When you go to the annual Kenosha County Dairy Breakfast, there are certain things you expect to see. Farm equipment. Barns. Volunteers toiling away at giant frying pans of cheesy scrambled eggs and ham. And of course cows.
But at this year’s dairy breakfast on June 14 from 6:30 to 10:30 a.m. at Weis-Way Farm in Paris, you will have a chance to get the real inside story on cows. Weis-Way has arranged to have a vet demonstrating cow ultrasounds at this year’s dairy breakfast.
“We were trying to come up with something different,” said Dan Weis, whose family farm also hosted the event in 2011. “I don’t think many people have seen a cow ultrasound.”
The breakfast will include scrambled eggs with ham and cheese, pancakes, fresh bread and butter, yogurt, muffin, milk, juice, and ice cream. Breakfast tickets are $6 and children 6 and under eat free. Parking will be at the Weis-Way Farm, 21000 Highway 142, Paris. In case of rain, parking will be at Brighton Grade School (1200 248th Ave.), Paris Grade School (1901 176th Ave.) and the Kenosha County Center (Hwy 50 & 45) with a shuttle provided. Besides the hearty breakfast, the event will offer a Wisconsin products tent, old-fashioned children’s games and much more.
Dan and Marie Weis purchased the farm from Dan’s parents — Barney and Ema Weis — in 1994. In 2008, they built their compost bedding pack barn that serves as the housing system for their Holstein cows. The farm also has 73 acres for crop production. The Weis’ son Brett is the fourth generation to work the farm.
Compost bedding pack barns are still somewhat unique to the area and the Weis’s traveled to Minnesota to see one in action before deciding to build theirs. Instead of a traditional cement floor the cows in a compost bedding pack barn are able to stand and lay down in a resting area with a thick layer of the soft pack. The pack is aerated by tilling, which keeps the surface fresh and encourages the microbial composting activity. The system helps manage manure and is more comfortable for the cows.
They must be doing something right. The 30 cow strong Weis-Way herd has been named among the top 200 in the nation by Holstein World Magazine’s Top 200 dairy heard in the U.S.
“We’re trying to emphasize the quality part, not the quantity part,” Weis said.