Kimmel Orchard Staff

Welcome to the Kimmel Orchard Staff page. Please scroll down to find out more information about each of our talented staff members and their role.

Kimmel Orchard Staff

Dusty Bowder
General Manager

Since July 2020, Dusty is the Kimmel Orchard and Vineyard General Manager. His responsibilities include managing all aspects of the Orchard and Apple Barn. Dusty is a native of Lincoln, Nebraska, and graduated from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln with a Bachelor of Science in Hospitality, Restaurant, and Tourism Management. Dusty served in the Nebraska Air National Guard as a fire engine mechanic for six years.  He has had numerous opportunities and adventures nationally and internationally managing special events. In his free time, he enjoys outdoor activities including camping and disc golf. He is a huge fan of comic books and superheroes. One last fun fact, he knits stocking hats!  


Carol Heinke
Business Operations

Carol works part-time in our business office and she helps in the Apple Barn during festival weekends. This is Carol’s third season at Kimmel. Originally from Blair, Nebraska, she attended the University of Nebraska–Lincoln after high school. She remained in Lincoln until a few years ago, when she married a Nebraska City farmer, David, and made the big move to the country. After being a “city” gal all her life, she was a bit apprehensive about the change in lifestyle (apparently, she’s watched one too many episodes of Green Acres), but she absolutely loves the country life and the small-town feel of Nebraska City. In her free time, Carol enjoys gardening, doing yard work, helping her husband with farm work and spending time with the newest addition to the farm—11 kittens!

Jesse Mendez
Orchard Team Leader

Jesse has worked in the orchard business for over 20 years and has extensive knowledge in caring for fruit trees. He loves his work and puts passion into everything he does. Apart from being a great leader in the orchard, Jesse loves being in the outdoors and he prides himself in making Kimmel Orchard a destination stop for guests and their families. 

Carlos Serrano
Orchard Team Member

Carlos Serrano has been working for Kimmel Orchard since April of 2012.  Carlos is part of our orchard Field Service Team. This team works hard on maintaining the beauty of the orchard.  Carlos has years of knowledge and experience in all the various crops & trees in the orchard. Carlos is an extremely hard worker and takes a lot of pride in his job.  When Carlos isn’t at Kimmel he enjoys playing soccer and watching movies.

Enrique Aldana
Orchard Team Member

Enrique has been with Kimmel for almost 3 years now and enjoys each different part of his job. His favorite job duties are pruning, picking apples and cider pressing. In his spare time, he enjoys spending time at home and doing yard work. 

Mayra Rodriguez
Orchard Team Member

Mayra Rodriguez has been a Kimmel team member since 2015.  She and her husband Jesus both enjoy working at Kimmel Orchard.  Mayra has a wide variety of jobs she does for the orchard. Some of these include: helping with picking, cleaning, stocking, and various other tasks.  Mayra is the mother of 4 boys. Mayra and Jesus stay very busy with their children and attending their different events.