Craig Boot is no stranger to the hard work required of farming. Having been involved with the farm since he was young, he knows the work is never done, and it is in his blood to always keep busy.
After graduating high school, Craig farmed part-time, and in 1984 he went to work for Precision Pulley and Idler while continuing to help on the farm. In 1991, he was able to purchase the family farm and continued to work at Precision Pulley until 2004 when he began farming full-time. Craig’s farm operation has continued to grow, and he is currently farming about 1,400 acres. Along with his farm operation, he keeps busy custom applying approximately 4,000 acres of anhydrous ammonia each year for Two Rivers Cooperative, custom harvesting over 600 acres of soybeans for a handful of neighbors, and working on his antique tractors.
Restoring tractors was a favorite past time of his father’s and is something Craig still enjoys doing himself. He and his father restored a 1957 Farmall 450 tractor that is identical to the one his father farmed with. Along with working part-time, Craig’s father, Carroll, was commonly found participating in local tractor rides for over 20 years. Carroll’s grandchildren were invited on the rides with him, making these tractor rides a family tradition. While Craig never loved the tractor rides like his dad, his enjoyment came from helping him get ready for them. “Just to get Dad there and watch him was worth it,” Craig states.
Antique tractors and farming are not all that keep Craig busy. Family plays a huge role in his day-to-day activities. Two Rivers Tracy location agronomist, Brent Van Kooten, happens to be Craig’s nephew and friend. Aside from being Craig’s agronomist, the two spend quite a bit of time together. Brent was also able to be involved in the tractor rides with Craig’s dad, Brent’s grandfather, for five years. Brent enjoys assisting anytime he can on the farm but also appreciates going hunting and spending time with his uncle.
Craig also appreciates spending time with his wife, Kris, who works at Pella Regional Healthcare. The two love spending time with their children and grandchildren. With all of their children residing close to home, they are able to have the whole family over relatively often. His daughter, Jessica, and her family live near Sully, and she works at Grinnell Mutual Reinsurance in Grinnell. Jessica and her husband, Josh, stay busy with their three children who always love coming to visit grandpa (Craig). His son, Jake, currently lives on the family farm and works at Numark Buildings. Jake loves to help farm any chance he can. Craig’s step-daughter, Sydney, is currently attending Kirkwood to become a dental hygienist.
It seems some things will never change for Craig Boot: farming and spending time with his family. Whether it is farming, hunting or staying home, Craig looks forward to quality time with those he loves.