It’s a source of pride for Iowa farm families to be recognized for their longevity, and the deadline is this weekend to submit applications for Iowa’s Century Farm and Heritage Farm honors.
Since last year’s event had to be called off due to COVID-19, Iowa Ag Secretary Mike Naig says he’s especially looking forward to the ceremonies this August at the Iowa State Fair.
“There’s no better place to celebrate our Century and Heritage Farm winners than in the historic livestock pavilion,” Naig says. “We’re going to expand. We’ll have about a day-and-a-half of a program of recognizing Century and Heritage Farm winners because we want to make sure those folks who would have been recognized at the fair last year get a chance to do it again this year.”
Naig says this marks the 45th year for the Century Farm honors, which recognize families that have owned the same farm for 100 years, and it’s the 15th year for the Heritage Farm awards, which are for farms in the same family for 150 years.
“Just think about what it has taken for a family to keep a piece of ground through a depression, through market ups and downs, health issues, world wars, and the farm crisis of the 1980s,” Naig says. “These have been great, great challenges and it’s just a small thing that we can do to help recognize that tenacity and that resiliency of Iowa farm families.”
To be eligible, there must be consecutive ownership within the same family for 100 (or 150) years or more of at least 40 acres of the original holding of Iowa farmland.
The current owner must be related to a person who owned the land 100 (or 150) years ago, and the application must be notarized and postmarked before June 1st.
(Pat Powers, KQWC, Webster City)