South Dakota farm and ranch families honored for a century or more on the land

Farm Forum

HURON – More than 100 farm and ranch families who have owned their land for a century or more were honored at the 2015 South Dakota State Fair, receiving a Century Farm or Quasquicentennial Farm award from the South Dakota Farm Bureau and the South Dakota Department of Agriculture.

This year, 67 families were honored with the Century award for 100 years of ownership and 44 were honored with the Quasquicentennial award for 125 years of family ownership. More than 80 of the families were able to be in attendance for the awards ceremony, held at the fair on Sept. 3 on the Farm Bureau Dakotaland Stage. Each family had the opportunity to say a few words about their farm or ranch as they were presented their award by Lucas Lentsch, South Dakota Secretary of Agriculture, and Scott VanderWal, president of the South Dakota Farm Bureau.

“Agriculture might appear much different today than it did a century or 125 years ago, but the heart of agriculture has not changed—farmers and ranchers who are proud to care for the land and the livestock, their families and communities. South Dakota is built on the hard work, faith, and perseverance of these farm and ranch families. On behalf of Farm Bureau, I offer our congratulations to each and every one of these deserving people,” VanderWal commented.

Secretary Lentsch added, “It is a true honor to meet all of these families who’ve been able to keep farms in their family for 100 years, 125 years or even longer, and to hear their stories. These families are the backbone of agriculture in South Dakota. It’s a privilege to serve them and all of South Dakota’s farm and ranch families.”

Since the program began in 1984, South Dakota Farm Bureau and the South Dakota Department of Agriculture have honored more than 2,880 farm and ranch families with these awards. To be recognized, at least 80 acres of the original land must have been continuously owned by the same family, and they must be able to provide proof of the original date of purchase.

More details about the program, including photos of each of the families, can be seen on Farm Bureau’s website,, through a link on the homepage.

2015 Century Farm Awards

Farm name (if applicable) – Owner or Owners – Location of the land (town or county)

