Sugar Creek Dairy
Sugar Creek Dairy of Elkhorn, WI, is home to more than just a large herd of cows. In fact, its owners Rick and Marleen have developed a strong herd of ladies that like to work and look great doing so. Rick and Marleen are no strangers to farming. Rick’s father moved to Wisconsin from Illinois in the 1950’s and raised his family just 20 minutes south of Sugar Creek. Rick’s family had a very diverse operation, consisting of 60 grade Holsteins, pigs and beef cattle. Rick’s interest was always in the dairy portion of the farm, and he returned home to milk cows after completing his education at UW-Madison Farm and Industry Short Course. Marleen grew up in Wiota, Wisconsin, attended MATC-Madison and she and Rick married after they finished school. The Adams’ remained at the home farm for 17 years before making the decision to relocate and build.
The Adams’ purchased 100 acres in 1997 with their previous business partner to start Sugar Creek Dairy. Prior to building facilities for 450 cows, the current site was only a cornfield. The cows from both herds were used to help fill the barns, along with the purchase of additional herds and groups of heifers. The Adams’ became sole owners of the Sugar Creek operation in 2007.
Since its start, Sugar Creek Dairy has seen a 100-cow increase, as well as the addition of another freestall barn. Cows are milked in a double-12 Germania herringbone parlor three times a day, and the 600 cows on test merit a 32,267 pound herd average, with a 4.2% and 1345 pound fat test and 3.2% and 1023 pound protein test.
Rick and Marleen have two children. Sara graduated from UW-Eau Claire with a degree in political science and works for in Madison. Ryan, married to Ashley, attended UW-Madison and has a doctorate in Physical Therapy. The labor force at the farm consists of Rick and Marleen, with Rick as the overall manager and Marleen taking on the calf raising and bookwork. They are accompanied by 12 additional workers, including one feeder, one herdsman and ten additional milkers.
Cows at Sugar Creek are divided into five groups based on age and production and are fed a TMR. The entire herd is bedded with sand, and buildings are complete with fans and sprinklers to beat the summer heat. Dry cows occupy the end of one of the milking barns and calve on a straw pack. Manure storage includes a clay-lined lagoon with a cement floor that is hauled twice a year.
Sugar Creek Dairy has been using top tested genomic sires in recent years with great success. Bulls that have had a large influence in the herd include Doorman, Buckeye, Pety, Mogul, Supersire, Munition, Montross, Mccutchen, Baxter, JayZ, Diamondback, Meridian, Monterey, Silver and Commander.
Rick and Marleen put their heart and soul into the success of their operation, and it shows on many different levels. Longevity of cows in the herd is outstanding, and the Adams’ are able to sell surplus animals for dairy at several area arenas. Since 2009, Rick and Marlene have been able to sell 10% of their cattle for dairy. While they do well selling cows for dairy, they continue to market their genetics through the use of Wisconsin publications, such as the WHA News. They have no desire to get larger; rather, they prefer to keep tweaking what they have. They would like to add more feed space in the barns and continue to improve cow comfort by adding rubber mats in the walkways. Rick says, “We strive to make and build a better cow in each generation. You have to be able to do things consistently.”
These two cows pictured have had a tremendous impact on the herd!
Sugar-C D Mary 2E-90 EEEVV
7-01 3x 365 37,050 3.3 1126 3.0 1102
Lifetime: 219,530M 7314F 6598P
Sired by Die Hard, her dam was a 3E-91 GMD Aaron with 250,140 8038F 7574P lifetime. Next dam VG-86 GMD with 144,960 4609F 4166P lifetime.
Mary has 4 daughters - an EX-91 Jose, EX-90 Manager, VG-88 Ramos and a VG-88 Garrison. Currently there are 35 members of the Mary family in the herd at Sugar Creek Dairy.
NAVS Mac Shawna-ET VG-87 VG-MS DOM
4-01 365 39,010 4.1 1592 3.0 1270
Lifetime: 124,060M 5015F 4049P
Sired by Mac, her dam was a VG-87 VG-MS DOM Shottle with 31,440 4.5 1424 3.3 1034. Next dam is Eroy - VG-87 GMD DOM with 40,330 4.4 1789 2.9 1162.
Shawna has 9 daughters - an EX-91 Shan, EX-90 Facebook, VG-88 & VG-87 Iotaa, VG-87 Doorman, VG-86 & VG-85 Bookems and two GP-83 daughters. There are currently 30 members of the Shawna family in the herd.
Growing Genetic Families
We believe in genomics, but they must have a strong maternal pedigree!
Sugar-C Zipit Jojane VG-85 VG-MS +2579G
1-11 365 34,920 3.9 1376 3.3 1156
Jojane is from 12 VG and EX dams and an outcross pedigree. She has 12 daughters in the herd, including:
• a Polled Solution at +2699G
• an Uncle Fester at +2681G
• 2 by Nebo that average +2594G
• a PP Limelight at +2600G
• 2 by Casper that average +2578G
• 3 by Simplicy that average +2524G
Her Simplicity son at International Protein Sires
56HO1320 Sugar-C Just In Time *RC *PP +2512G +1686M +29F +40P
Type +1.51 UDC +1.31 FLC +0.42
NM $410 CM $393 GM $363 DWP $408
DPR +0.4 PL +3.7 LIV +1.5 SCS 3.02
Sugar-C Mcc Faith-ET VG-88 VG-MS +2197G
3-01 39,690 3.0 1208 3.3 1309
Lifetime: 142,510 3.7 5285 3.3 4644
Sired by McCutchen, her dam VG-87 VG-MS, +2091G and 4-03 365 37,600 4.4 5014 3.4 3842. Next dam VG-85 VG-MS, sired by Jeeves, and +2003G with 5-04 354 46,050 3.1 1445 2.9 1330.
Faith has 5 daughters in the herd. They include:
• 2 by Solution that average +2417G
• +2069G Cinderdoor
• VG-86 Duke at +2546G
• EX-90 Denver, +2604G, with 3 daughters: GP-84 Granite at
+2724G, GP-81 Mr Big at +2567G, and a Hodedoe at +2738G
• The Granite has a Sandy-Valley Challenger at +2800G, under
contract to Semex & has pregnancies due in April by ESPN
Golden-Oaks O Arriel-Red-ET EX-91 EX-MS +2014G
3-02 339 31,820 3.8 1200 3.2 1008
Sired by Olympian, her dam 2E-92 EX-MS with 3-10 312 29,830 4.8 1444 3.4 1019. Next dam 4E-96 DOM Apple-Red. Arriel's maternal sister, Farnear TBR Aria Adler-ET 2E-96, was the Senior & Grand Champion of the 2020 Midwest and Southern National Shows.
Arriel has 4 daughters in the herd:
• EX-90 Hypnotic at +2017G
• VG-88 Loyola-P at +2289G
• VG-85 Crush at +2015G
• July 2020 Moovin *RC at +3.10 GTPI Type
Pregnancies & embryos by Fitters, Latenite, Choice, Rubel-Red, Warrior-Red, Joy Rider-Red & Analyst-Red. Pregnant to Revere-Red.
Check out her son, Sugar-C Aristo Andrew-Red +2.47T, at Topnotch Genetics!
Sugar Creek Dairy has developed many Gold Medal Dams - in 2018 they had 9 and were fourth in the U.S.,
in 2019 they had 7 and were third in the U.S.
Inquiries welcome on all of our cow families. Visitors always welcome!