Congresswoman Marcy Kaptur, D-9th District, visited Stateler Family Farms, a Blanchard River Demonstration Farms Network participant in October. Kaptur, whose congressional district is north of the demo farms project, expressed her appreciation for farmers’ conservation practice efforts in the watersheds that flow north through her district and into the Western Lake Erie Basin. She said she came to learn more about what needed to be done and what could help farmers expedite the process of controlling nutrient runoff to help address the annual algal bloom and overall health of Lake Erie, calling the demo farm projects a “pioneering” effort in the country.
Demo farm participant Duane Stateler gave an overview of the edge-of-field monitoring and drainage practices on his farm. Staff from the Natural Resources Conservation Service, Ohio Farm Bureau’s partnering organization on the demonstration farms project, also offered perspective and answered questions. Others participating in the discussion and providing insight were Demo Farms Project Manager Aaron Heilers, researcher Kevin King of the U.S. Department of Agriculture and Laura Johnson from Heidelberg University, National Center for Water Quality.
At the end of the morning visit, Kaptur presented both Stateler and another demo farm participant Chris Kurt with a certificate for being good stewards of the land. Each received a flag that had recently flown over the Capitol building in Washington, D.C.
Photo caption: Blanchard River Demonstration Farms Network farmers Chris Kurt, left and Duane Stateler were honored for their conservation practice efforts by Congresswoman Marcy Kaptur, center, in October. She visited Stateler Family Farms to learn more about the edge-of-field monitoring and water conservation practices being used there.