More About the Author
Curt Arens was born in 1964. He grew up on a farm near Crofton, Nebraska. Arens attended St. Rose of Lima elementary school in Crofton, and graduated in 1982 from Crofton High School. He received his B.S. in Agriculture, with an Animal Science major, from the University of Nebraska.
Arens' writing career began early. In high school, he served as an editor for the parish newsletter at St. Rose of Lima. He was also co-editor on the annual and school newspaper staff at Crofton High School, and was active in 4-H and FFA public speaking. He began writing farm features for the Crofton Journal while in college. After graduating, he became a regular contributor for the Norfolk Daily News.
After college, Arens farmed with his family. As he began to take over the reigns of the family farm, Arens married his wife Donna, and moved onto his family's fourth generation farm where he had grown up. As hog markets slumped, the newlyweds lost a major portion of their farm income, so Arens began writing regular farm stories for the Cedar County News, and he started writing magazine articles to make ends meet. He sold his first farm article to Farm Journal in 1999. Since then, he has had regular credits in publications like Successful Farming, Nebraska Farmer, American Profile, Nebraska Life, New Holland News and Living Here.
His first book, "Down to Earth: Celebrating a Blessed Life on the Land," was released in 2008 by ACTA Publications and garnered a 2009 Catholic Press Association Award for a book from a first time author.
In 2005, Arens began writing a weekly column on family, farming and faith for the Cedar County News and their affiliate papers. His second book, "A Year With Farm to Family: A Journal of Rural Life," is a compilation of 52 - a year's worth - of Arens' favorite columns. It was released by the Cedar County News in 2009.
Arens co-wrote a booklet on direct farm marketing with Sandy Patton, called "Making the Connection: A Toolkit for Starting a Radio and Web-based Local Food Campaign." It was released by Northeast Nebraska RC&D in 2008. He also helped found a weekly local food and family farm radio program, "Farm to Family Connection" that airs on two Yankton, SD radio stations.
He has earned media awards from the Center for Rural Affairs and the Nebraska Forest Service, as well as an outstanding contributions to agriculture award from the Northeast Nebraska Experiment Farm Association and the University of Nebraska. He is currently assistant director for the Northeast Nebraska RC&D "Farmers Market Moms" program.
Arens and his wife have three children. On their farm, they raise corn, soybeans, oats, wheat and alfalfa and operate a small beef herd. His wife, Donna is a junior high English teacher at St. Rose School in Crofton. They are active in their church and parish school, and they enjoy being active in their local 4-H club, gardening, farming and parenting together on their family farm.