High Interest Level in Farmfest Candidate Forums

FARMFEST Forum Media Release

For More Information Contact :     Kent Thiesse, FARMFEST Forum Coordinator

(507-381-7960)  or  kent.thiesse@minnstarbank.com



IDEAg FARMFEST will feature an exciting line-up of Candidate Forums in 2018. The Forums will include candidates for Minnesota Governor, two U.S. Senate seats, and for Minnesota’s First, Second, Sixth, and Seventh Districts. This is a very intriguing line-up of Candidate Forums, and the Forums are quite timely, considering Minnesota’s statewide primary election is the following week, according to Kent Thiesse, FARMFEST Forum Coordinator. The Forums will be held August 7, 8, and 9, in the Wicks Buildings FARMFEST Center, near the center of the show site. FARMFEST is located at the Gilfillan Estate, 7 miles southeast of Redwood Falls, Minnesota, on Highway #67.

A highlight will be the “Minnesota Governor Candidate’s Forum” on Wednesday, August 8, at 10:30 AM, which will feature the five major candidates in Minnesota’s open gubernatorial race. Confirmed candidates include two Republican candidates: former Governor Tim Pawlenty and Hennepin County Commissioner Jeff Johnson, the endorsed candidate; and three DFL candidates: Congressman Tim Walz, Attorney General Lori Swanson, and Rep. Erin Murphy, the endorsed candidate. The Forum will be broadcast live on WCCO radio, and candidate questions at the Forum will be asked by WCCO morning show hosts Dave Lee and Blois Olson. The questions will be derived from various agriculture and rural leaders and will focus on variety of issues affecting the agriculture industry and rural Minnesota.

FARMFEST will host two “U.S. Senate Candidate Forums”. The first Forum is scheduled for Tuesday, August 7, at 10:30 AM, and will feature incumbent Democratic U.S. Senator Tina Smith, along with her challengers, State Senator Karin Housley and Bob Anderson, both Republican candidates, and DFL candidate Richard Painter. The second U.S. Senate Candidate Forum will be held on Thursday, August 9, at 10:30 AM, with incumbent Democratic U.S. Senator Amy Klobuchar participating, along with her challenger, Republican Jim Newberger. All major U.S. Senate candidates are confirmed to participate in the FARMFEST Forums. A panel of agriculture media representatives and leaders of farm organizations will pose questions to the candidates on a variety of issues affecting farmers and rural families.

The “Congressional Candidate’s Forum on Agriculture and Rural Issues” will be held on Tuesday, August 6, at 1:15 PM. The following Congressional candidates from Minnesota’s First, Second, Sixth, and Seventh Congressional Districts are confirmed to participate in the Forum: Seventh District Congressman Collin Peterson (D), and his challenger Dave Hughes (R); Sixth District Congressman Tom Emmer (R) and his challenger Ian Todd (D); First District candidates Jim Hagedorn (R), Carla Nelson (R) and Dan Feehan (D); and Second District candidate Angie Craig (D). Second District Congressman Jason Lewis has also been invited to participate. Moderators will pose questions to the candidates on a variety of issues affecting agriculture and rural communities, which will originate from agriculture leaders representing various farm organizations and commodity groups

Another feature educational Forum on Wednesday, August 8, at 1:15 PM is titled: “Protecting Minnesota’s Water Resources …… Public Concern and Landowner Implications”. The Forum Panel will include Tom Landwehr, Minnesota DNR Commissioner; Warren Formo, Executive Director of the MN Ag Water Resource Coalition; State Senator Bill Weber; Thom Peterson, MN Farmers Union Government Relations Director; and Amber Hanson Glaeser, MN Farm Bureau Director of Public Policy. The Forum will focus on a variety of water quality issues, possible solutions, and potential legislation that could affect farmers and landowners.

Another special Forum on Thursday, August 9, at 9:00 AM, is titled: “Resources for Farm Families in Challenging Times”, which is very timely, considering the current financial struggles being faced by Minnesota farm families. The panel will include David Bau, University of MN Extension Educator, Mary Nell Preisler, State Director of the MN Farmer-Lender Mediation Program, David Hesse, MN Dept. of Ag Farm Advocate, Ryan Roles, Director of the MN Rural Finance Authority, and Meg Moynihan, Programs Administrator with the MN Dept. of Ag.

FARMEST will also feature several special Forums during the 3-day event. The first will be held on Tuesday, August 7, at 9:00 AM, and is titled: “World Trade and Its Impact on U.S. Supply and Demand”, featuring a presentation by Kent Beadle, Director of Risk Consulting for CHS Hedging. The second special Forum is scheduled for Wednesday, August 8, at 3:00 PM, and is titled: “Answering Your B20 Questions Before Harvest”. Panel members include State Representative Paul Anderson, Mike Youngerberg, MN Soybean Growers Assn., and Ron Jessen, CHS diesel fuel expert. Another special Forum will be “Farm Succession Planning”, presented by Farm Bureau Financial Services, on Tuesday, August 7, at 3:00 PM.

Mark Schultz, Commodity Marketing Analyst with Northstar Commodities, will provide a “Grain and Livestock Marketing Update” at 9:00 AM, on Wednesday, August 8, at 9:00 AM, during the free pancake breakfast sponsored by MN Farm Bureau, which will occur from 8:00-10:00 AM. A free sweet corn feed sponsored by the Minnesota Corn Growers Assn. will occur Tuesday, August 7 during the noon hour at FARMFEST. The Linder Farm Network Noon Show will be held each day at FARMFEST from 12:00-1:00 PM, featuring many special guests each day. The Noon Show on Wednesday, August 8, will feature the naming of the 2018 MN State Pork Ambassadors.

A FARMFEST tradition will continue on Thursday, August 9, at 1:15 PM, with the annual “Farm Family of the Year” Recognition Program, which will feature Eric Kaler, President of the Unversity of Minnesota. Approximately 80 farm families from throughout Minnesota have been selected at the county level for this special recognition. This event is jointly sponsored by FARMFEST and the University of Minnesota.

For more information on the Forums, exhibits, and other highlights at FARMFEST, please refer to the IDEAg FARMFEST website at:   http://www.ideaggroup.com/ or contact Kent Thiesse, FARMFEST Forum Coordinator (507-381-7960) or (kent.thiesse@minnstarbank.com).


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