C. E. “Happy” Norris, President of Lake County Farm Bureau, has deep ties to agriculture. He’s a Bermuda Hay farmer and a fifth generation Lake Countian. Happy and his family ran a local farm equipment dealership for many years and even raised citrus and cattle. His grandfather, Bob Norris, was a long-time Lake County Extension agent.
He believes in agricultural education and promoting the future of agriculture. Happy is an enthusiastic supporter of 4-H and FFA students and doesn’t miss an opportunity to sponsor a project ranging from arts and crafts to livestock and horticulture. He is involved in promoting fair and livestock shows throughout the county and state. He even took the Lake County Farm Bureau Annual Meeting to the next level by making it a fun and engaging membership drive that involves hands-on activities for the young and old.
The annual meeting is held each October at the Expo Center and Lake County Fairgrounds and is attended by more than 250 guests. Board members cook the dinner and local 4-H and FFA students participate in various booth contests, including a popular pumpkin carving event.
Residents look forward to the annual meeting each fall. It is an opportunity for both active and associate Farm Bureau members to mingle, set-up a booth, or visit with Member Benefit vendors and local Extension agents.
When asked what his favorite recipe is, Happy says it’s hard to beat a good farm raised rib eye steak. “I cook mine in a cast iron skillet. Wet the skillet with a little oil on medium high heat, season with garlic salt and pepper and right before the oil starts to smoke throw the steak in.”
Lake County Facts
Number of Farms: 1,814
Land in Farms: 121,422 acres
Jobs Provided: 28,669
Economic Impact: $1.28 billion
Lake County Farm Bureau Members: 3,571