated by their county Farm Bureau then selected by a MFB staff panel based on the strength of their applications.
LCFB Vice President, Matt Marston, chosen for MFB 2020-21 ProFILE leadership class

red tractor working field mfn 20182020 will mark the 18th year Livingston County Farm Bureau (LCFB) will hold an education day specially targeted for elementary (3rd grade) students.  The goal of Agriculture Awareness Day is to present an educational activity designed to provide hands-on agriculture and natural resources education for students, teachers, parents and chaperones.  Agriculture Awareness Day is the biggest single day event LCFB presents to the public each year.

Some of the benefits of Agriculture Awareness Day are:
1) Education of consumers on where their food comes from.
2) Successfully teaches students and consumers about agriculture through interactive and fun activities.
3) Raises awareness of the need for agriculture in our society.
4) Instills proper land use and awareness of natural resources.
5) Provides teachers useful classroom educational materials to integrate into their curriculum.

In 2020 Agriculture Awareness Day will be held on Thursday, May 28, 2020, at the Fowlerville Family Fairgrounds in Fowlerville.  Volunteers will present short lessons to the various classroom groups on topics ranging from seed germination and dairy nutrition to live animal exhibits.  Over 800 third graders from Pinckney, Fowlerville, and Howell schools are expected to benefit from all of the hard work by the volunteers.

The success of this program depends on the coordinated efforts of over 100 adult and teen volunteers.  We need the assistance of volunteers to help guide the students plus those able to complete manual labor required for the set-up/tear-down of the exhibit.  If you would like further information, please contact Deb Holmes at the LCFB office at (517) 546-8124 or [email protected].

2020 will mark the 18th year Livingston County Farm Bureau has held an education day specifically targeted for elementary students.

State News


The Johnson family hosted an entire K-12 student body at their potato farm near Sagola.

Champion of Excellence Awards recognize county Farm Bureaus for outstanding grassroots efforts implementing member-developed policy, advocating organizational positions and promoting Michigan agriculture.

Activities are evaluated based on the innovation and effectiveness of programs executed over the preceding program year. Successful programs are shared with other counties so great ideas can spread, enriching Farm Bureau and Michigan agriculture overall.

This is the second batch of Michigan’s 12 district-level winners; look for more in the weeks to come. One state-level winner will be announced at the 2021 Council of Presidents Conference.

District 5

Clinton County Farm Bureau coordinated ‘Clinton County Ghosts, Trivia and Great Food,’ a summerlong scavenger hunt that had participants sampling local fare while learning about the area’s farming legacy.

Guided by a booklet or mobile app, members visited 14 locations, each with clues and questions for points. Winners were selected at the subsequent annual meeting, each earning cash donations for the local school, 4-H or FFA group of their choice.

Participants included local Farm Bureau Insurance agencies, 10 local restaurants, 40 regular members, nine volunteers, 20 non-members and 25 associates. All learned more about how Farm Bureau benefits the community while promoting leadership development, current issues and connecting local residents with agriculture.

A top priority was engaging new and uninvolved members. Program leaders encouraged volunteers to embrace components that interested them, communicate with and support other volunteers, and represent Farm Bureau and Michigan agriculture.

District 12

Iron Range Farm Bureau coordinated with a local school to host a daylong education day at the Johnson family’s potato farm near Sagola. The entire student body, K-12, visited learning locations explaining different aspects of the farm’s operations with mini lessons tailored to each age group.

Each station was manned by a different presenter, including the farm’s own family members, retired teachers and MSU educators, each covering topics suited to their expertise. Together they covered the potato plant life cycle, evolving mechanization, the farm’s history and deep local roots, food safety, irrigation, water quality and storage.

Each presenter linked their presentation to classroom lessons in math, science, mechanics and other areas. Offering content for every age group at one event meant even the school staff learned some things, including the effectiveness of reaching a lot of students in a short time. Altogether 450 students, teachers and chaperones attended, and everyone left impressed by one facet or another, from the heavy equipment to the mountain of potatoes.

Coverage in the local newspaper ensured the event reached into the greater community, far beyond the farm and school. That was a community-relations win for the local farm community, as an abundance of information was shared about crop rotation, water quality and food safety programs, illustrating to all attendees the level of responsibility and environmental stewardship local farms embrace.

District 10

Clare County Farm Bureau’s Tract-or-Treat event last October saw local farmers lining downtown Clare with decorated tractors and implements. Families walked their children from one machine to the next, collecting goodies and enjoying activities along the way.

Treats included farm products like cheese sticks, apples, popcorn, maple sugar candy, honey and mini pumpkins — each with educational information attached.

Rooted in Promotion & Education, the effort informed attendees about locally raised farm products and the equipment used to raise them. Members took questions from children and grown-ups alike, connecting farmers with the community in laid-back, informative conversation.

