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Testimonials

Testimonials

Check out what others have to say about Pipestem Creek Bed and Birding.

Birding Testimonials

Bobolink
A bobolink singing in the morning choir. Photo by the BirdChick.


Birdchick.com June 2007

While in North Dakota, I had the good fortune to stay in a trailer converted into a cabin called the Bobolink on the property of Pipestem Creek. If you are planning a visit to North Dakota, I highly recommend staying here. The photos on their site show the cabin, it can sleep six if you are willing to share a double bed (I'm way too floppy in sleep and shouldn't inflict it on anyone apart from Non Birding Bill). Otherwise, it easily sleeps four--two double beds and two singles. It's cozy, clean, has a full kitchen and living room with bird, plant and mushroom books.

There were bobolinks singing around the cabin. There is an incredible dawn chorus, which is worth the price of admission alone. The loudest and earliest singer was the western kingbird. He started at about 4am.

Tours of the facility and production are available when you visit. I was so impressed when I went through. We carried some of these when I worked at the bird store and to see the process from creation to the shelf was pretty darned incredible. Ann also really loves the birds and is very involved in organizing and promoting the festival, she's as dedicated to preserving the birds and wildlife in her state as she is to her business. As a matter of fact, if you pick up a Birding Drives Dakota brochure, that's her in all the photos.

Tours of the facility and production are available when you visit. I was so impressed when I went through. We carried some of these when I worked at the bird store and to see the process from creation to the shelf was pretty darned incredible. Ann also really loves the birds and is very involved in organizing and promoting the festival, she's as dedicated to preserving the birds and wildlife in her state as she is to her business. As a matter of fact, if you pick up a Birding Drives Dakota brochure, that's her in all the photos.

The goldfinches covered the ground snarfing up all the spilled seed. Killdeer nested along the gravel roadways, I found three pairs just along the gravel covered loading area in back.

Other birds around Pipestem Creek include orchard oriole (nesting) and Baltimore oriole (nesting). It's a cool place, and I highly recommend staying there.

Sharon, the Bird Chick.


Pipestem Creek Testimonials

Indian Corn Birdhouse
American Profile - Sept 9-15,2007

American Artisan - Fashioning Seed into Bird Feed by Cynthia Elyce Rubin.

"... in addition to the multitude of customers around the nation who have fallen in love with her all-natural products, people come from all over to tour Pipestem Creek's gardens, observe the production process and share Hoffert's artful vision.

"Using the skills and ingenuity of a true pioneer," says former North Dakota Gov. Ed Schafer from his home in Fargo, "Ann creates products of worldwide appeal that allow her to live and work in the rural area she loves."


Business Week May/June 2007

Story by Crystal R. Reid, Bismarck Tribune (excerpts)

"We became a tourist destination because it's the nature of our business," Ann said. A tour takes visitors through old-fashioned buildings salvaged by the family, repainted, and set up for drying and storage. They have an old train depot and granaries, small barns and cabins.

... if the production shops aren't open, she has always welcomed people to walk around her gardens any time of the day, to saunter through her property and see the flowers before they become product.


Watch It Made In The U.S.A.

2007

Pipestem Creek's local factory tour has been selected and featured as one of the best in the U.S.A. by factory tour experts Karen Axelrod and Bruce Brumberg in the new edition of their book, Watch It Made in the U.S.A.

"Here at Pipestem Creek, we use our tour as a tool for demonstrating our commitment to quality, education, and a lot of fun," said Ann Hoffert, Owner. "We are proud they featured our company tour in the book and have given our manufacturing efforts and pride in the Made in the U.S.A. label national attention.

A factory tour adds a fun, memorable experience. Pipestem Creek creates home decorating accessories, homegrown and handmade. Products come from nature and return to nature as edible birdfeeders. Nearly all the components of the handmade designs are grown on site. Several historic granary buildings and a train depot were moved onto the farm and restored by Pipestem Creek. They house the drying, shipping, production, and gift-shop facilities. If you visit during summer, your tour guide will walk you past a big farmhouse and through the private gardens to admire the hundreds of feet of rainbow-colored beds planted in everlastings and unique edible grains and grasses and corn. Watching the flowers and grains being assembled by hand into works of art is always a fascinating part of the tour.

See photos and read more about Pipestem Creek under Tours and About Us (tabs at top of page).


Arrowwood  NWR
Ann Hoffert birdwatching on Arrowwood NWR. Tom Bean Photo
Birds & Blooms, Dec/Jan 2003

It's all part of Pipestem Creek, the business Ann started in 1992 and named after the stream that flows near the farm. She uses materials like Indian corn, sunflower seeds and sorghum to make a wide selection of edible bird feeders, birdhouses and wreaths.

With her experience as a bird-watcher, Ann knew these nutritious seeds were at the top of the avian menu.

