Tractors are more than Machinery at the Toppen Farm

Every tractor has a story! That is why Todd Toppen collects model toy tractors that tell the story of his family’s farm over the years.

IMG_3157Todd enjoys restoring model toy tractors. His goal was to find all the tractors he had when he was growing up and he is close to achieving this goal. He has the first tractor that he ever drove, the first tractor his dad purchased, and many more to represent monumental moments on their farm. It was great to hear the stories behind each one and how he customized them to tell a story about their family history.

The Toppen family has been farming for more than 100 years in Horace, North Dakota. Todd and his family farm the same ground that his parents purchased in 1958. They raise wheat and soybeans on their farm.

“There was never any question I wanted to farm when I got older,” said Todd.

Todd farms with his wife, LeAnn, and their son, Kyle. LeAnn and Todd met in high school. They went to their high school homecoming dance and have been together ever since. LeAnn also grew up in North Dakota in a family involved in agriculture. Her grandparents and her dad was Case tractor dealer and diesel mechanic. In addition to working on the farm, Leanne works at a local church.

IMG_3263Kyle, who graduated from the University of North Dakota with a degree in accounting, is active in the day-to-day farming operation. Once the crop is harvested, Kyle spends the winter months working as a farm tax accountant. Kyle says he has three busy seasons throughout the year planting, harvest, and tax season!

While Todd, LeAnn, and Kyle are the primary operators on the farm, their two daughters, husbands and children live in the area and often visit the farm to pitch in. “Farming is what brings our family together,” says LeAnn.

By talking with the family, you can hear the passion in their voices they have for farming but it hasn’t always been easy.

“Not everyone can be a farmer, it takes a very special person.” says LeAnn.

IMG_3140In North Dakota a wide variety of crops including wheat, barley, corn, soybeans, sugar beets, and sunflowers are grown. The Toppens have raised all of these crops over the years which makes seed sales a challenging part of their operation.

When they aren’t working on the farm, the Toppens enjoy spending time at the lake with their children and their five grandchildren. The entire family goes to Pelican Lake almost every weekend during the summer.

Todd and LeAnn really enjoy having their family close to spend time with their grandkids.

Todd stated, “There isn’t much you don’t like about being a grandparent!”

They also enjoy attending their grandkids’ school and sporting activities.

IMG_3289Todd became a Latham® dealer three years ago and grows soybeans for our company. He became familiar with Latham through a local seed company and then decided to become a dealer. Todd says he chose Latham Hi-Tech Seeds because the company is known for producing quality products, respects their employees, and provides valuable customer service. He also really enjoys how accessible the staff and owners are too!

Family is very important to the Toppens and keeps them moving forward on their operation. We are lucky to have them as a part of our Latham family!

 

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Baked Corn

Ingredients:

1 can whole kernel corn

1 can cream style corn

2 eggs, beaten

1 C sour cream

8 T butter

1 box Jiffy cornbread mix

1/2 t. salt

1/4 t. pepper

1 T sugar

2 T chopped onion, optional

1 t. paprika, optional

Pour mixture in oiled 1 1/2 quart casserole. Sprinkle with paprika. Bake at 350 degrees F for one hour. (Recipe may be doubled and baked for 1 1/2 hour).