1. Keith and Marie Andersen – Burdock

2. Lowell and Marilyn Bach – Watertown

3. Arvid and Elvina Boerger – Twin Brooks

4. Bosse Farm (Dean Bosse) – Elk Point

5. Armadale Farms, Inc. (LeRoy Braun and Doug Braun) – Mellette

6. Milford and Gail Brock – Hitchcock

7. Buchholz Ranch (Ramona Buchholz) – Philip

8. Ferguson Farm (Wilma A. Ferguson Buffington) – Artesian

9. Thomas Casper Cassutt – Ramona

10. Loren Cole and Kelly Cole – Platte

11. Danielson Farm (Ethelyn J. Fossum and David L. Danielson) – Canton

12. Alicia M. Dickson-Boyd – Mission

13. Shamrock Farms, Inc. (Louis Duffy) – Oldham

14. Dutton Ranch (Mel Dutton, David Dutton, Daryle Dutton, Linda Anders) – Faith

15. Connie L. Earley, B. Jean Eckmann, Ervin J. Eckmann – Beadle County

16. Connie L. Earley, B. Jean Eckmann, Ervin J. Eckmann – Beadle County

17. Richard Ensz and Bonnie Ensz DeNino – Bridgewater

18. Ericsson Farm (Clyde Erisson, Anita Ericsson Cross, Joyce Ericsson Nimis) – Salem

19. Evjen Ranch (Orville Evjen) – Prairie City

20. The Henry Fauth Family Farm (Lynn Fauth) – Emery

21. Milton and Elaine Freier – Dimock

22. William G. Freimuth, Mary E. Cimperman, Alice A. Schmidt – Marion

23. Thomas C. French, Randy and LeeAnn Freng – Mission Hill

24. Margie Garner – Parker

25. Robert and Roberta Gehlsen – Winner

26. Douglas and Vicky (Crockett) Gerlach – Mt. Vernon

27. Graf Family Farm (Robert W. Graf) – Houghton

28. David L. Green – Meade County

29. James D. Green – Meade County

30. Hansen Family Estate (Steven Hansen) – Clear Lake

31. Charles and Karen Harr – Zell

32. Larry and Cynthia Heinz – Onaka

33. Lillian Horton and Richard Horton – Wall

34. Ralph and Carol Hurlbert – Raymond

35. Perry Robert Johnson – Flandreau

36. Kayser Farms (Gregory Kayser) – Alexandria

37. KenBel, Inc. (Bruce, Dale & Neil Hoogestraat and Linda Bartels) – Chancellor

38. Todd H. Koester – Redfield

39. Gary E. and Nancy D. Krein – Eureka

40. Larry and Karolyn Langerock – Marion

41. Andrew and Rebecca Larson – Summit

42. Rolfe Ludtke – Webster

43. Lori and James Maher – Rutland

44. Kevin and Crystal (Bachmann) Manthey – Bonesteel

45. Larry and Fern Marie Mattke – Huron

46. Raymond Metter – Beadle County

47. Chris Nebelsick – Mitchell

48. Daniel and Michele Neises – Carthage

49. JoAnne Nelson and Norvin Brown Jr. – Meade County

50. Joyce G. Nelson – Britton

51. Larry Nelson – Lake Norden

52. Kathy Niles – Revillo

53. Dan Pease – Chamberlain

54. Wemmering Century Farm (Ramona Pesek) – Goodwin

55. Michael Raml and Robert F. Raml – Goodwin

56. Richard L. Roeber – Tulare

57. Lowell and Sharon Schwenn – Corona

58. Sealey Farm (John and Agnes Sealey) – Clay County

59. Ernst Schlueter Homestead (John A. Schlueter) – McCook County

60. Richard, Brett and Lee Sinkie – Gann Valley

61. John Smith – Burke

62. John Smith – Hudson

63. Verlin Tollefson – Hitchcock

64. Richard Wagner – Tulare

65. David and Jodi Wensing – Florence

66. Robert and Jennifer Weyrich – Sturgis

67. Dennis and Gwen Zelfer – Scenic

2015 Quasquicentennial Farm Awards

Farm name (if applicable) – Owner or Owners – Location of the land (town or county)

1. Hans T. Ablid Homestead (Vernon Ablid, Carlan Westre, Richard Ablid, Kari Stormo Dolge, Eric Stormo) – Wakonda

2. Anderson Homestead (James and Diane Anderson) – Hayti

3. Wayne and Susan Beatty – Volin

4. Carsten M. Bergheim – Madison

5. Bien Farm (Neil Bien) – Veblen

6. V. Dean Brakke – Presho

7. Caba Farms (Robert Caba) – Tabor

8. Delmer J. Dooley – Ramona

9. Brad and Skyla (Hofer) Dowden – Freeman

10. David and Sandy Elofson – Minnehaha County

11. Family of Paul Gross (Mary Ann, Mark, and Jeral Gross) – Bridgewater

12. Doug and Jeanne Hanson – Elk Point

13. Gloria Henglefelt – Alexandria

14. L.M. Johnson Farm (Craig L. Johnson) – Volin

15. Lynn and Dawn Johnsen – Wessington

16. James and Debra Kokes – Tabor

17. Ronald Krier – Emery

18. Ron and Gail Larson – Gettysburg

19. Russ and Pam Layton – Huron

20. Layle Evans Family (Dianne Evans Lee) – Conde

21. Richard, Douglas and Calvin Luebke – Parkston

22. MTDH, LLC (David W. Hosley, Merritt Hosley, Timothy Hosley) – Groton

23. Thomas H. Malloy – Union County

24. Gulbrand Heggen Family (Barbara Heggen Marsh) – Garretson

25. Joseph Morrison and Rose Mutziger – Armour

26. Bruce and Rita Nelson – Carthage

27. Art and Judy Ollila – Vale

28. David W. Pitts and Gary D.H. Pitts – Ramona

29. Gail and Leland Roe – Hazel

30. Calvin L. Rosenbaum – Jefferson

31. Rybak Family Farm (Daniel and Melissa Rybak, Michael and Rebecca Rybak) – Brule County

32. Ronald and Geraldine Schauer – McPherson County

33. Terrance J. and Carol M. Scheel – Alpena

34. Dwain Scheetz – Mt. Vernon

35. Polak Family Farm (Keith and Linda Polak Schroeder) – Tulare

36. Richard R. Schwanke, Jr. – Bemis

37. Larkin L. Lovejoy Homestead (Eric Stormo and Kari Stormo Dolge) – Wakonda

38. Karen, Haven and Lauren Stuck – Spink County

39. Karen, Haven and Lauren Stuck – Spink County

40. Kenneth Vilhauer – Hosmer

41. Troy Walraven – Meckling

42. Margaret Schaefer Wedell – Wessington Springs

43. James R. and Ruth Williams – Wakonda

44. Mrs. Vincent T. Williams – Bath