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Farmers help fellow grower with harvest

Farmers help fellow grower with harvest

More than 20 farmers brought combines, tractors and grain carts to Mike Tuinstra’s farm

By Diego Flammini
Staff Writer

A farming community came together to support another producer during a difficult time.

On Nov. 7, about 20 farmers and 50 volunteers from Wadena County, Minn., transported tractors, combines, grain carts and other equipment to Mike Tuinstra’s farm to help harvest about 200 acres of corn.

“People used to do this all the time back in the day,” Tuinstra told the Wadena Pioneer Journal.

The volunteers handled the harvest responsibilities while Mike watched from the sidelines.

The outpouring of support from the local ag community came after Mike’s wife of 13 years, Shanna, passed away on Nov. 2 at the age of 40.

An educator in the community, Shanna helped start an Ag in the Classroom program in Wadena County. Together with Mike, the two would visit schools to talk to students about farming and the role it plays in food production.

“Shanna really took that and ran with it,” said Craig Neal, president of the Wadena County Farm Bureau.

Craig and his brother Chris helped organize the community harvest.

Shanna was a farmer too.

The husband-wife duo would tackle harvest together, which allowed Mike to haul grain commercially to earn more income for the family, which includes their 13-year-old daughter Haylee.

“We’re a team together,” Mike told the Wadena Pioneer Journal. has contacted members of the Wadena County Farm Bureau to talk about the tight-knit nature of farming communities, especially in times of need.

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