Over the course of two hours, 13 Clare County members interacted with more than 250 people and handed out information on 15 different fruit, vegetable and livestock commodities — all in a family-friendly setting that dramatically boosted the local Farm Bureau’s profile.

~ ~ ~

Look for another batch of Champions of Excellence district winners in the next Farm Gate, Oct. 20.

Champion of Excellence Awards recognize county Farm Bureaus for outstanding grassroots efforts implementing member-developed policy, advocating organizational positions and promoting Michigan agriculture.

The “hybrid-virtual” format of this year’s Michigan Farm Bureau Annual Meeting marks the event’s biggest makeover since it outgrew and left the Michigan State University campus in 1970. Wrinkles are still being ironed, but what’s coming slowly into focus are the promising opportunities for refreshed member involvement at the county and regional level.

That grassroots activity is at the heart of the monthlong agenda, and there’s a lot to accomplish between the Nov. 4 kickoff and Dec. 2 business sessions.

District-level meetings Nov. 9-19 will offer a new kind of delegate experience for those chosen to represent their county Farm Bureaus. Delegate registration will be open Oct. 12-23; substitution deadlines will be forthcoming.

Delegates should be prepared to review the resolutions booklet online beginning Nov. 1; printed copies will be available at district meetings. Reviews should prioritize looking for possible amendments and potential omissions. Members will be encouraged to address either; procedures for doing so will be forthcoming.

“What we anticipate is something like what our old open-policy sessions used to look like,” said Deb Schmucker, director of MFB’s field operations division. “Delegates will need at least a smartphone or a tablet to vote.”

Staffers from MFB’s public policy and commodity division will attend each district meeting to help facilitate those conversations.

Even-numbered districts will also have to squeeze elections onto their agendas.

See below for a complete list of district meeting times, dates and locations.

~ ~ ~

Prior to all that, the Nov. 4 kickoff session will take place entirely online and therefore viewable by all members with high-speed internet. MFB President Carl Bednarski will launch the monthlong process with his annual address, which will include announcements of the 2020 Volunteer of the Year and Distinguished Service to Agriculture winners.

That agenda will also include reports from CEOs Scott Piggott and Don Simon, Treasurer David Baker, representatives of the rules and credentials committees, and approval of last year’s annual meeting minutes.

~ ~ ~

The Dec. 2 business and policy session will take place in person or virtually by district, based on COVID phase restrictions; they’re also listed below.

All 12 districts will join as satellites around a hub composed of MFB leadership and the state Policy Development committee to manage the proceedings:

  • Nomination and election of district, Young Farmer and P&E directors
  • Election of MFB President
  • Policy resolution discussion – reaffirmation style
  • Policy resolutions

~ ~ ~

Look for more details as they develop in Farm Gate and all your usual Farm Bureau communications channels.

~ ~ ~

District Meetings

District 1

  • Nov. 9 — 6 p.m.; Essenhaus Inn and Conference Center, 240 US-20, Middlebury, IN; dinner included
  • Dec. 2 — 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.; same location; lunch included

District 2

  • Nov. 19 — 6:30 p.m.; Hillsdale College Dow Hotel and Conf. Center, 22 E. Galloway Dr, Hillsdale; dinner included
  • Dec. 2 — 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.; same location; lunch included

District 3

  • Nov. 11 — 6 p.m.; Crystal Gardens Banquet Center, 5768 E Grand River Ave, Howell; dinner included
  • Dec. 2 — 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.; same location; lunch included

District 4

  • Nov. 19 — 9 a.m. to 11:30 a.m.; Railside Golf Club, 2500 76th Street SW, Byron Center; lunch included
  • Dec. 2 — 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.; same location; lunch included

District 5

District 6

District 7

  • Nov. 11 — 6 p.m. to 8 p.m.; Reed City Fire Department, 523 Morse St, Reed City; dinner included
  • Dec. 2 — 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.; same location; lunch included

District 8

  • Nov. 12 — 6 p.m.; Jeremy and Kayla Enser Farm, 8290 Kochville Rd, Saginaw; dinner included
  • Dec. 2 — 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.; same location; lunch included

District 9

  • Nov. 11 — 6 p.m.; Evergreen Resort, 7880 Mackinaw Trail, Cadillac; dinner included
  • Dec. 2 — 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.; same location; lunch included

District 10

  • Nov. 9 — 9:30 a.m.; Arenac Community Center, 583 E Cedar Street, Standish; refreshments will be served
  • Dec. 2 — 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.; same location; lunch included

District 11

  • Nov. 10 — 6:30 p.m.; Courtyard Marriott, 1866 Mkwa Place, Petoskey; dinner included
  • Dec. 2 — 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.; same location; lunch included

District 12

  • Nov. 10 — 11 a.m. EST; Sweet Grass Convention Center, W 399 US 2 & 41, Harris; lunch included
  • Dec. 2 — 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. EST; same location; lunch included
The “hybrid-virtual” format of this year’s Michigan Farm Bureau Annual Meeting marks the event’s biggest makeover since it outgrew and left the Michigan State University campus in 1970. Wrinkles are still being ironed, but what’s coming slowly into f

Champion of Excellence Awards recognizes county Farm Bureaus for their outstanding efforts to implement member-developed policy, advocate organizational positions and educate and promote Michigan agriculture.

