Countryside Media is home to four thriving homesteading communities, each with their own magazine and membership, including Backyard Poultry, Backyard Goats / Goat Journal, Backyard Beekeeping, and Countryside & Small Stock Journal. Established in 1917, our purpose is to inspire self-reliant living on any level. We acknowledge that the path to self-sufficiency is as unique as the person who accepts the journey. We strive to strengthen the homesteading movement by sharing the diverse voices and knowledge of today’s practitioners. We teach our readers how to grow and raise their own food; build, fix, and craft with their own two hands.
Our team is small, but mighty. We aren’t sitting in a high-rise in the city pretending we understand homesteading. We live this life. We nurture and grow Countryside from our small-town offices and even right from our own homesteads. We know the joys of homesteading; we know the sorrows, too. We are your people, and you are ours. Homestead on, Countrysiders!
Ana Skemp is a mother, a farmer, and a maker at Deep Roots Community Farm in Wisconsin. She raises grass-fed beef, KuneKune pigs, Icelandic Cross sheep, Pygora fiber goats, ducks, geese, and chickens. In the summer, the farm is opened up to local school kids for educational programming. Her family recently became the next generation to tend the family apple orchard.
Melonie was born and raised in the small rural town of Lake City, South Carolina. She grew up helping her family garden, shell peas, and shuck corn. In her free time, Melonie enjoys playing the flute, hiking, and making goodies!
Lacy was born and raised near Houston, TX. She has a small homestead with her husband that centers around their animals. She raises chickens for both eggs and meat, turkeys, and Nigerian dwarf goats. The menagerie also includes, dogs, cats, a tortoise, turtles and a pig. She also enjoys growing vegetables and fruit trees and loves cooking what’s grown on the homestead as well as wild game.
Marissa Ames runs a small homestead in Fallon, Nevada, where she breeds rare San Clemente Island goats. She teaches homesteading classes for the National Grange organization. Marissa and her husband, Russ, serve as agricultural advisors in Africa for the nonprofit I Am Zambia, facilitating sustainability for rural villages and schools. She spends her free time eating lunch.
Ann Tom lives in northcentral Wisconsin and enjoys her vegetable garden and flowerbeds. When the weeding is done, she enjoys fishing, camping, cooking, and spending time with family and friends.
Kelly Weiler has worked with Countryside since 2007. She is the lucky beneficiary of her parents’ huge garden and does a lot of canning and freezing to feed her twin teenagers. She grew up on a small dairy farm and brings a true farm heart with her.
Steph Merkle lives on four acres in southeastern Wisconsin, where she tends to her vegetable and pollinator gardens, raises a mixed flock of egg layers (Salmon Favorelles are her favorite), and keeps honey bees. She loves to travel, spend time with her two little ones, and believes as many as six impossible things before breakfast.
Chad Kuskie is a devoted father and husband, a darn good golfer, an active volunteer, and a diehard Broncos and Rockies fan. He does everything in his power to introduce spreadsheets into every possible situation. Chad is also the Business Operations Manager for ACRES USA, the oldest publisher on production-scale organic and sustainable farming.
Alicia Soper has helped connect advertisers with readers for the past 15 years. When she’s not in the office, you can find her at the lake or spending time with family and friends.
Born and raised in Medford, Wisconsin, Samantha enjoys being outdoors with her family. They tend a garden, raise chickens, and like to go camping when not busy with sports.
Small Stock Magazine was founded in 1917 by Wallace Blair (actually, we can claim an even earlier beginning, because Countryside also contains Journal of Outdoor Enterprises which was begun in Kansas City in 1916.), Countryside was founded in 1969 by Jerry (Jd) Belanger, author of Raising Milk Goats the Modern Way, Homesteader’s Handbook to Raising Small Livestock, Raising the Homestead Hog, Country Living, Soil Fertility, and The Place Called Attar. The two merged in 1973 to become Countryside & Small Stock Journal, usually shortened to Countryside. Countryside is now a print and digital media company owned by Swift Communications.
Founded in 1916.
Founded in 2006.
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Fence Post Co.
attn: Countryside Publications
PO Box 566
Medford, WI 54451