Culver’s Continues to Grow Partnerships: Supporting Ag at Sauk Valley Community College
It’s no secret that Culver’s is a great supporter of agriculture, both regionally and nationally. You only need look at the numerous strong philanthropic partnerships between Culver’s restaurants and organizations in our own backyard. One such partnership exists between Culver’s of Dixon and the Ag programs at Sauk Valley Community College.
For several years, SVCC and the Dixon Culver’s have successfully partnered through the Thank You Farmers Project fundraisers and events. With a variety of opportunities available throughout the year, customers can be part of giving to and supporting the agriculture education programs at SVCC. New Ag program director, Professor Kevin Larsen, shared that “The Culver's restaurants have been tremendous supporters of agricultural education programs across the country. Our relationship with the restaurant in Dixon has been exceptionally special as they have been one of the largest supporters of the Sauk Valley Community College Agriculture program over the past three years. I am also very excited to have the ownership of the Dixon Culver's come into the SVCC Ag Business classes to talk about what it's really like to own a restaurant business.”
Most recently, Larsen and Dixon Culver’s co-owner, Kayla Halfacre, celebrated another successful fundraising campaign that supports the purchase of a restored 1957 International Harvester 350 Utility tractor (with a Woods finishing mower). The tractor and attached mower will be maintained by the Ag Mechanics classes, and displayed at area county fairs and tractor shows to promote Ag at SVCC.
The restored Harvester will also be used to maintain areas of the 56 acres shared by Sauk and Dixon High School at 1501 Brinton Avenue. Last year, DHS and SVCC agreed to a 5-year contract allowing Sauk to plant crops based on plans developed by the college's agriculture program students, and it will also be a learning ground for high school students.
About her commitment to support agriculture and farming at SVCC, Halfacre shared, “We are thrilled to partner with SVCC Ag Program again. Farming is so important to the restaurant industry and we are thrilled that our very own community college has a great Ag Program. We will continue to support them in any way we can.”
Currently, Sauk’s Ag program provides students with opportunities to gain skills and expertise in areas including Ag Production Technology, Crop and Soil Science, Drone Operation, and Agribusiness. With increasing shortages of farmers regionally and nationally, partnerships like those between Sauk Ag and the Dixon Culver’s will only continue to grow in importance. Of her personal connection to farming, Halfacre notes, “Without farming, I couldn’t wake up and do what I love each and every day.”