A farm is a place where people raise livestock (animals) and grow food. People who work on the farm are called farmers.
Many would-be farmers have overly romanticized notions about what it will be like to live and work on a small farm. It’s best to start off small and expand gradually until you are comfortable raising a good amount of food.
At Goldview Farms in Waverly, Minnesota, the Bakeberg’s have kept the family farming tradition alive generation after generation.
WAVERLY, Minn. — Pat Bakeberg is at work early every day.
“I shoot for 5:30 a.m. or 6 a.m. to start milking. It takes about 2 1/2 to 3 hours to milk and another hour to clean up. Five a.m. to 10 a.m. is normal, I shoot for 9 but it’s usually 10 o’clock in the morning before we’re done and that happens twice a day 7 days a week,” Bakeberg explained.
Bakeberg’s wife Joanna and a part-timer help out with milking the herd of 120 Holstein, Brown Swiss and Jersey cows at Goldview Farms in Waverly. The farm is made up of about 850 acres of hay, corn and soybeans.
“I don’t have a lot of the cows named but you know the cows, just looking at their spots,” said Bakeberg.
Pat briefly left the farm to attend college before deciding farming was his future profession.
“I came back in 2004 and farmed with my parents until my dad passed away in December of 2021. Joanna and I took it over right after that and it’s been full steam ahead,” said Bakeberg.
Joanna’s primary job on the farm is caring for the calves.
“There’s a never-ending list, some days it’s one step forward and three steps back! It all gets done in the end and there’s no shortage of stuff to do,” she said.
This year the Bakeberg family received the Sesquicentennial Farm Award from the Minnesota Farm Bureau. It’s an honor given to families who have owned their farms for at least 150 years and are involved in agriculture production. They are recognized at the Minnesota State Fair.
“It’s the same family for 365 days a year 150 years of feeding animals, providing food for the world, there’s not many people that can say that,” said Pat.
“It’s history, it’s really neat and a rarity to be one family multiple generations over the years,” said Joanna. “When you look at it and how it’s changed over the years from generation to generation. It’s all stayed the same and everyone has the same goal: We farm, we take care of our animals and God provides, and we sow and it comes full circle for us.”
Pat’s mom Faye Bakeberg has spent nearly 53 years on the farm, raising a family and helping with a wide variety of chores.
“It gives you a good feeling that you’re feeding the world, you’re helping out. It’s a great place to raise kids. We have five kids and they all ran around the farm, now we have 13 grandkids and three of them are here every day,” said Faye.
Pat and Joanna’s kids Olivia, Harper and Hattie, are the next generation of Bakebergs.
“They know that this is what we have to do, chores and take care of our animals before we can have too much fun. On the same token they enjoy helping and stuff,” said Joanna.
“It’s long hours, stressful and yet you still do it, it’s in your blood.”
This year the Minnesota Farm Bureau recognized 43 farms for Sesquicentennial Farm awards and 89 farms as Century Farms.
Qualifying farms must be 50 acres or more and in continuous family ownership for at least 100 years for Century Farms and 150 years for Century Farms.
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