Three farm families classified as grain farmers are amongst the crew of 17 families selected to represent Indiana grain farmers at the Indiana State Fair this year. Some of the other families also raise corn and soybeans or other crops, but they also have a specialty interest, such as pork or beef, or even shrimp!
The Year of the Farmer theme is different from past commodity themes. You can't just plant a farmer in flower beds. But you can bring live farm families to the fair for fair goers to talk to each day, and that's what's happening this year.
The family for Friday, Aug. 14 is David and Kyla Lash and family from Mentone in northern Indiana.
Dale and Lisa Koester and family represented southern Indiana grain farming earlier in the fair. They were honored on Aug. 9. The Koesters also have a dairy herd in the multi-family operation. That's just how diversified Indiana agriculture is today!
Dow AgroSciences is the key sponsor for the Year of the Farmer program at the Indiana State Fair, and helped prepare promotional materials on each of the families that will be participating through the entire run of the fair.
The Lash family also has a 400-sow farrow-to-finish operation, so even they don't raise only crops. David says the farm grew under the leadership of his parents, John and Darlene. They rely heavily on no-till practices in their area, and also count on cover crops, especially to hold onto nitrogen that might not be used by the crop.
David and Kyla have a young son, Tannon, who just might be the next generation of the Lash family to farm.
You can meet them and learn more if you are at the fair during their day by visiting with them at the Glass barn sponsored by Indiana Soybean Alliance. They will give a live chat with fairgoers at 2:30 p.m.
See a full list of family farmers and links to their stories as they appear on the Indiana Prairie Farmer website: Indiana Soybean Alliance's Glass Barn will feature 'Year of the Farmer' hosts