One of the most recent ideas is the Lewis and Clark wreath. It celebrates the 2003 bicentennial of the Corps of Discovery, the expeditionary group Meriweather Lewis and William Clark led.

It's also fitting because, like the famous explorers, Ann has done a little trailblazing of her own.

Larkspur and Limelight
Larkspur and Limelight ready for hanging to dry in the flower granary
Prairie Business, March 2002

Life is for the birds! And what a nutritious and beautiful life it can be if Ann Hoffert of Pipestem Creek has her way. North Dakota's 1995 Outstanding Woman in Business continues the sucess she began in 1990 when she opened her company located just ouside of Carrington.

Ann knows birds. Growing up on the family farm, she loved nature and watched birds

from the time she was a little girl. She's continued watching and feeding them wherever she's lived. She knows what they like to eat. Birds are either seed eaters or insect eaters. If a bird is a seed eater, it will prefer to eat sunflower seeds.

Pipestem Creek specialized in creating beautiful natural wreath and swag designs for home decorations, and almost totally edible birdfeeders. Both combine natural grasses, grains, and flowers in attractive designs that are initially intended for decoration.

Sunflower Field and Farm
Sunflower field and farm
Area Woman, Nov/Dec 2001

The early days of Pipestem were challenging, to state it kindly. "Every creature loves sunflowers," Ann ruefully remembers. "Our first year, we lost over 80 percent of the sunflowers because of mice, squirrels, birds and deer."

This year, Pipestem Creek will have products in Plow and Hearth, Jackson & Perkins, Seasons, and Duncraft. Her products are also in Wild Birds outlets and gift, floral stores and nurseries across the country.

One pleasureable outcome of her "marketing obsesion" has been an ongoing relationship with the staff for Martha Stewart. A few years ago, "Martha Stewart Living" came out to Pipestem Creek and spent a few days taking pictures and gathering information for its story. Since then, Ann has had several calls for specialty items--including an emergency call for corn silk and cornhusks to use in the Nov. 5 television show.

2005 Wheat Field
Wheat Field
North Dakota Horizons, Winter 1999

Former First Lady Nancy Schafer says, "Ann is a perfect example of someone who is taking North Dakota resources and crafting them into a very attractive product. She is enhancing the state of North Dakota and its image with her products. Ann also gives women the confidence to say they can do it too! Even though Ann is the first to say she has made mistakes, she has put those mistakes to good use and moved forward. Women in the rural areas will create a new infrastructure and they will find new ways of doing things."

Avian Feast
Avian Feast with red cockscomb
North Dakota REC RTC, Dec 1999

Pipestems Creek's (wreaths) have a natural beauty and design all their own, combining grasses, grains, berries and herbs, along with spots of color. These versatile, artistic pieces work with virtually any home deocr. Once (they) have lost their appeal inside, they can be put in the yard to attract and feed favorite birds.


Sunburst-style wreath
This wreath (PC101)is one of the first designs and is one of the most popular .
Martha Stewart Living, Nov 1998

This is fertile earth indeed. Here on the North Dakota prairie, where the fields of sunflowers and wheat stretch to the horizon, an idea was born. Inspired by the land she was raised on, Ann Hoffert began a business making wreaths and other natural decorations from materials that birds love to eat.

With her unique products, Ann has managed to carve out a niche in the competitive craft industry.

Her products have been sold in catalogs such as Robert Redford's Sundance, Jackson & Perkins, and Horchow; in stores like Wild Birds Unlimited and Wild Bird Centers; and they're featured in wholesale showrooms in gift markets across the country.

E-Mails from Customers

Rcvd October 18, 2007. L.W. of Pingree, ND, wrote:

"Just wanted to let you know what a wonderful experience my family and I had during our visit with you yesterday. You have a beautiful area filled with such treasures! You truly are talented to take the beauty of the things God has created and turn them into works of art. My children have a better appreciation of nature and walked away with a mini-history lesson! Thank-you. I am inspired myself to start creating! I have guineas that are in molt right now and have been dropping the most beautiful feathers and I have been trying to figure out what to do with them! I think a wreath is in my future..... :) Blessings to you and your whole family, and when my family comes to visit from FL you will definitely be on our list of sites to see.....thanks again for a wonderul afternoon."

L.W.
Pingree, ND


Rcvd November 17, 2005. P.D. of Findlay, OH, wrote:

"Just a quick note to tell you my small order of sunflower heads and a variety of dried flowers came in a few days ago and I'm absolutely so delighted I found you all those years ago. You continue to be so service-oriented, and you accommodated my request for smaller quanitites and you hand-picked, I'm sure, those perfect heads at an excellent price. Thank you!!!

"There are so few places out there anymore whose quality of product and quality of service go hand-in-hand. Pipestem Creek is one of them."

P. D.
Findlay, OH





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return to nature

Ann Hoffert with Martha Stewart on the set of Martha Stewart Living filming
a segment that aired in November of 2002. Photo by Vanessa Lenz.

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