The Voorhees family began farming in Illinois in the mid1800s. Now in its 6th generation the grain and livestock farm is operated by Martin and Ryan Voorhees. The farm consists of about 1000 acres of corn and soybeans, a cattle herd, and small scale hog operation. Over time the farming methods used by Northtown farms may have changed, but our principles have not. We want to be good stewards of the land and ensure that the farm is passed to the next generation better that it was inherited.
Meet your growers:
Martin Voorhees - As a teenager Martin was very active showing Dairy Cattle. He as a bachelors degree in agriculture from Illinois State University. Upon graduation he returned to the farm and began farming with his father (Glen). Today Martin is the chief farm operator. He oversees the day to day activities of the farm and the well being of the livestock. He and his wife Carol reside at the main farmstead located northeast of Washington. They have two children, Ryan and Drew.
Ryan Voorhees – Ryan’s involvement in the farm began at the age of 12 when he started selling sweet corn in order to afford a car and save for college. In 2000 he added pumkins to the mix. Ryan has a bachelors degree in Agriculture from the University of Illinois and a masters degree from Illinois State University. Ryan works off farm part of the week to build equity so he can begin purchasing the farm assets from his father. Ryan’s responsibilities include marketing, management, record keeping, and technology integration for the farm. Ryan, his wife Jennica, and daughter Bristol live a few miles away from the farm.
Jennica Voorhees – Jennica stepped into the operation on the day she said “I do”. Jennica grew up near Mackinaw. She has been a great addition to the operation as she brings a new perspective. Jennica is a part time nurse at the Children’s Hospital in Peoria and a full time mother to daughter Bristol. Jennica manages Northtown Fresh Market. She is prides herself in providing fresh produce to our customers. From early September through the end of October Jennica can be found at the market helping customers select the perfect pumpkin.
Jason Smith – Jason is a long time family friend and relative that also grew up in Washington. Jason is responsible for growing and picking the majority of the produce that we sell on the farm. Jason works with Jennica to ensure that the food you buy from us is the freshest around and free from any dangerous chemicals.
The Voorhees family began farming in Tazewell county in 1869 when John S. Voorhees established his farmstead west of Deer Creek. Northtown Farms is now operated by Martin Voorhees (5th Generation) and Ryan Voorhees (6th Generation). There are few families that have consecutive generations farming in the same area. We believe that the main reason we have been able to farm in the same community for so long is that all generations (past and present) have focused on a few simple values: honesty, integrity, environmental stewardship, and family.