Pa. Holstein Convention honors members

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LANCASTER, Pa. — The Pennsylvania Holstein Convention was in Lancaster March 1-3.

During the convention, the Pennsylvania Holstein Association inducted Vincent and Juliet Wagner and Melvin G. Peifer into the hall of fame.

The award recognizes an individual or couple for their achievements and contributions to the Holstein dairy industry as well as their involvement and leadership in other agricultural and community activities.

The Wagners

Vincent and Juliet Wagner established Ju-Vindale Holsteins in 1976, buying 22 cows and bred heifers. The Wagners bought their own farm in Lebanon County in 1985.

With their children Stephanie and Christopher they built a herd of cows based on a breeding philosophy of high type and cows that will produce a lot of milk for many years.

They presently milk about 50 cows and sell raw milk and dairy products. They were active members of the Lebanon County Holstein Association,

Peifer

Melvin G. Peifer stared his dairy in 1955 on a rented farm just south of Lancaster.

The first registered herd was known as Mel-Ann Holsteins and they milked 30 Holsteins as well as raised tobacco and tomatoes.

In 1963, he moved to a farm they rented to Mowery Frey. There they milked 36 Holsteins and continued to farm tobacco and tomatoes. One of Mel’s passions was showing cattle. He became a very renowned showman and always stressed the importance of showing cattle and the art of it to his sons. In 1966, the Peifers purchased their first farm in Canton, in Bradford County.

In 1970, Mel and several other prominent dairymen from Bradford County and New York began the syndicate known as Bradford Banner Breeders.

Mel was also an active member of the Lancaster County and Bradford County Holstein Clubs.

Memorial award

The Pennsylvania Holstein Pioneer Memorial Award is given posthumously to an individual for their contribution to the Holstein Industry, this year’s award winner is Elwood Ohlinger.

Elwood attained a 10th-grade education at Conrad Weiser High School-He quit school to help run his brother’s dairy farm when his brother was injured in a tractor accident.

In October 1961, he married Ruth Field, and they began dairy farming at Reu-Hel Farms with her parents.

Elwood and his family farmed 515 acres of corn, alfalfa, wheat, barley and soybeans. In 2001, they built a Coverall free stall and special needs barn with a new double 10 parallel parlor to make it easier to milk their expanding herd.

Elwood served the Berks County Holstein Association on their Board of Directors for eight years.

Distinguished supporter

The Distinguished Supporter Award is to recognize an individual or company who through their efforts have supported and enhanced the work and goals of the Pennsylvania Holstein Association. This year’s recipient is Morrissey Insurance Inc., Ephrata, was founded by Bernard C. Morrissey in 1971.

Originally concentrating solely on farm and agri-business coverages, Morrissey earned a reputation as a farm and agribusiness insurance specialist and soon became one of the top Agway agents in Central Pennsylvania.

Today, Morrissey Insurance is a third generation company, started by Bernie, joined by son Craig and now grandsons Tim and Jason.

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