Families honoured for 100-year commitment to agriculture

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 July 11, 2013

Pioneering Alberta families who have farmed and ranched the same land for 100 years or more are being recognized by the Government of Alberta with Century Farm and Ranch Awards.

“We are proud to celebrate the legacy of Albertans who have dedicated their lives to agriculture and who have helped shape this province into what it is today,” said Verlyn Olson, Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development. “The strength and future success of our agriculture industry depends greatly on the hard work, ingenuity and determination of our farming families.”

Prior to the discovery of oil, agriculture was Alberta’s primary industry. Today, agriculture continues to be the province’s largest renewable industry, with more than 43,000 farms totalling 50.5 million acres.

Recipients of the Century Farm and Ranch Award are presented with a bronze plaque to commemorate their significant achievement. A total of 82 families are being recognized across the province this year. This includes 9 families who were recognized at an awards dinner in Lloydminster on July 10.

“This award prompted a family reunion which brought 75 of our family members from across Canada, the U.S and Ireland to the O’Kane homestead to proudly hang our plaque on the fence,” says award recipient Mary O'Kane Demers of Elk Point. “It was the crowning event of our weekend celebration and we added a hay rake wheel and marked the ground where the plaque is hung with stones – one from every locale we had travel from to be there for that day.”

Since the Century Farm and Ranch Awards began in 1993, a total have 1,440 families have received plaques.

Our government was elected to keep building Alberta, to live within its means and to fight to open new markets for Alberta’s resources. We will continue to deliver the responsible change Albertans voted for.

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Backgrounder: List of award recipients
Editor’s note: Photos from the Lloydminster event will posted on Flickr for media use. Interviews with families can be arranged.

Media inquiries may be directed to:
Lorraine Lynch
Alberta Agriculture and Rural Development


Century Farm and Ranch Family Award Recipients

Karry and Donna Bengston of Chauvin
Mary Carson of Warspite
Mary O’Kane Demers of Elk Point
David and Mary Flint of Paradise Valley
Nick and Stella Markiwsky and Ken Markiwsky (son) of Myrnam
Dale and Darlene McQuid of Vermilion
Alan and Denise Rogan of Vermilion
Gilles Roy (Royboy Farms Ltd.) of Falher
Wayne Watson of Chauvin

A full listing of 2012 Century Farm and Ranch Family award recipients can be found on the website at: http://www.agric.gov.ab.ca/app68/centuryfarm
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Media inquiries may be directed to:
Lorraine Lynch
Alberta Agriculture and Rural Development

To call toll-free within Alberta dial 310-0000.
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For more information about the content of this document, contact Kelly Bernard.
This information published to the web on July 10, 2013.
Last Reviewed/Revised on June 27, 2018.