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DARLENE AND CURTIS BALLARD of rural Ogema were named as the 2011 Valley Farmer and Homemaker of the Year for Becker County. The award is given annually by the Minnesota Red River Valley Development Association. A total of 16 families from 14 Minnesota counties were honored at the Minnesota RRVDA banquet in Crookston on March 14.

2011 Valley Farmer & Homemaker

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Since purchasing their farm in rural Ogema almost 40 years ago in the fall of 1972, Curtis and Darlene Ballard have seen many changes.


The home where they raised their five children is now inhabited by daughter and son-in-law Angie and Tim Lehrke, and their three children.

Curt and Darlene now live in a comfortable two-year-old home atop a hillside that overlooks the farm, less than half a mile away.

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Vicki Gerdes
Staff writer at Detroit Lakes Newspapers for the past 14 years, currently editor of the entertainment and community pages as well as obituaries. Living in DL with my cat, Smokey.
(218) 844-1454