The farm has been in the Sterzick family for over 100 years. His family purchased the farm back 1909. The Angus flag is flown on the weekends right below the American flag. Kirk and Adrian have dedicated a lot of themselves into keeping their centennial farm going. Sterzick has about 30 acres he pastures his cattle on, and an additional 45 that he puts up in hay. At present he has about 20 cows which he checks daily with the help of his dog, Missy. Sterzick shared, “The farm life is simple and rewarding. A lot of that is how I was raised.”
Kirk credits his father, Adrian, for a lot of the success that Sterzick Angus has seen. Adrian took an early discharge from the military and headed back to the family farm to help. They farmed 80 plus acres on shares. Kirks parent’s, Adrian and Joyce, married in 1958 after Adrian had returned from the service. The farm began with the dairy cattle operation in 1909 and Kirks parent's continued milking cows until late 1960’s. At which point they purchased 4 Angus heifers to start their beef herd. Adrian has always been Kirk’s right hand man helping in various roles from checking and filling water tanks, driving tractor or the manure spreader and other tasks. More recently as Adrian has aged, Kirk has made it a point to bring his father to the farm to supervise while he cuts and bales hay. “It helps having him here. I’ve learned a lot from my dad,” said Sterzick.
Adrian passed away in October 2011, but always enjoyed their Angus cattle and was proud of how Kirk has carried on the family farm.
“My passion comes from both my mom and dad,” Sterzick said. Because Kirk’s dad worked full time, his mom, Joyce, would check cows morning and night. She was very knowledgeable and dedicated to the cattle. This passion and enthusiasm carried over to Kirk. As a young boy, Kirk didn’t enjoy the cattle, but over the years that changed. He is the only son to continue with his mom and dad’s love of raising and producing livestock. Kirk shared a story about a deal he made with his parents. If he passed algebra, he could have a heifer calf. Kirk passed and got the heifer.
Kirk fell in love with the cows as much as he did the people. “Every farm I went to, the people were so proud of their cattle,” he said. Kirk mentioned that Darwin Canfield was a big influence on his involvement in the Angus industry. “He was a good friend.” They would take pasture walks and enjoy a cup of coffee while talking cattle. Kirk and his family have had many different breeds on their farm; everything from dairy cattle, Simmentals, Belted Galloways, and Herefords. Kirk found a family and great friends in the Angus breed. “I have always enjoyed and loved the Angus cattle,” he said.
In a few short years, Kirk has become active in the Michigan Angus association. He is on the state board as a director of the Association and is the President of the West Michigan Angus Association. He feels that with the younger generation coming up, “we have to improve it and we can have a heck of an organization.” “This organization is something to treasure,” he said. “I wouldn’t get to know people if I wasn’t involved.”
One of Kirk’s favorite Angus events is the annual banquet. Sterzick said, “I like seeing the awards for the kids and the auctions.” He enjoys watching the kids and Angus members celebrate their achievements and their connection with the cattle. In addition to the shows and annual sales, Kirk always looks forward to the Angus Field Days. “We come together as a big family to have fun,” he said. Sterzick Farms was excited and please to host the 2012 Michigan Angus Field Days.