The Prairie Idea Exchange project has four parts: 1) a gathering of economic development professionals; 2) reporting in Dakotafire magazine; 3) community input—online, on postcards, on our forum page (www.pie4.us ), and in person at a Dakotafire Café event, 4) and with a final report in the magazine that reflects the feedback.
Here’s what we learned on the topic of agriculture and communities from www.pie4.us  and the Dakotafire Café in Langford:
What are you noticing about the connection between ag and community where you live?
“Large farms DO contribute and help small communities thrive. Large farmers and their hired help live in the small towns, shop in the small towns, partake in community celebrations, send kids to the local school, attend school events and attend local churches. The large farmer may purchase in bulk, but it is from the local co-ops in several communities. This helps keep jobs in local communities and helps the co-ops prosper and pay dividends which go back into the local communities. The large farmer delivers grain to the local elevators, ethanol plants and soybean plants, having the same results in the local communities as the purchases have.” —imafarmer
I feel the biggest need for better connection between ag and communities is:
“Effective communication and research.” —Vicki Voorhees, Lake City
“Effective communication.” —Roger Voorhees, Lake City
“I feel a huge problem with communication.” —Café participant
I pledge to become involved or take action by:
“Try to come up with a plan for more opportunities for people to come tour.” —Café participant
“Keep taking steps to get ag back in the school.” —Warren Symens, Amherst
“Getting a group together to discuss the future of our country and community.” —Vicki Voorhees, Lake City
“Starting a conversation with Britton business leaders.” —Roger Voorhees, Lake City
“Try to be more educated.” —Café participant
“Support local organizations, get involved in community organizations and volunteer more.” —D. Nelson, Langford
“Promoting agriculture to youth.” —Matt Nelson, Langford
Want to add your own ideas?
The conversation continues at www.pie4.us .