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Hessler Family Farm Recieves Farm Family Award

Image of Hessler Family

Pictured: Rick and Cheryl Hessler, middle, with the whole Hessler clan. The Hessler Family Farm has been named one of 10 recipients of the 2021 Farm Family Award by Farmfair International.

The Hessler Family Farm, of Saddle Hills County, has been named one of 10 recipients of Farmfair International’s 2021 Farm Family Award. The ceremony to hand out the awards, held on Friday, November 12, at the Edmonton EXPO Centre during Farmfair International, hosted a total of 25 farm families, which represent award recipients for both 2020 and 2021.

Farmfair International Director Leah Jones said the awards recognize the contributions farm families make to their community.

She addressed award recipients: “Today is about you and recognizing that the west was built on agriculture and family farms. You are why Alberta continues to be an international leader and a model in the agricultural industry. It is because of you that we can celebrate important agricultural events such as Farmfair International, so thank you for what you do.”

The Hessler Family Farm is owned and operated by Rick and Cheryl Hessler, their son Tyson and daughter-in-law Brandy, and daughter Terri and son-in-law Adam.

Rick started farming with his parents and purchased his first land in 1971. The operation now consists of 3,200 acres in grain and 120 cow/calf pairs.

The family is heavily involved in community work through organizations such as the Savanna Agricultural Society, Savanna Minor Hockey, Savanna 4-H Beef and 4-H Foods Clubs, St. John’s Lutheran Church, Savanna Time Out for Mom Group, Silver Valley REA, Blueberry Mountain Grazing Reserve, Saddle Hills County Agricultural Service Board, Savanna Volunteer Fire Department and Savanna Minor Baseball.

For more than 50 years, farm families from northern and central Alberta communities have been recognized as recipients of the Farm Family Award.

Agricultural service boards from northern and central Alberta nominate outstanding families who best represent the values of the family farm within their rural community. The award honours both their farming business practices and community involvement.

The rest of the 2021 Farm Family Award recipients are:

  • Jim and Jina Greilach, 3G Farms Ltd – County of Barrhead
  • Jerome and Liz Isaac, Harper Creek Agro Inc. – Municipal District of Greenview
  • Arseny, Nick and Stephan Kuznetsov, Kuznetsov Farms Ltd – Lac La Biche County
  • Fred and Darice Laughy, Hidden Creek Farm – Municipal District of Slave River
  • Kelly and Christi Friesen, Rebellion Farms – Municipal District of Peace
  • Steven, Dana and Louis Tokarz – Municipal District of Smoky River
  • Reed and Ardelle McPherson – Strathcona County
  • Trent and Kimberly Selte – County of Vermilion River
  • Joe, Colleen and Layne Magnuson – County of Wetaskiwin

The 2020 Farm Family Award recipients also include Halcourt Land & Cattle Company, of the County of Grande Prairie. The farm is owned and operated by Gary and Daphne Ray, along with their son Josh and daughter-in-law Catherine, and daughter Chelsea and son-in-law Don.

The operation, located in the Halcourt area near Beaverlodge, includes 5,000 acres in mixed grain and 700 cow/calf pairs.

Their family has farmed in the area since 1911. Gary is heavily involved with industry groups such as the Beaverlodge Soil Conservation Society and the South Peace Forage Association. Various family members also volunteer with youth groups such as Beaverlodge Minor Hockey, minor soccer, 4-H, dance, and daycare. They also enjoy participating in the annual Beaverlodge Summer Agri-Fair parade.

The rest of the 2020 Farm Family Award recipients are:

  • David and Tracy Morey, Unique Valleystream Genetics – Athabasca County
  • Jim and Cheryl Sheldon, J&C Sheldon Ranch – Big Lakes County
  • Roger, Ken and Kurtis Antoniuk, Antoniuk Farms – Municipal District of Bonnyville
  • Preston and Julie Basnett – Clear Hills County
  • Roger, Stan and Derek Chevraux, Century 12 Farms Ltd – Flagstaff County
  • Robert and Darcie Steffler – Lac Ste. Anne County
  • Tim and Debbie Hofstra, Hofstra Farms – Leduc County
  • Darryl and Stacy Fowler, Fowler Farms – County of Minburn
  • Jason and Amber Kuester – County of Northern Lights
  • Frank and Brenda Maddock, Jasper Springs Farm – Parkland County
  • Edward and Tammy Huk, Huk Family Farm – County of Smoky Lake
  • Kevin and Keith Goutbeck and Russ Van Boom, Northbank Potato Farms – Sturgeon County
  • Ryan and Kathy Zajic, Zajic Farms Ltd – Municipal District of Wainwright
  • Brett and Jillian Byers, Blue Ridge Farms – Woodlands County

This year’s Farmfair International was held on November 10-13 at Edmonton EXPO Centre.

For more than 45 years, Farmfair International has been one of Canada’s top agricultural shows and Alberta’s largest beef cattle show.

Exhibitors from across western Canada gather in Edmonton each November to showcase their top livestock genetics to purebred producers, local ranchers and international buyers


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