Wautoma’s Kirk Company employees preparing to celebrate 100 years
In 2018, the Wautoma-based Kirk Company will be celebrating their 100th anniversary in the Christmas tree business. The company, which started in 1918 after G.R. Kirk sold a railroad car of Christmas trees to a florist in El Paso, Texas, at one time had 10,000 acres of Waushara County Christmas trees planted after purchasing farms around Wautoma. Even though 2006 was the last year Christmas trees were harvested in Waushara County, the Kirk Company now ships trees worldwide form their facilities in Oregon, North Carolina and Nova Scotia, while the support products, such as balers, netting and Christmas tree colorants used by farmers, are produced at the Wautoma facility. Kolors by Kirk is the newest product available through the Kirk Company and are offered in 12 colors, which can be viewed on in front of the production facility on State Road 22, north of Wautoma. Pictured are: (back row): Richard Hotchkiss, Ron Haas, Scott Boness, owner, Gary Snyder, Holden Smith, Betty Eilers, Michelle Marks and Nancy Brown; (middle row): TJay Roland, Amanda Klingenberger, Aidee Gonzalez, Laura Steuck, Junior Dela Fuente, Diane Gable and Janice Bleier; (front row): Don Steuk, Mark Irish, Robbie Busko, Jacob Browlow, Eddie Dela Fuente and Craig Irish.