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Published August 12, 2009, 12:00 AM

Olsons of Brandon named 'Farm Family of the Year'

The Brad and Robyn Olson family of Brandon has been named Douglas County’s “2009 Farm Family of the Year” by the University of Minnesota.

The Brad and Robyn Olson family of Brandon has been named Douglas County’s “2009 Farm Family of the Year” by the University of Minnesota.

Brad’s parents moved to this farm in 1961 where they raised nine kids – seven girls and two boys.

Brad has worked here all his life. When his father died in 1989, he bought the cows and machinery from his mother and rents the land from her.

He farms about 425 acres of corn, beans and alfalfa. He milks 60 cows and raises all of the steers and heifers with a lot of help from his boys, Kasey and Tyler.

Brad’s future goals are to buy the land so his kids can someday farm if they want to.

The Olsons are one of 73 farm families from around the state, one from each participating county, being honored by the university this year.

The families will be officially recognized in a ceremony Thursday, August 6 at the annual Farmfest near Redwood Falls. Profiles of the 2009 honorees and information on the recognition event can be found on the University’s farm family website, http://mnfarmfamilies.cfans.umn.edu/.

Families receiving honors were selected by their local county Extension committees and have demonstrated a commitment to enhancing and supporting agriculture and agriculture production.

“The University of Minnesota is proud to recognize these farm families for their contribution to agriculture and their communities,” said Bev Durgan, dean of University of Minnesota Extension. “There is no standard definition of a Minnesota family farm. The one factor they all have in common is that the families work together to make their farm successful. That farm family work ethic is the major contributor to the success of Minnesota communities and Minnesota’s agriculture.”

Along with Farmfest, University units sponsoring the recognition event include University of Minnesota Extension, Minnesota Agricultural Experiment Station, the College of Food, Agricultural and Natural Resource Sciences, and the College of Veterinary Medicine.

Farmfest runs August 4-6 at the Gilfillan Estate, near Redwood Falls. Event hours are 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. on August 4 and 5, and 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. on August 6. Admission is $8 per person, and those 18 and younger are admitted free.

More information on Farmfest is available at www.farmshows.com/ffst.

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