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Blue Tin Cattle ranch grows agritourism organization on an old household farm – Agweek


May 13, 2022
20200310 104336

How can a farm household pay for to remain on the farm without a next generation thinking about farming? Or, in a various scenario, how can a farm boost earnings with another organization or income stream on an existing farm or cattle ranch? With a strong organization strategy, effort and interest, agritourism can be a choice to remain on a farm and develop additional earnings, all while offering others a connection to farming.

A 1909 barn was cleaned up and the haymow got rid of to end up being an occasions area on the Jorgensen farm to support their agritourism organization, Blue Tin Cattle Ranch.

Contributed/ Blue Tin Cattle Ranch

Noreen Jorgensen and her child Kelley own and run Blue Tin Cattle ranch on their household farm in Burbank, South Dakota, along the Missouri River in between Elk Point and Vermillion. The additional earnings from Blue Tin Cattle ranch “is crucial to assist spend for the household health insurance, real estate tax and energies,” Noreen stated. I fulfilled Noreen while providing to the

South Dakota State University AgritourismSD class


they checked out Fargo, North Dakota



A brand-new usage for the old corn baby crib on the Jorgensen farm now houses 6 swings and a fire pit for visitors checking out Blue Tin Cattle ranch near Burbank, South Dakota.

Contributed/ Blue Tin Cattle Ranch

The Jorgensen household farming roots return to prior to South Dakota was even a state. The household’s forefathers emigrated from Denmark in the 1880s and started farming in the Yankton location in the 1910s. They lost much of what they had actually integrated in the Anxiety, Noreen stated.

” However they stood firm and developed back, till in 1950, the Army Corp of Engineers chose to develop Gavin Point Dam right on Jorgensen land,” she stated. “The federal government purchased out the farm, and the earnings were utilized to buy 640 acres of land in Union County, South Dakota.”


A refurbished chicken cage now acts as a “glamping” area for tourists to remain in at Blue Tin Cattle ranch, providing brand-new function and life on an old household farm.

Contributed/ Blue Tin Cattle Ranch

The farmland is now rented however the farm just recently experienced “brand-new life” over the previous 2 years, with a concept that progressed and grew over several years, Noreen showed me. The Jorgensens had actually developed a basketball court and an indoor pool location so their then-middle- and high school-aged kids belonged to socialize with good friends. Pals had actually recommended they lease it out for celebrations and occasions, however Noreen felt she was too hectic then raising kids to handle a task.


Visualized are mom and child duo Noreen and Kelley Jorgensen, who took a long time concept for the household farm and turned it into an agritourism organization, beginning in 2019.

Contributed/ Blue Tin Cattle Ranch

Child Kelley, an SDSU graduate with a degree in worldwide affairs, brought the concept back up in 2019 to Noreen, and the mother-daughter duo progressed. With a loan from a local bank, Blue Tin Cattle ranch started, initially by transforming the existing centers on the farm.

” Blue Tin Cattle ranch was the apparent option for the name given that every structure has a blue tin roofing,” Noreen discussed.

They transformed the indoor pool to a two-bedroom visitor house/hunting lodge, turned the basketball court into a structure by including a roofing. They cleaned up the 1909 barn and got rid of a part of the haymow, “to have the stunning millenium architecture on complete screen,” Noreen stated. The device shed can hold big events, and a loft above it acts as a lounge for hunters to hang out.

Noreen shared 5 obstacles Blue Tin Cattle ranch has actually needed to conquer:

  1. ” Welcoming the general public onto your land is intrinsic with all sort of dangers. Farm kids understand how to climb up over a barbed wire fence however kids from the city are surprised when the fence battles back!”
  2. ” Kids who matured on a farm or cattle ranch understand the risks of tractors and huge devices, animals and wildlife. Keeping the visitor safe from damage is a substantial part of the daily operation.”
  3. ” Discovering an insurance provider who can compose a policy custom-made to an agritourism organization is challenging.”
  4. ” Entering to speak to the lender who has actually just composed farming loans and inquiring to assist money a flower farm or a pumpkin spot is likewise a difficulty.”
  5. ” A huge obstacle for Blue Tin Cattle ranch has actually been the county federal government and zoning problems. They have trouble making the connection of ag land and agritourism.”

However she stated the negatives do not compare to “the favorable responses on the faces of kids as they stack out of the cars and truck and run for the very first time on an open field, family pet a calf and ride a horse.”
AgritourismSD organizer Stacy Hadrick stated the class was begun to assist individuals utilize farming resources in various methods.

” Noreen is an ideal example of taking the centers they had on the farm and utilizing it to run a brand-new organization that has the next generation interested,” Hadrick stated.


What when was a device shed now acts as a reception hall at Blue Tin Cattle ranch which hosts visitors year-round, from overnights to occasions, connecting into farming experiences and agritourism.

Contributed/ Blue Tin Cattle Ranch

Through the AgritourismSD class, Noreen discovered more youthful tourists are more thinking about hanging out and cash on experiences.

” On the farm they can collect chicken eggs, see how cows are milked today, learn more about the various crops planted or simply take pleasure in the wide-open areas,” she stated.

Agritourism can consist of farm stays, you-pick flowers and veggies, celebrations and occasions. Noreen stated Blue Tin Cattle ranch is thought about a farm stay, with its visitor home and a remodelled chicken cage as a “glamping area.” A grain bin quickly will be finished as another visitor area.

However Blue Tin Cattle ranch likewise hosts occasions. Kelley has actually arranged a summer season series called “Sundowns, Stargazing, S’mores and More!” She will have a watercolor painting class, a trip of the farm explaining the numerous crops, flowers and weeds, and a night of stargazing. Noreen will lecture on the agritourism class she is taking.

By fall, the farm changes from Blue Tin Cattle Ranch to “BOO” Tin Cattle ranch with a pumpkin spot, hayrides and a barrel train. Throughout the year they host graduation celebrations, reunions, wedding events and stop-over visitors on their method to Mount Rushmore or Yellowstone National Forest.


Inside a remodelled chicken cage, comfortable visitor area was developed for those remaining at Blue Tin Cattle Ranch.

Contributed/ Blue Tin Cattle Ranch

Blue Tin Cattle ranch sees visitors from Iowa or Nebraska– both simply 15 miles away– in addition to Minnesota, Illinois, Kansas or Missouri. Visitors utilize an online reservation platform. A number of their 2021 searching visitors currently have actually scheduled 2022 stays.

Noreen and Kelley both operate in their regional school district in the winter season. Blue Tin Cattle ranch is now their full-time function from spring through fall, offering brand-new function on a historical household farm and rejuvenating old farm structures while balancing out expenditures with earnings created.

Pinke is the publisher and basic supervisor of Agweek. She can be reached at kpinke@agweek.com, or get in touch with her on Twitter @katpinke.

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