Join us for Follow the Farmstead! The second annual event will connect consumers to the farms that sustain us—locally and nationally.
CONNECT with the farming community at the second annual Follow the Farmstead—an inspiring, family-friendly event dedicated to showcasing area farms.
EDUCATE—Learn what it takes to run a successful farm, both large and small. Get answers to questions, watch demonstrations, and interact with farmers, getting a true sense of Central Illinois farming.
ENGAGE with local farmers as they showcase high-tech equipment, farm animals and hands-on activities. This captivating event will highlight the many facets of farm life.
PARTICIPATING FARMS & FACILITIES:
Agrible | 2021 S. First St., #110, Champaign
The focus of Agrible™ is to provide farmers and agricultural companies with easy-to-use and innovative products to improve production. Utilizing analytics tools, they deliver field-specific data and forecasts on yield, nitrogen, fieldwork recommendations, spraying conditions, potential pest problems, and more, to help with decision-making on the farm.
At this stop, visitors will be able to learn more about technology used to obtain data and how it is applied to help farmers make more informed decisions. Products that are offered by Agrible™will be explained and why they are significant to the success of farming. Learn more about UAV’s (Unmanned Ariel Vehicle), data collection technology and how this company impacts the future of agriculture.
Current customers of Agrible™include independent growers, software developers, soil test laboratories, crop consultants, insurance agencies, commodities companies, traders, and major ag chemical companies developing seed technologies and new production methods. Additionally, the company performs big data agronomic projects in over 80 countries.
Autumn Berry Inspired and Green Island Farm Collective | 2314 N. High Cross Rd., Urbana
Autumn Berry Inspired utilizes the fruit of an intentionally introduced exotic tree, the autumn olive, to make delicious food. The autumn olive has become a part of the rural landscape of Central Illinois, but many believe it is too aggressive and crowds out other species. The tree produces a small, red berry that mammals and birds love to eat, and they spread the autumn olive seeds far and wide. Autumn Berry Inspired has found a delicious way to control and utilize this plentiful resource: they harvest the tasty and highly nutritious berries, utilizing them for fruit leathers, jam and other delicious dishes.
Also on the 30 acre property, discover the Green Island Farm Collective, developing food for their enjoyment, food security and resilience. This group of six friends, with a fascination for plants and natural systems, came together to grow fresh produce and are guided by the principles of permaculture and sustainable land stewardship.
Barnhart Prairie Nature Preserve | 1413 E. Old Church Rd., Urbana
The Barnhart Prairie Restoration is a prairie reconstruction located about 2 miles south of Urbana in Champaign County. The Barnhart Family owns 91.9 acres or more and the Champaign County Soil and Water Conservation District owns 8.1 acres of this wonderful restoration. The prairie harbors numerous types of native plants and animals, with the greatest assortment of conservative plants found on the oldest restorations. A breeding population of the state-threatened Franklin’s ground squirrel occurs here, which qualifies the site as a nature preserve, At this stop, visitors will be able to tour the prairie and discover the history if the Barnhart family and their dedication to represent what land in the area of east-central Illinois might have looked like when the settlers came.
Birkey's Farm Store | 2202 S. High Cross Rd., Urbana
Tours from 9:00 a.m.–Noon
Birkey’s Farm Store serves Champaign County farmers providing service on Case IH and Case Construction equipment. Machinery is an important part of the agricultural industry to efficiently maintain farm ground and crops. At this stop, visitors will be able to see machinery up close and have the ability to learn more about modern farm equipment.
Birkey's has been in business for over 60 years with a focus on serving the agricultural community. They serve the Illinois communities of Annawan, Bloomington, Galesburg, Gibson City, Henry, Hoopeston, Macomb, Mattoon, Oakland, Polo, Prophetstown, Urbana, and Williamsport, IN. Birkey's also operates four Case Construction Equipment dealerships and their administrative offices are located in Champaign, IL.
Pheasant Ridge Farms of Urbana | 1128 County Road 1500 E., Urbana
Pheasant Ridge Farms (formerly BE Farms) specializes in sustainability, organic production, and land stewardship. They grow about 19 acres of Christmas trees and a couple of acres of organic (not certified) produce. They offer a CSA that starts June 19th and goes for 16 weeks. Their products can be found at the Tuesday market downtown Champaign and the Urbana Market at the Square on Saturdays, as well as market at the farm on Sundays, which is also their pick up day for the CSA. While on the farm, you can see the goats being raised as well as chickens who produce the eggs sold as part of the CSA.
University of Illinois Beef Farm | 4900 S. Race St., Urbana
Tours start on the hour at 9:00, 10:00 and 11:00 a.m. and at 1:00 p.m.
The University of Illinois Beef Farm practices the University mission through teaching, research, and outreach. With a large amount of Animal Science courses, the university utilizes the beef farm for their facility and livestock. Classes include: sheep production, beef production, working with farm animals, intro to animal sciences, and various animal evaluation classes; the U of I Beef Farm hires interns and student workers to gain experience while learning.
The beef farm is faculty driven, they develop the program and the beef farm implements the research. Most research is conducted in the areas of nutrition, livestock management and reproduction. Along with other key roles, the beef farm has one of the nation’s largest facilities to measure individual animal intake and has a state of the art metabolism research facility to measure rumen fermentation, digestibility and methane production. The beef farm supports outreach programs through Extension and hosts tours/meetings for industry relevant organizations to conduct applied research.