Minnesota Prairie Roots

Writing and photography by Audrey Kletscher Helbling

A Minnesota roadside sweet corn stand August 13, 2019


Along Minnesota State Highway 3 just south of Dundas.


ACROSS SOUTHERN MINNESOTA, signs pop promoting sweet corn. Fresh. From the field. Tasting of summer.



Some farmers sell at local farmers’ markets or to grocery stores. Others vend from pick-up trucks, beds heaped with piles of sweet corn.


Randy selects corn from the Highway 3 stand.


Others park a wagon roadside,



secure a payment box thereon and trust customers to pay on the honor system.



Shove bills into box, bag your corn and go.



I love those stands—the unmanned ones that show people still believe in the goodness of other people. Trust. Honesty. Goodness. Virtues seemingly lost on too many these days. But still present in rural Minnesota.



And I love stories, like the one posted at a sweet corn stand along Minnesota State Highway 3 between Dundas and Faribault.


These entrepreneurs are growing pumpkins and squash, too, in the field next to the sweet corn stand.

Stories that make customers want to buy, and then return.

© Copyright 2019 Audrey Kletscher Helbling


14 Responses to “A Minnesota roadside sweet corn stand”

  1. Beth Ann Says:

    The one thing I really miss about living in Iowa is the sweet corn. It was always my favorite thing at the farmers markets and roadside stands. That “story” made me smile.

  2. Dottie Says:

    Nothing beat sweet corn straight from the farm!

  3. Jackie Hemmer Says:

    I have yet to grab some sweet corn. I need to do that soon!

  4. Marilyn Donnell Says:

    Oh, I am soooo much hankering for an ear or two. That would make my whole dinner.

  5. This makes me think of growing up on farms as a kid. Helping each other out on the farms and sometimes getting a little reward to purchase a soda or candy bar or even better getting a home cooked meal or sweet treat. We would barter with our neighboring farmers too. Pumpkins for apples. Pickles for honey. Planting a new crop for better soil to grow a different crop next year. My mom had me help her plant a flower garden out front of the house and we kept finding monies under rocks around the garden. People were cutting flowers from the garden and leaving monies. We decided to put a good shears and lock box out by the garden once we figured out what was going on. The baby animals were my favorite! Thanks for sharing – this made my day 🙂 Happy Day – Enjoy

  6. I will be in MN in Sept. maybe I will see the pumpkin stands. I sure miss the sweet corn this time of year.

  7. Susan Ready Says:

    Trusting in the honesty of people to leave remittance behind is an old fashioned value we don’t see enough of. I always enjoy your blogs that bring to the forefront noted small acts of kindness found within your community. Something we need to see and hear more of.

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