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Farm Bureau banquet to feature 'recovering dairy farmer'

This year's Stevens County Farm Bureau Spring Heritage Banquet features Volga, S.D., agriculture writer and "recovering dairy farmer" Jerry Nelson.

The banquet is April 9 at Morris Area High School cafeteria.

Farm Bureau board members will be serving a grilled steak supper beginning at 5:30 p.m. at the cafeteria, and a program follows at 7 p.m. in the school auditorium featuring a presentation by the Morris Area FFA Ag Issues team on Social License and entertainment by Nelson.

Tickets are available at the door.

A fundraising auction will follow the program, with proceeds going to fund County Farm Bureau programs.

Nelson said he considers himself a "recovering dairy farmer," living with his wife, Julie, on the farm where Jerry's great-grandfather homesteaded 120 years ago. The Nelsons have been married for 29 years and have two grown sons.

About a dozen years ago, Nelson's area was enduring a spate of extremely wet weather. Out of sheer frustration, He wrote a spoof letter to his county agent asking if he knew of any cheap, effective herbicides that would control the cattails growing in Nelson's corn field. And while he was at it, perhaps the agent could suggest a way to get rid of the ducks and power boats infesting Nelson's fields.

The county agent suggested that Nelson publish the letter and thus was born "Dear County Agent Guy," Jerry's weekly newspaper column.

Nelson has since syndicated his column to numerous publications in the Midwest. In addition, he has had his work published by some of the nation's premier farm magazines including "Successful Farming," "Farm Journal" and "Progressive Farmer." Nelson has also provided several scripts for Garrison Keillor's radio program, "A Prairie Home Companion."

Nelson is currently employed as a staff writer and advertising salesman by the "Dairy Star," a biweekly newspaper that serves dairy farmers in the Midwest.