Illinois State Fair Governor, Director, Fair Manager Images of fairgoers
August 11-20, 2006
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General Information

Press Releases

August 17, 2004


SPRINGFIELD, Ill.-Agriculture Day on Tuesday at the Illinois State Fair kicked off in a big way, as farm families from around the state where honored for their contributions to the Agriculture industry by the Illinois Department of Agriculture and other state leaders at the Ag Day Luncheon on the Director’s Lawn. Before a crowd of nearly 2000, 15 sesquicentennial farm families (out of 47 certified this past year), 42 centennial farm families (out of 158 certified), seven outstanding farm families, and one outstanding conservation farm family were honored at the Ag Day Luncheon.

Tractors of all sizes, makes, and years, many proudly displaying the American flag, drove past in the daily tractor parade marking the start of a big day of agriculture at the fair. Apple slushies and fresh produce from the farmers market was on hand as many entered for the event. Director of the Illinois Department of Agriculture Charles “Chuck” Hartke and Illinois Senate Representative Larry Walsh made award presentations and spoke of the progress and plans for the Illinois Agriculture industry.

Ogle County Producers Cade and Mar Lyn and Ned and Lyrah Bushnell from Walnut Creek Farms were the recipients of the Governor’s Conservation Farm Family of the Year Award. The Bushnell Farm Family from Stillman Valley, Ill., was a true conservation family from early on. The Bushnells, found the conservation benefits of terraces, grassed waterways, residue management, and contouring. Grassed waterways played a particularly large role in stormwater management for their operation. The family maintains more than 56 acres of grassed waterways to date.

The Illinois Farm Bureau Outstanding Farm Family was Matt and Laura Bennett from Windsor, IL who were recognized for their extraordinary accomplishments in farming and leadership. The Illinois Farm Bureau award was followed by the Illinois Farmers Union Outstanding Farm Family award that was presented to Wayne and Pat LaForge of New Holland, IL and the Illinois State Grange Outstanding Farm Family Award which was presented to Roger and Sharon Miller of Belvidere, IL. Nicholas and Tracie Stremlau from Mendota, IL received the National Farmers Organization of Illinois Outstanding Farm Family Award. Richard and Venita Baker & Family were recipients of the Illinois Pork Producers Association Outstanding Farm Family Award. The last farm family award went to Patrick and Dawn Fritz who were recognized with the Illinois Beef Associations Outstanding Farm Family Award.

The 2004 Illinois State Fair runs Aug. 13-22 in Springfield.

For more updated information and results on State Fair entertainment and activities, visit the website at

Events for Governor’s Day-Wednesday, August 18

8 a.m. Ayrshire Dairy Cattle Show Livestock Center
8 a.m. Spotted Swine Show Swine Barn
8 a.m. Yorkshire Swine Show Swine Barn
9 a.m. Alpine and LaMancha Goat Show Goat Barn
9 a.m. Suffolk Sheep Show Sheep Barn
9 a.m. Junior Dairy Brown Swiss Show Junior Livestock Building
1 p.m. Dorset Sheep Show Sheep Barn
1 p.m. Milking Shorthorn Dairy Cattle Show Livestock Center
6 p.m. Montadale Sheep Show Sheep Barn
6 p.m. Dance Group Talent Contest Illinois Building
7 p.m. Society Horse Show Coliseum
7 p.m. Superior Young Dairy Producer Livestock Center
7 p.m. Auto Race Promotions, Inc. Presents DUAL DEMO DERBY Multi Purpose Arena
8 p.m. Leann Rimes with Phil Vassar Grandstand