Saxon Homestead

Visiting Saxon Homestead Farm includes an opportunity to enjoy some of the history behind the operation. It has been in the hands of the Klessig family since 1850 when their ancestors came to the area from north Germany. Saxon is actually the name of a region in Germany and is a reminder to the family of their heritage. The farm is located just west of Cleveland, Wisconsin, near the shores of Lake Michigan. The Klessig brothers, Robert and Karl, are the 5th generation to own and operate the farm with their families. There is a barn on their homestead where they occasionally host events to give other people a chance to take pleasure in what the Klessig ancestors established.

Cow crossing signs? Saxon Homestead Farm is primarily a dairy operation and they are serious about the use of intensive rotational grazing. Seeing cows heading out to pasture is not uncommon. "We pasture 800 acres," Robert said. "They are subdivided into 200 paddocks. Cows are rotated every 12 hours to a paddock with fresh grass and water." They have 350 acres on the home block, but some "cow crossing" is needed to get to some of the other acres. The operation also includes beef cattle that they breed, raise and finish. They take pride in raising high-quality grass-fed finished beef steers for market

When it comes to handling the business operations, Karl does all of the book work and computer work. Robert manages the pastures. There is much more work involved to having a successful operation than two men can handle. Thankfully, Robert's wife, Kathleen, and their 3 children, along with Karl's wife, Elizabeth, and their 3 children are also involved and taking on roles within the operation. Their dedicated employees work with the family members to keep everything running.

It is not unusual that a farmer's hobby also includes some farming, but Robert's takes him to a different state. "We really enjoy spending time out west at our place in North Dakota," he said. "We do a lot of hunting and fishing." While they are in North Dakota, he enjoys helping the neighbors with their beef herd. Bob and his son went out there to work 1,000 calves on a recent trip.

Robert also mentioned how grateful they are that their daughter, Caroline, was awarded one of the scholarships from Country Visions and CP Feeds this year. They appreciate the support that the Co-op offers, which is particularly nice in a tough year.

Thank you to Robert for taking time to talk about his farm and family for this week's Farmer Friday. It is wonderful to see the long legacy of agriculture for your family. We wish you, your family and your farm a successful future and a special 'good luck' to Caroline as she continues her education!

#FarmerFriday #80. To show our appreciation to our producer members Country Visions Cooperative will be giving a snapshot look of our customers and their operations in this feature each Friday