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Alamance County farmer featured in 2014 documentary bottles milk to keep family farm going

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ALAMANCE COUNTY, N.C. -- Farmer Randy Lewis has what you might call a love-hate relationship with his cows.

"I truly like cows, like everything about them," he said, on his farm in the community of Eli Whitney. "We live our whole life for these cows, you plan your day for everything around them. You get up, you plan your vacation, in our family we plan funerals around people's milking time."

Lewis and his family have been farming for as long as anyone can remember and when they started the dairy farm in the 1960 there were about 100 similar farms in the county.

"Between here and about a mile there were five grade-A dairy farms in 1960 and now there are five left in the county," he said.

In order to save his farm, Lewis decided to start bottling his milk himself and as he or any other dairy farmer will tell you it's a hard way to make a living. His efforts to save the family farm were captured in the 2014 documentary "The Last Barn Dance." The film gained him some fame at film festivals and events in Hollywood.

"You either have to like it or you don't," said Lewis, who rarely takes a vacation but does escape to the hayloft for peace. "Sometimes when I want to take a break I just plop down in that chair look out there at the cows -- this is one of the few peaceful places that there is on this farm."

And he's convinced here is where he's meant to be.

To purchase his milk visit Ran-Lew Dairy.

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