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River Country Grazing Network Upcoming Events

2014 Grazing Network Schedule

Cost to attend: $15/non-member           FREE/Network members

Wednesday, August 13th, 6:00 pm to 8:00 pm – RavenCroftFarm
Bob & Pam Keil, 1036 Rustic Road 3, Glenwood City, WI 

Bob Keil, a retired electrical engineer, has always had a passion for organic farming. Bob and his wife, Pam, began with bare land in 1999. They had a vision for providing healthy food through good land stewardship and by raising grass-fed beef, lamb and chickens.  RavenCroftFarm became a reality with the purchase of cows and sheep in 2002 and chickens in 2003. RavenCroftFarm is a 140 acre organic certified farm nestled in the hills of western Wisconsin.  Their practice of Management Intensive multi-species grazing has enabled them to raise organic beef and lambs without parasite problems. They are increasing their grazing density and pasture recovery time as they move toward high density (mob) grazing. Multiple paddocks and daily moves are possible by using lightweight electronet portable fencing and garden hoses, a float valve and a 30 gallon water tank. All their products are direct marketed.
Directions: (from I-94) Take exit #28 (WI-128) north approx. 4.7 miles to 100th Ave.  Go east on 100th Ave. approx. 1 mile then turn north on Rustic Road 3, continue approx. 4/10ths mile to RavenCroftFarm on the left.

Thursday, September 4th, 6:00 pm to 8:00 pm – Belz Family Farm
Scott & Marie Belz, 1063 230th St, Baldwin, WI

Belz Family Farm is a 100% grass fed Red Angus operation, using exclusively Pharo Cattle Co. genetics since 2005.  The herd consists of 50 cow/calf pairs, replacement heifers and bulls.  Most steers are sold as feeders with the intention of finishing more in the future.  They manage 240 fenced acres and rotationally graze with plans to MOB graze as cow numbers increase.  They believe in “calving with nature” (May –July) and strategic out-wintering (rolling out bales on pasture whenever possible).  Improvements to their operation include high tensile electric perimeter fencing, lanes upgraded making use of EQIP funding and converting a dairy barn into a cattle handling facility using plans by Dr. David Kammel, UW Extension.
Directions (from I-94):  Take Baldwin Exit #19 (Hwy 63) north approx. 4 miles to county Road E, turn east on County Road E to 230th St,  go north on 230th St. (left at the 2nd intersection).  Belz Family Farm is on the right.

Wednesday, September 10th, 10:00 am to 3:00 pm – Workshop and Pasture Walk w/Woody Lane
Workshop Location: Big Elk Creek Lutheran Church
6118 County Road M South, Elk Mound, WI 54739
Pasture Walk Location: Lymett Family Farm (Jason Benson) 6667 36th St, Colfax, WI

  • Tentative Schedule:
    10:00 - 11:00     Grazing 101: Forage and Pasture Management
    11:00 - 12:00     Self-funded grazing groups - taking ownership
    12:00 -   1:00     Lunch with question and answer time
    1:00 -   3:00     Pasture walk utilizing various grazing livestock to build well managed and productive pastures and profitable livestock

Cost:    $30/person for members of River Country, GrassWorks and WI Farmers Union
$40/person for non members of these organizations

Directions: Big Elk Creek Lutheran Church (from I-94 & Hwy 12/29 Interchange) Take Exit #52 (US-12/WI-29) toward WI-40/Colfax/Elk Mound.  Continue to follow WI-29 approximately 4 miles then turn left onto 1010th St. Continue north on 1010th St approximately 2 miles then turn right onto 60th Ave.  Continue on 60th Ave approximately 1 mile then turn left onto County Road M South.  The church will be on the left approximately 2/10ths mile.  (from Chippewa Falls, WI) Follow WI-29 approximately 12 ½ miles to County Hwy M South in Wheaton. Turn right on County Road M South and continue approximately 3 ½ miles to the church on the left.

Saturday, October 11th, 11:00 am to 2:00 pm – Jackson Family Farm
Jim & Bonnie Jackson, 2806 N 84th Ave, Chippewa Falls, WI

The Jacksons are in their 21st year of grazing livestock on their farm. They began with grazing dairy cows in 1993 and in January of 2014 they sold the dairy cows.  In 2014 they are transitioning into another generation of grass based farming, grazing their own 50 dairy heifers (½ Holsteins/Flechvieh breed) and custom grazing 100 dairy Holstein heifers for a neighboring dairy farm.  Over the years Jim has experimented with planting a variety of crops including grasses, legumes, annuals and grazing alfalfa.  Additionally, they have added many innovations such as a swing parlor and gateless lanes.  In 2014 they will be renovating a 15 acre pasture; grazing until the end of July and seeding down a fall grazing crop of oats and turnips.  The Jackson’s have been instrumental in helping the Chippewa Valley Graziers & the River Country Grazing Initiative take shape.
Directions (from Eau Claire):  Take US HWY 53 (Bypass) to North Crossing Exit (WI-312/County Road Q). Go East on County Road Q approx. 3 miles, turn left onto N 75th Ave, turn right onto Burnell Drive, turn left onto N 84th Ave, follow approx. 1 mile. Jackson Family Farm is on the left.

To help with planning for these events we encourage you to register online

OR call 715-579-5229

*Sincerest thanks to the hosting producers, River Country Grazing Network members and Wisconsin Farmers Union!*

 

It’s your network, your voice; let it be heard!

2014 West Central WI Spring Grazing Conference

Thanks to our Speakers

Brad Heins
Assistant Professor of Organic Dairy Management, West Central Research Center University of MN in Morris, Minnesota

Doug Gunnink
Founder of the Gunnink Forage Institute, Forage Expert and "Whole Farm Management" Consultant

Thanks to our Farmer Panel

Kay Craig - Grassway Organics, LLC

Lynn P. Johnson - Peterson Farmstead Farm

Bob Keil - RavenCroft Farm

Dan Pearson - Pure Sun Farm

Thanks to our Sponsors and Supporters!

2013 West Central WI Fall Grazing Conference

Thanks to our Speakers

Geoff Brink

Andy Hager

Thanks to our Farmer Panel

Brian O'Connell & Rich O'Connell

Mariann Holm

Jason Smith

Jerry Wagner


Video of past grazing events:

Benson Pasture Walk Article from "The Country Today"

How To Move 90 Dairy Cows in Four Minutes!

Self Propelled Harvesting Units

Dairy Cows on Grass In October, 50 + Days Rest Period - October 8th, 2009 - An example of what can be accomplished after 15 years of praticing Management intensive Grazing (MiG) & focusing on the 3 legs of the stool; 1) Time On a paddock (Occupancy Period), 2) Time Off a paddock (Rest Period) & 3) Soil Fertility.

Grazing event pictures:

From our last River Country Grazing Initiative Pasture Walk, hosted by the Jackson Family Farm & coordinated by the Chippewa, Coulee & St. Croix Valley Grazier's Networks. Enjoy!
Jackson farm
Jim & Bonnie Jackson farm Aug-2011 Pasture walk at Jackson farm Aug-2011 Grazing cows at Jackson farm Aug-2011
Pasture walk at Jackson farm Aug-2011 Pasture walk at Jackson farm Aug-2011 Jim & Bonnie Jackson farm Aug-2011

**For More Information Contact River Country RC&D Grazing Staff**

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Last updated: June 9, 2014