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Ceremony officially opens Heritage Acres dairy barn

Heritage Acres held the grand opening of the Zoeteman-Vogelaar barn on Saturday.

Heritage Acres held the grand opening of the Zoeteman-Vogelaar barn on Saturday.

MD of Pincher Creek Reeve Brian Hammond and Foothills MP John Barlow cut the ribbon to officially open the barn.

MD of Pincher Creek Reeve Brian Hammond and Foothills MP John Barlow cut the ribbon to officially open the barn.

A dairy barn that for decades provided milk for Pincher Creek and district will now serve as a key symbol of agricultural history in Alberta.
The grand opening was held Saturday of the Zoeteman-Vogelaar dairy barn at Heritage Acres.
“We thought it would be a really good display building to tell the story of the development of the dairy industry, and the cattle industry, in southern Alberta,” said Robert Mitchell, who was part of the group that got the barn moved to Heritage Acres from Pincher Creek.
More than 200 people packed the upstairs of the so-called “red barn” on Saturday morning for the grand opening.
Foothills MP John Barlow and other dignitaries were on hand for the opening of the barn, and the 30th anniversary of the Heritage Acres farm museum.
Mitchell told the audience Boss Zoeteman built the barn with its gothic arched roof in 1938 and four years later added another section.
Zoeteman operated a dairy until 1959 when he sold to the Vogelaar family, who continued the dairy until 1972.
Mitchell said at the peak of the dairy’s operation, 80 cows were milked in the barn to supply most of the milk in Pincher Creek and district.
When Lloyd Sproule bought the property he donated the barn to Heritage Acres providing it could get it moved in a year.
Mitchell recounted how a committee was struck and raised $208,000 to pour a concrete foundation move the barn and put a new roof cover in place.
“The decision to get the barn here was a really important one,” Pincher Creek Mayor Don Anderberg said.
MD of Pincher Creek Reeve Brian Hammond said the barn is an important addition to the Heritage Acres collection.
“I don’t need to tell you how important the red barn is as a symbol,” Hammond said. “It was the center of the farmstead.”
For the 10-kilometre move to Heritage Acres, the barn was split into two sections of about 36 ft. by 105 ft. and loaded onto separate trucks to be moved at the same time.
The barns were moved slowly from the edge of Pincher Creek to Heritage Acres by Holmes Building Movers.
Hammond admitted that when the idea of moving the barn to Heritage Acres was proposed he was
skeptical.
“I just shook my head and said it’s impossible,” Hammond said. “The impossible has turned into reality.”

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