Three of the largest general farm organizations in the Dakotas are meeting this week.
The North Dakota Farmers Union will meet Nov. 16-17 at the Alerus Center, in Grand Forks, N.D. Vance Taylor, president and general manager of the North Dakota State Mill, will welcome members to the convention and keynote speaker Byron Dorgan will take the stage around 1 p.m. Breakout sessions on taxes, the fertilizer market, oil mineral rights, supplemental insurance and long-term care insurance will be held in the afternoon. A family fun night with casino-type games and activities is planned for Friday evening. On Saturday, the convention continues with policy and action where Farmers Union members will introduce, debate and then adopt policy positions. Elections for officers and national convention delegates will be held as well. National Farmers Union President Roger Johnson and World Farmers Organization President Robert Carlson will speak in the afternoon. On Saturday evening, the annual Torchbearer banquet will be held where 34 youth from North Dakota will be recognized for their accomplishments and Bergman Scholarship recipients will be named. Evening entertainment by Backspin Productions including a D.J. and photo booth will cap off the convention. Free daycare will be provided throughout the weekend. Special activities such as swimming, movies and games will be arranged for different age groups, with supervision being provided by Farmers Union. The rock climbing wall will also be set up in the main arena during family fun night on Friday. Youth attending convention will earn credit for 2013 day class. A full agenda with specific times is posted on the web site at: www.ndfu.org.
The North Dakota Farm Bureau will be meeting Nov. 16-17 at the Holiday Inn in Fargo. The theme for this year is, "Celebrating 70-Generations of Progress." The annual meeting opens with an awards luncheon on Friday and will be followed by NDFB President Doyle Johannes' annual address. The delegate session starts Friday afternoon and continues through Saturday. Friday night ends with a live auction that benefits the NDFB Foundation. Saturday will include elections for three directors who serve on the NDFB Board. In addition, elections for NDFB PAC directors, the Promotion and Education Committee members, and the Young Farmers and Ranchers Committee members will be held. Saturday afternoon includes the discussion meet finals, where the winner will have a chance to compete in Nashville, Tenn. at the American Farm Bureau Convention in January. Williston Mayor, Ward Koeser will be speaking to the attendees Saturday night, Nov. 17. See: www.ndfb.org.
The South Dakota Farm Bureau will be meeting Nov. 16-18 at the Holiday Inn in Spearfish. Registration begins on Friday Nov. 16 at 9 a.m., Breakout sessions, opening ceremonies, policy updates, and the president address will follow. Walt Bones, SD Secretary of Agriculture, will address group. Mineral development, federal regulations, animal health, and state agricultural issues highlight the agenda. Informational sessions are open to the public. The group will also honor Michael Held, former CEO for the SD Farm Bureau, and Mary Duvall, former lobbyist, for their many years of service to the organization. For more information or to register, contact the South Dakota Farm Bureau at 605-353-8050, or see www.sdfbf.org.
The South Dakota Farmers Union is holding its annual meeting in Aberdeen in February.