Shawano County Brunch on the Farm: Heidi Pettis
Brunch on the Farm-Tractor pulling a group of attendees


For all the dairy lovers out there, June is the best time of year! Every year, Wisconsin celebrates June Dairy Month with a variety of activities that help to raise awareness for the dairy industry and provide education for those in the community. GreenStone employees volunteer their time and expertise to this cause each year!  


In Shawano County, the community gathered for Brunch on the Farm. This year, 4,500 people were welcomed to Triple D Dairy, LLC for brunch, a farm tour, and educational kids' activities. Triple D Dairy, proudly owned by the Viergutz family, hosted the event while also celebrating their 150th year family farm anniversary.  


“What we truly enjoy about this event is the amount of people who attend. I was amazed by the number of people who came out to see life from our perspective here on the farm. We really want to make sure each person has the opportunity to see the cows and learn more about agricultural opportunities,” explained Connie Viergutz.  


For an event this large, months of preparation are the key to success. Heidi Pettis, a lead appraiser for GreenStone, has been on the Shawano County Brunch on the Farm Committee for several years. Starting in January, she helps with planning the activities, and is a member of the donations/advertising committee. Donations are extremely important to the success of this event each year. Heidi manages the donation letters, tracks the monetary donations, and helps organize the overall event. Along with providing volunteers, GreenStone provides the plates for brunch. In addition, other businesses and individuals donate an array of products and/or monetary donations. 


The Brunch on the Farm event is an entire morning of activities beginning with a 5K, a church service, and of course a delicious brunch! While the brunch is being served, the community can tour the barns, visit the cows, meet a few calves, and see the tractors and farm equipment. Volunteers and donations are truly what make this event possible each year. Shawano County Dairy Promotions and Culver’s worked together to provide free ice cream for all attendees to enjoy after brunch! And the local University of Wisconsin-Extension Office coordinated volunteers to help with the educational activities. Local 4-H clubs, FFA chapters, community members, and different businesses also provide volunteers, resulting in hundreds of people providing a helping hand in the community. 


Heidi isn’t the only GreenStone employee involved. Several Wisconsin employees volunteer annually at the event to serve ice cream, manage the 5K, and to take tickets for the 4,500 people in line for brunch. 


This event is a great outreach opportunity for the dairy industry. “At this event, we get people active on the dairy farm where they can legitimately meet a farmer, see a cow, and it provides an opportunity for people to learn about agriculture when they have had no previous experience with it. A lot of the educational activities are agriculturally focused, so kids and adults are learning about where their food comes from and understanding the importance of a farmer. Some of these kids have never seen a calf in person before, so it’s a very eye-opening experience for them,” explained Heidi.  


Networking is another positive; farmers are able to tour a different operation and see how others are doing the same job. This tour included a double nine parlor milking system, and DeLaval, a dairy product/promotions company, provided an onsite trailer demonstrating robotic milkers.  


Shawano County Brunch on the Farm is held the last weekend in June and is hosted by a different family each year. To learn more about this event, and future events, visit Shawano County Farm Bureau - Brunch on the Farm ( For a list of statewide brunches visit National Dairy Month - Dairy Farmers of Wisconsin (  To learn more about how our GreenStone employees are making a difference in their communities, visit Open Fields Blog | GreenStone FCS.  




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