Community Agriculture Alliance: Routt County’s Centennial Farms and Ranches program
Emily Katzman and Arianthé Stettner
For Steamboat Pilot & Today
The Colorado Centennial Farms program was established in 1986 to recognize the important contribution of agriculture to Colorado’s history and economy. We all know how family farms and ranches, historic barns and other agricultural resources are disappearing throughout the nation.
The ability of a family to withstand the pressures of growth, changes in the economy, farming methods and climate to stay on their farm or ranch property for generations deserves recognition and our appreciation.
Their stewardship preserves an important part of Colorado’s history and cultural landscapes. As of 2017, 550 farms and ranches across the state have been designated as Centennial Farms. The oldest Centennial Farm is the Ortega Farm in San Luis, established in 1851, long before Colorado became a state.
History Colorado and the U.S. Department of Agriculture are seeking eligible applicants for the 2019 program. To qualify as a Centennial Farm, the property must be a working farm or ranch, have a minimum of 160 acres or gross at least $1,000 in annual sales if smaller and be held by the same family continuously for 100 years or more.
The Colorado Centennial Farms Program was the first in the nation to also give a Historic Structures Award to families who have successfully preserved historic buildings on their farms and ranches.
An awards ceremony is held in late August at the Colorado State Fair in Pueblo. Honorees receive a sign to display on their property and a certificate signed by Gov. Jared Polis and other state officials. We encourage eligible ranch families in Routt County to apply by the May 31 deadline.
In Routt County, we are proud to be the home of ten Centennial Ranches, several of which are also listed on the Routt County Register of Historic Properties.
• Summer Ranch near Sidney, established in 1889
• Crags Ranch south of Hayden, established in 1895
• Hitchens Overlook Ranch near Milner, established in 1886
• Zehner Ranch near Hayden, established in 1901
• Soash Ranch near Steamboat Springs, dating from 1904
• Mountain View Ranch, established in 1907
• Stanko Ranch, established in 1907
• Hogue Ranch, established in 1917
• Redmond Ranch near the Flat Tops Wilderness Area, established in 1917
• Sullivan Ranch, oldest, dating from 1884, with property in Routt, Rio Blanco, and Moffat counties.
Apply by May 31 at historycolorado.org/centennial-farms-ranches.
Emily Katzman works as executive director of Historic Routt County and Arianthé Stettner serves on Historic Routt County board of directors.
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