MEET THE FARMERS

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Mariah Dale-Anderson

The thinker who keeps it real

Mariah grew up in the hills of deep southern Illinois and was very active in 4-H and FFA as a youth. That involvement sparked a passion to work in the agriculture industry and also introduced her to a young man from northern Illinois. Mariah takes the lead on all marketing for the farm and often speaks to groups and organizations about the farm and her favorite topics - branding, social media, and marketing. She graduated from Illinois State University with a degree in Agriculture Communications but took a different path to working in agriculture research right out of college. It was her passion for serving and empowering others that allowed her to do a complete 360 early in her career. Mariah has seventeen years of experience working in both nonprofit and for-profit sectors. Even though she has a diverse resume, working on the farm has been her most challenging and rewarding job of all. In 2022 she traded in her high-heels and blazers for ballcaps and boots when she left fulltime corporate life for fulltime farm life. Even though she left her corporate gig, her professional experiences continue to influence how she approaches the business operations and marketing for the farm. Because Mariah has a talent for creating unique and memorable experiences, her true passion is curating experiences that complement the bounty of their harvest and at the same time, develop a deeper love and appreciation of their farm. Her favorite job on the farm is hand selecting the 200+ unique varieties of fall mums that they grow each year. Often the one who'd rather be behind the scenes and keeping the train on the tracks, Mariah appreciates the peaceful moments at the end of a busy day when her and Greg sit on the porch and take in the beauty of a central Illinois sunset.

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Greg Anderson

The talker who gets the job done​

Greg grew up on a fresh produce and pumpkin farm near Leland, and like Mariah, was very active in 4-H and FFA as a youth. His blue and gold FFA jacket allowed him to broaden his experiences and perspectives outside his small community and eventually led him to meet a brown eyed girl from southern Illinois. It was growing up visiting and working alongside his uncle and grandpa at his grandparent's farm where Greg became a true farmer at heart. Even though Greg has a degree in Agriculture Business Management, he has always preferred working the ground than going to an office. This passion led him to thirteen years of hands-on working experience in the agriculture research sector. An entrepreneur by nature, Greg operated his own specialty crop operation and landscaping businesses while in high school. In addition to working full time on our farm, his passion for helping others be successful led him to start Triple M Seed, a certified Becks Hybrids seed business. With his warn and friendly nature, Greg often turns a first-time customer of our farm into a farm ambassador. Greg manages the production side of our farm. He often jokes that Mariah is the boss while he's the grunt labor of the operation. He leads our seasonal farm team and has a natural ability to motivate them with his pep talks and "farm challenges" during the hottest of summer days. Greg is passionate about mentoring youth and paying it forward. Working on the farm for our young employees is more often a learning and growing experience than a summer job and that's how Greg likes it. Even though farming has its ups and downs, what Greg enjoys the most is working side by side with Mariah and watching their passions intertwine for complimenting each other and growing their farm business.

MEET THE FARM DOG

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Lucy Lulu Anderson

Farm Boss Dog & Welcome Committee  

Lucy joined the farm in October of 2017 after a short stay at the DeWitt County Animal Shelter/Second Chance for Pets in Clinton. After her adoption, she quickly learned that she had some big paw prints to fill, left by her predecessors Levi & Laney Lu, our original furry farm hands. We don't know much about her past before joining the farm, but we're blessed to have adopted a shelter dog that loves our farm and visitors as much as we do. We often joke that she thinks every farm visitor is here to see her. Despite her big stature and bellowing bark, this goofy girl lives for greeting visitors with her smiling face and wagging tail. Don't fret when you meet her. She'll be eager to escort you to a two-legged, farm staff member or show you around the farm. If you’re kind to oblige, she’d love a good pet on the head or scratch behind the ears. Just be prepared that she loves giving slobbery dog kisses in return, especially to those her own height.