Chances are if you’ve spent any time at all in the Eastern Ontario agricultural world, you’ve heard of the Leroys and the Modes.
The two families operate prominent farms in the area and have long moved in the same circles. But on July 1, the two families got a whole lot closer with the wedding of two members of their upcoming generation: Tim Leroy and Kelsey Mode.
Love…Until the cows come home
Of course, where else could the couple hold their dream wedding but on the farm?
“We knew [the farm] was the only place we wanted to have the wedding. It meant that much more to have it in the place that meant the most to us,” Kelsey says.
Surrounded by hay bales, corn fields, and grazing livestock, Mode and Leroy couldn’t have imagined a more perfect setting for their big day.
Originally, the two had planned to split the wedding between both family farms. However, in typical 2017 summer-weather fashion, heavy rain forced them to move all of the activities solely to the Leroy homestead. Kelsey says it didn’t stop them from having the wedding they had both dreamed of.
“It was pretty much perfect. I mean, except the rain,” Kelsey says. “Everyone’s spirits were high and we were all there for the right reasons.”
It’s difficult for Mode to point to an exact moment when the couple first met. After all, not only did their families work in the same industry, they also grew up down the road from one another, took the same bus to school, and participated in similar sports and hobbies throughout their youths.
“I don’t remember meeting him because I’ve literally known him forever,” Kelsey explains.
Despite the many areas of overlap, the two were separated by a four-year age gap and so never quite had the chance to develop anything more than a friendship with each other.
But finally, one year, after countless fairs and cow showings spent tying their cattle beside each other, they decided to take a shot at more than just friendship. Four years later, happily married and sharing the life and work they both love, it seems like they made the right decision.
Future farms and family
Currently, the newlyweds work on their respective family farms (Tim at Yorellea and Kelsey at Bonnie Brae). Mode says the separation can be difficult but that they make as much time as possible to see each other when they get the chance to do so.
“We try to do as much as we can together. If we have free time, we’re usually helping out on the other’s farm.”
The two have plans to one day integrate both farms together in some capacity, but for now, they’re happy with the set up they have.
As for starting a family of their own, Mode says that’s definitely something they’re planning for the future, though they haven’t yet settled on a number.
“We’re not sure how many yet. It depends on the day, I guess.”
The Leroys have had Yorellea farm since 1847, while the Modes have been farming at Bonnie Brae since 1821. Both Tim and Kelsey are the seventh generation to farm at their respective locations.