Joel and Karen Schuiteman

04-21-2009 in Good Farm Neighbor

Celebrating good neighbors was top priority for nearly 100 neighbors, friends and community members on Monday.  That is when WHO Radio, Iowa Department of Agriculture and Land Stewardship and Coalition to Support Iowa’s Farmers rolled into Sioux Center to recognize Joel and Karen Schuiteman as the April Wergin Good Farm Neighbor Award winners.

Karen welcomed folks at the door with warm hugs and received congratulations from all who came to share in the celebration.  Al and Lynne Bloemendaal were quick to make sure everyone knew how appreciative they were that the Schuitemans were their neighbors.

Al said, “Lynne is not active in the farm and when I was deployed to Afganistan I had a very short window to find someone to do my field work.  I had put an ad in the paper for someone to rent my ground when Joel came down and said he would farm it for me.”  Lynne added that it was nice to have someone they trusted managing the farm work.  “Joel took care of the planning, seed purchase, planting, everything.  I didn’t have to think about it at all and he didn’t ask for anything in return.”

Included in the celebration were Joel and Karen’s daughters Lindsay, Kari and Nicole.

The Wergin Good Farm Neighbor Award is presented ten times a year to deserving livestock farmers.  To nominate your neighbor email Tess Capps at

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