Extension Logo
Extension Logo
University of Minnesota Extension

Mille Lacs County Farm Family

Big Rock Farms

The farmhouse and the original log barn on the farm were built by Kurt Beckstrom's grandfather, Andrew, sometime in the late 1800s to early 1900s. It was purchased in 1936 by Kurt’s father, Morris, from his older sister, Josephine. Morris and his family were primarily dairy farmers.

Kurt took over the operation in 1976 and continued milking cows until 1997. Around 1990, Kurt started a feedlot operation. He sold the original homestead in 2000 and built a new house on the remaining 120 acres.

In 2014, Josh Holm and his wife, Amanda, purchased the house and 40 acres from Kurt and Josh’s mother, Traci. When Josh and Amanda purchased the house, they started their farm with three beef cows and grew that number to 85 head in 2021. They have downsized to around 30 head currently.

Big Rock Farms is primarily a beef and hay operation. The Holms farm about 250 acres; 200 of that is hay ground. They plant 40 to 50 acres of corn a year to feed young stock. They finish an average of 15 to 30 head of market beef each year which they sell directly to local customers. The Holms have a mix of cattle including Angus, Sim/Angus and recently they’ve been introducing Braunvieh cattle into the operation.

Josh has been the dreamer of the family, set on expansion. Kurt has been the driving force of the operation over the past 10 years. Sadly, Kurt passed away in late June of this year.

Josh and Amanda have four children, Ila, Waylon, Calla and Coe. The family is involved in the daily feeding of the livestock along with Traci. The family has had a lot of support from neighbors, family, and friends throughout the years. Local farmer Greg Skibout has helped the Holms as has Josh’s aunt, Tammie.

The Holms have been getting more involved in the 4-H program as the children have begun to show livestock at the Mille Lacs County Fair.

Kurt was a 4-H member and heavily involved in the 4-H program for 35+ years and was a member of the Mille Lacs Soil and Water Conservation District for more than 35 years. He spent 12 years as chairman of Area 3. He spent over six years on the National Association of Conservation Districts as a representative for Minnesota. He also served on the state Board of Water and Soil Resources board. Kurt was on the local township board for 30 years and spent time on the local creamery board and the local fertilizer board, along with many other community and state programs.

Page survey

© 2024 Regents of the University of Minnesota. All rights reserved. The University of Minnesota is an equal opportunity educator and employer.