Dale was raised on the farm started by his parents, Gerald and Isabel in the 1930’s. Dale and Deedra bought the farm in 1985 after they were married. Originally 360 acres, since 1985 the farm has grown to about 1,300 acres including Deedra’s parents, Erling and Iva Olson’s farm.
They raise registered and commercial polled Herefords and grow oats and hay for feed. Deedra worked at the Indus School until her second child was born in 1988, then she decided to stay home and grow the farm and cattle business. They started with 15 Herefords and have grown to an average of 150 head of cattle. They regularly attend bull sales and have been buying bulls from Topp Herefords in Grace City ND for the past 15 years. They do some artificial insemination and embryo transfers to improve the quality of the herd. Deedra also had a love for Arabian horses and raised them for many years.
Dale and Deedra were both raised on dairy farms and Deedra used to show her Hereford cattle in 4H. She has been raising laying hens for years and enjoys being able to provide eggs to the community and her children and grandchildren. Deedra has been active in the community of Birchdale for many years, she was a Sunday School teacher, 4H leader, on the River Valley Development Association, Indus School scholarship committee, and volunteers in various other happenings in the area. Erickson Herefords is also a member of the American Hereford Association.
Dale has worked on and off the farm for years. Land Management & Sustainability have always been a top priority for Dale. He owns Erickson Timber Products of Baudette, Minnesota. In 2015, Erickson Timber was selected as Lake States Logger of the year. He is also an active member of the community, he served on the ISD 363 school board for many years, served eight years on the Minnesota Forest Resource Council, is a past president of the Minnesota Timber Producers Association. He serves on various other boards and committees.
Dale and Deedra have four children, Cameron, Karla, Calli, and Grant, all of whom grew up on the farm and helped with the daily chores and haying in the summer. All four children participated in 4H and showed the Hereford cattle, along with Arabian horses, pigs, chickens, ducks, geese, and fresh vegetables from the farm. Cameron and Grant still live close by and help with the haying and combining oats in the summer. Cameron and Grant both also work full time for Erickson Timber. They have seven grandchildren that love to be on the farm and help with chores.
They have a sizable garden that provides the whole family with canned veggies throughout the winter months. They also grow pumpkins and give them away to many families. They are always present as volunteers for the many events that Birchdale hosts.