The Dairy Center Connection.

Hi, there!

Summer in Iowa is in full swing, along with my internship at the Northeast Iowa Dairy & Agriculture Foundation! I have loved every minute of connecting with consumers during farm tours, meeting many new faces and helping to plan exciting events. Growing up in Fort Atkinson, Iowa, and attending school at NICC, I have always been familiar with the Dairy Center and took many classes within the building my freshman and sophomore years of college. However, I never truly knew everything the Foundation had to offer or how unique this facility really is. As cool as I thought it was to have cows in the same building as my college classes, this internship has allowed me to see the many wonderful ways the Foundation is working to showcase the dairy industry and help model sustainable agriculture practices. As I prepare for my senior year at Iowa State University as an agriculture communications major, I am thankful for the special people and life experiences that helped guide me toward a career in agriculture. Although my dream at five years old was to be a farmer, I think working to help farmers and educate the public about the amazing world of agriculture might be the next best thing.

Kayla Burke
Communications Intern, Northeast Iowa Dairy & Agriculture Foundation

What's Happening at Iowa's Dairy Center

A Different Kind of Cow/Calf Pair Join Iowa’s Dairy Center 

Swing by Iowa’s Dairy Center to see the newest cow/calf pair to join the herd. The cow and calf were sculpted by Norma “Duffy” Lyon, who sculpted butter cows at the Iowa State Fair for more than 40 years. This set of life-size cow statues were once placed outside of Toledo. After the derecho caused significant damages in 2020, the cows were repaired and rehomed to Iowa’s Dairy Center. Thank you to the Lyon Family and the City of Toledo for donating these cow statues. You can see the statues for yourself at the main entrance of the Dairy Center. 

Food Trucks & Moo-vie Night on the Farm Will Provide Fun Summer Entertainment

Friday, Aug. 19  l  5-10:30 p.m.  l  Iowa’s Dairy Center 

Before summer comes to a close, Iowa’s Dairy Center welcomes the public to join them for a family-friendly evening. Food Trucks & Moo-vie Night on the Farm will be hosted on Friday, August 19, beginning at 5 p.m. A variety of local food trucks will be serving delicious food which will be available for purchase until 9 p.m. At this time, guests will be invited to find a place to sit on the lawn to enjoy the movie Barnyard, which will be shown on an outdoor projector screen. Free popcorn will be provided with the movie. 

Food Trucks & Moo-vie Night on the Farm is a weather permitting event. Guests are encouraged to check the Northeast Iowa Dairy & Agriculture Foundation Facebook event for weather related updates and other information. Be sure to remember a lawn chair and join us for a moo-vie under the stars. 

Breakfast on the Farm Serves Record Numbers

Nearly 1,200 attendees enjoyed a delicious waffle breakfast followed by a morning of fun at Breakfast on the Farm on Saturday, June 25. Attendees were able to see every aspect of the working dairy farm including the milking parlor, free stall barn, calf barn and robotic milking machines. Not only did this give visitors that chance to interact with the cows, but also to see some of the newest technologies in the dairy industry. 

Along with tours around the farm, guests also had the opportunity to milk a cow by hand, meet a number of dairy royalty and learn more about Iowa agriculture. According to a study done at Michigan State University, many consumers are unsure where to turn to find answers about where their food is grown. With only two percent of Americans living on farms today, it is important to provide fun and educational ways for the public to be involved with agriculture.

Registration Open for Artificial Insemination Class

Aug. 9-11, Nov. 8-10 | 9 a.m.-3 p.m. | Iowa’s Dairy Center

This is a three-day hands-on class for those who wish to artificially inseminate their own cattle or gain experience to work for others. The class will cover all aspects of bovine reproduction, from anatomy and hormones to heat detection. Students have actual insemination practice on cattle at Iowa's Dairy Center. The minimum age requirement for this class is 16. The class is taught by Select Sires.



NICC Student Earns Dairy Royalty Title After Beating Cancer

While Jordyn Schumacher was a first year college student studying dairy science and agriculture business at Northeast Iowa Community College, she was diagnosed with stage 4 Hodgkin Lymphoma. Growing up on a dairy farm near Plainview, Minn., Schumacher enjoyed helping with everyday farm chores, but was forced to slow down after her diagnosis. While receiving treatments, she continued her school work online and made the dean’s list both semesters of her first year. In April, Schumacher received her first set of good news after learning she was crowned Wabasha County’s dairy princess, a title she had wanted her entire life. Her second set of good news came later in June, when a scan showed she no longer had any signs of cancer present. Read More.

Save the Date for NICC Fall Fest

Thursday, Sept. 8 | 5-8 p.m. | Calmar Campus

Mark your calendars for the annual Northeast Iowa Community College Fall Fest. Enjoy an evening of music, inflatables, rides, and carnival games. Some crowd favorites in the past have included the US National Guard rock climbing wall, warrior jousting, dunk tank, kettle corn, cotton candy, and the Moo Mobile. 

Dinner will be a free-will donation. Tickets for carnival games and inflatables can be purchased for 25 cents each and most activities only require one or two tickets. Fall Fest will take place in the center of main campus. Read more.  

Agriculture and Animal Science Program Preview Day Scheduled

Friday, Nov. 4 | 10 a.m.-12:15 p.m. | Iowa’s Dairy Center

Interested in pursuing a career in agriculture? Check out the Agriculture and Animal Sciences Program Preview Day in Calmar. Speak with professors to learn more about the Agriculture Business, Agronomy, Animal Science, Beef Science, Dairy Science, and other programs that are offered at NICC. Read more


Dairy Profile: Jennifer Bentley

Jennifer Bentley serves on the board of the Northeast Iowa Dairy & Agriculture Foundation. Bentley grew up on a fourth and fifth generation family dairy farm in Mitchell County, which is still operating today. Bentley works for Iowa State University Extension and Outreach as a Dairy Field Specialist. She and her husband, Noah, live in Castalia with their two children, Owen and Addison. In her free time, Bentley enjoys spending time with family and friends, riding ATVs, gardening and running. One day, she hopes to travel to Australia to experience their landscapes, scenery and dairy industry. Bentley finds the Dairy Foundation to be special because, “it provides a unique opportunity for learning as a consumer, student, future farmer, current farmer, industry, and everything in between! It provides a place for those passionate about dairy and agriculture to come together and move the industry forward.” She is not only a great benefit to our team, but to the dairy industry as a whole!

Industry News

One last hurrah for National Dairy Month in Northeast Iowa. Read more.

Available to Midwest Dairy farmers, dairy groups and agricultural organizations, Undeniably Dairy Grants help turn great ideas for promoting the dairy community to consumers into reality. Learn more

Calendar of Events

Visit our website to see all upcoming events and continuing education courses.

Northeast Iowa Dairy & Agriculture Foundation Board Meeting
July 22 | 12 p.m. | Iowa's Dairy Center

Bovine Artificial Insemination Class
Aug. 9-11 | 9 a.m.-3 p.m. | Iowa’s Dairy Center

Agriculture and Animal Sciences Program Preview
Nov. 4 | 10 a.m. - 12:15 p.m. | Iowa’s Dairy Center

Bovine Artificial Insemination Class
Nov. 8-10 | 9 a.m.-3 p.m. | Iowa’s Dairy Center


Northeast Iowa Dairy & Agriculture Foundation 
1527 Hwy. 150 S., Calmar, Iowa
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