Manifolds, Manolos & Bona Heinsohn

Dear Santa, I know it’s been some time since we last talked, but I really need you to come through for me this year.  After some pondering.  Soul searching.  And thoughtful introspection.  I’ve decided what I’d like this year is leadership from the nation’s top officeholder-elect.  And ear muffs.  Definitely ear muffs.  It is the Midwest after all. This November brought with it the Presidential Election.  An election that a whole 58 percent of the country’s 232 million voters actually voted in.  Fifty-eight percent.  The lowest turnout in two decades.  In comparison, 64 percent of the nation’s voters ventured to the polls in 2008. November also ushered in “emergency protests” after Donald Trump captured the Oval Office despite pollsters’ predictions that Democrat Hillary Clinton would win the nation’s top seat.  With the protests came both anger and fear.  Trump and his supporters w ...

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Ag Lit Bit by Diane Merrion

Season of Giving As we turn the calendar to December, our thoughts turn to the season of giving and we begin searching for that perfect gift for our loved ones.  It was so much easier when my kids were little as their wish lists were endless and fairly easy to satisfy.  First there was the Thomas the Tank Engine trains or Pokemon cards which progressed into the latest Game Boy games or PS1 games like NBA Live (Bulls vs. Lakers) to more mature gifts of the newest aftershave or clothes.  We’re at the point now where it’s not so much a gift that is desired, but an experience.  Perhaps a family trip or a new camera lens to help record memories and experiences.  We provided experiences when they were young including the annual family trip to a play in December, a visit to Christmas around the World, Marshall Field’s, Brookfield Zoo at night and the list went on.  The reality is that there was far more value in the experiences versus the gifts.  I am fortunate ...

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2017 Foundation Scholarship Deadline is February 17th

The Cook County Farm Bureau Foundation is proud to announce the 19th Annual Agricultural Scholarship Program.  The Cook County Farm Bureau Foundation is offering college students the opportunity to start or continue his/her higher education with a scholarship.  Last year, the Foundation provided ten scholarships ranging from $1,000.00 - $3,000 a piece. The Board will name the top applicant as the Howard Paarlberg Excellence in Agriculture Scholarship recipient.  The Foundation will award a scholarship (s) to college students pursuing agriculturally related fields of study.  The Conserv FS FFA Scholarship for $1,000 will also be offered to a High School Senior in an approved FFA Program. The Foundation Board has set the following criteria for the scholarship program… •        Applications are available at the Cook County Farm Bureau Foundation office located at 6438 Joliet Road in Countryside, Illinois.  We will also send applications u ...

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Annual Foundation Gala to be Held Saturday March 4th

Farming for our Future Gala… Sowing the Seeds of Greatness The Cook County Farm Bureau Board of Directors and Foundation Board have revamped the annual Membership Appreciation Banquet held each Fall into a full-blown Fundraiser with the Cook County Farm Bureau Foundation programming as the beneficiary. The funds raised will go to support the farm and food literacy efforts of the organization through ag in the classroom, college scholarships for member dependents, and our conversations with our urban friends about farm and food production. The exclusive event will feature an open bar with appetizers, filet mignon dinner, great music and dancing featuring the Belvedere’s, a drawdown with the potential of walking away with big-bucks, a silent and live auction, and games throughout the evening.  The event will be held at the spectacular facilities at Ruffled Feathers located in the easily accessible Lemont area. Earlybird discount pricing  of $100 per person saves 20% off of regularly pri ...

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Thank you!

Yesterday, Giving Tuesday provided the Cook County Farm Bureau® Foundation the opportunity to provide a glimpse of the financial and volunteer needs necessary for the Foundation to deliver on its Mission and Goal to teach urban kids, teachers, and families about farming and food through our Ag in the Classroom program, college scholarship program, internship program and many Foundation sponsored programs/activities.

We were humbled by the response and generosity of so many people. We want to publicly express our appreciation for the out pouring of support for our Farming for our Future Gala, donations to programming, and the gift of your time and talents.  We say “Thank you and Thank you again”.

For more information about the Cook County Farm Bureau Foundation, go to

Lastly, don’t forget to sign up for Amazon Smile and select Cook County Farm Bureau Foundation as your charity beneficiary.

Downwind by Bob Rohrer, CAE, FBCM, Manager

“a tribute to calluses and the people that earn them” My typical workday, following my drive into the Farm Bureau office, consists of some “heavy” lifting…I Push a pencil, move paper around, dictate stuff, peck on my laptop with my index finger, meet with members and staff, chat on the telephone, do some deep thinking…planning…writing, point at things to do, and file a lot of paper (those files are heavy when you save as much paper as I do). As I examine my hand and fingers, I am ashamed to admit that I see NO calluses. There are NO scratches and cuts, rough skin, broken nails.  I don’t feel like I am looking at “a working man’s hand”. Years ago, on the farm, I had working man’s hand. I was proud of those calluses. Today, as a weekend warrior, I usually attempt to correct this perceived weakness. I pack my weekend with projects and activities that require physical labor, rough hands, brawn, a strong back. A different ski ...

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Ag in the Classroom Summer Internship

We are now accepting applications for our 2017 Agriculture in the Classroom summer internship.  This position works extensively with children and adults throughout our summer programming.  If you are majoring in agriculture and have a passion for sharing your ag knowledge with others, consider this opportunity by visiting our website at:  Position is located in Countryside, IL from late May through early August.  

All Kids Should Learn about Farming & Farmers

Hello Friends –

Every morning, farmers from the Chicagoland area wake-up to care for their crops, livestock and horses, vegetables, and greenhouse facilities to feed and clothe your family and theirs.  The Cook County Farm Bureau Foundation helps bring knowledge and information about farming and food production that we take for granted to urban youth and families.

Please consider supporting the programming, scholarships, internships and farm experiences provided by the Foundation through your tax deductible donation. Go to for more information or donate today by clicking here.

Thank you for your support.

Give the Gift of Dining & Entertainment for a Cause!

Need a gift for someone that loves elegant dining, great musical entertainment and an opportunity to support a great cause?
Check out the Farming for our Future Gala to benefit the Cook County Farm Bureau® Foundation. The “fun”draiser is scheduled for Saturday, March 4, 2017 from 6 to 11:30 PM. Early bird tickets are only $100 per person and include an elegant filet mignon dinner, complimentary beverages throughout the evening, the Belvedere’s band, and many other fun activities. Click here for details.

Thank you for your support!

Fact or Fiction...

Fact or Fiction: Brown cows give chocolate milk

Fact or Fiction: Apples are a member of the Rose family

Fact or Fiction: The average cow gives 6 to 8 gallons of milk per day.

Please help us provide these farm facts and so many more about today’s farming and food system we call Agriculture by supporting the Cook County Farm Bureau Foundation sponsored programs. Click here for more information.

We also invite you to support the Foundations Fundraiser Farming for our Future Gala scheduled for Saturday, March 4 at Ruffled Feathers Country Club in Lemont, IL. Visit: for details. We thank you for your support!

Also, be sure to sign up for Amazon Smile and select Cook County Farm Bureau Foundation as your charity beneficiary.