Grassroots activities are evaluated based on the innovation and effectiveness of programs executed over the preceding program year. Successful programs are then shared with other counties so great ideas can spread and multiply, enriching the greater organization and Michigan agriculture overall.

Following are the first three of Michigan’s 12 district-level winners; look for more in the weeks to come. One state-level winner will be announced at next year’s Council of Presidents Conference.

District 1: Berrien

 
Last November the Berrien County Farm Bureau partnered with 4-H clubs and the Southwest Michigan Collegiate Farm Bureau in “Thanks-4-Giving,” providing bushel baskets full of seasonal edibles to local families in need. Volunteers collaborated to collect and package food, then deliver finished baskets to underprivileged families across southwest Michigan, helping neighbors in need.

By filling gaps left by local agencies, Farm Bureau members led by example, demonstrating it’s better to give than receive. Each participating group contributed, experiencing the rewards of helping the less fortunate while sharing the abundance of southwestern Michigan agriculture.

The project was innovative for its multi-organization collaboration. On packing day, the youth building at the county fairgrounds resembled a food distribution warehouse: rows of food, stacks of baskets, coolers filled with frozen turkeys and a human assembly line circling the room.

From Clover Buds to senior Farm Bureau leaders, everyone worked side-by-side to fill the baskets to overflowing. Excited chatter about fat turkeys and the aroma of fresh-baked rolls filled the air — plus a warm camaraderie knowing their efforts meant giving local families more to be thankful for.

There’d never been a local drive in which those donating the food also delivered it, but by noon that day all 110 baskets (4,400 pounds of food!) were in the appreciative hands of local families — some delivered, some picked up from the fairgrounds.

Another benefit was closer relations between the county Farm Bureau, Collegiate Farm Bureau, and more than a dozen local 4-H clubs. Local agribusinesses (including some previously uninvolved members) and a Farm Bureau Insurance agent also donated.

Finally, many of the recipient families met Farm Bureau and 4-H members as a result, tying the local farm community closer to those whose food they raise.

District 4: Barry

With in-person events off limits but still eager to make a good first impression, the Barry County Farm Bureau coordinated a remote new-member-welcome meeting via WebEx. They introduced the board, outlined county Farm Bureau structure and summarized the benefits of membership. Embodying the organization’s grassroots ethic and reaching many new members at once, the experiment proved a successful means of welcoming newcomers while respecting everyone’s health and safety — just like the good Farm Bureau family members they are.

Even through the abstract format of a computer screen, everyone involved was able to find common ground and start building the relationships at the core of the Farm Bureau experience. One newcomer interested in the Young Farmer program was connected with the county chair; others asked general questions about the policy process and member benefits.

While the focus was on new members, any regular member was encouraged to join in. Those who did helped drive home the value of membership and the extensive networking opportunities Farm Bureau offers. The first-of-its-kind event met membership-campaign requirements, spurred leaders to lead and offered practical new skills for everyone involved.

District 2: Calhoun

 

Calhoun County Farm Bureau event combined intergenerational networking and policy chatter — plus a touch of stress management — in its Float Down the River. Even Mother Nature cooperated to make the family-friendly excursion a success, including lunch on an island for the 25 participants.

The Float achieved two key goals: member networking and policy discussion. It attracted several Farm Bureau newcomers and brought some long-uninvolved members out of the woodwork. Everyone found common ground quickly and enjoyed discussing shared issues and challenges, learning from each other and reaping value from their membership.

Everyone chipped in with loading and unloading the boats and helping others board their vessels, labeled with the names and farms of each participant.

The Young Farmer committee took the lead organizing and promoting the event, reserving canoes, buying food, arranging signage and transporting vessels — all within budget.

Board members heard about other farmers’ concerns, younger farmers connected with their elders and active members shared which Farm Bureau activities they most enjoy and find most effective.

Many participants appreciated the fresh new approach, the opportunity to leave farm stresses behind for a day and forge new relationships with like-minded peers.

~ ~ ~

Look for another batch of Champions of Excellence district winners in the next Farm Gate, Oct. 6.

Champion of Excellence Awards recognizes county Farm Bureaus for their outstanding efforts to implement member-developed policy, advocate organizational positions and educate and promote Michigan agriculture.

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