Mid America Christmas Tree Association, (MACT)
2019 Summer Meeting
The 2019 MACT Summer Meeting
was held August 15 & 16, 2019
at Country Side Trees in Walworth, Wisconsin
Country Side Trees in Walworth, Wisconsin hosted the farm tour on Thursday, August 15th during the summer convention. Glen and Becky Feltham along with their daughters, Holly and Ruth have a 75 acre cut your own tree farm with Fraser fir, Canaan fir, Blue spruce, White pine and Scotch pine. They grow all their own bough material for wreaths, garland and grave blankets that they make themselves, and there are 10 elk on one of their properties.
Glen planted his first seedlings in 1982. He worked as an airline mechanic for many years as he continued to plant and care for his trees.
The first 20 years Glen and Becky kept growing trees, selling them first out of their garage and later built a gift shop down the road. They went from initially planting 500 trees per year of White pine and Scotch pine to 5,000 trees per year, then 10,000 trees per year of more varieties.
Through the recession Glen and Becky started a second business, CST Antlers, selling elk antler dog bones. The business came naturally because they had been raising elk since 2001 and trees were not selling like they used to. They planted fewer trees, using an 8 foot grid to make the cut your own experience more consumer friendly and tried different marketing ideas.
In the last 10 years they moved the retail location about a mile down the road. In 2012 they built a pavilion at that location to keep their employees out of the weather and to house their shaking and baling equipment. In 2016, they built a new gift shop next to it.
Today, Glen and Becky run the farm with the help of their daughters Holly and Ruth. The girls plan to take over the farm one day. They are moving forward as a family, planting more trees instead of slowing down. They sell their elk antler dog bones at their gift shop on the farm and advertise their Christmas tree farm at their pet events. The store is open a few days a week from spring until Christmas season. People can go for a walk through the fields and hopefully see a tree to come back for a Christmas.
We hope you will plan to attend to learn more about their marketing strategies, growing techniques, wreath business, growing brush/boughs for wreaths, raising elk, selling antlers, land use and rotation, and value added sales.
"Technology Tutoring with Holly" is being offered at the farm on Thursday.
Holly will be your "millennial" to help you with:
Setting up a Facebook or Instagram Business Page
Posting on Facebook or Instagram
Creating an ad on Facebook or Instagram
Scheduling so you don't have to post in real time
What to post online
Signing up with square
Please bring along your laptop/smart phone/tablet and your specific questions you want answered. We will schedule 10 minute time slots and you can sign up when you register for the convention.
We will be at the Walworth County Fairgrounds https://www.walworthcountyfair.com/
on Friday, for seminars, trade show, WI tree contest, and evening banquet. (There is also a rodeo on the grounds that evening.)
The Feltham family invites you to their farm.
Cody Jacobs and Ruth Feltham, Glen and Becky Feltham, Holly and Alex VanDresser stand under the "photo op" arch on their farm.
Come see the elk that live on Feltham's Christmas Tree farm.
A view inside the gift shop where they sell antler bones, honey, and hand made items.
The large shed protects workers from the elements as they bale and sell trees, and the customers can browse through the selection of wreaths and garland.