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FFA State Convention: Fun, Farming, and Friends

Ella Decker, EMC Staff Writer

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The Fun

Twice a day, nearly 2,000 students, advisors and officers gathered in the Morrisville College Rec Center for what was called Session which included games, dancing, 60 second challenges and our routine meeting.  The energy in the room was always booming.  When our state officers took their positions, we formed human arches to welcome them.  After reciting our pledge to FFA, we were able to congratulate the members who earned a spot at Nationals for their accomplishments that day and throughout the year.

The first night we were able to attend a Jerrod Niemann concert and get to know students from FFA chapters across the state.  After the concert we attended an ice cream social and indulged in vanilla ice cream made in the on-campus creamery.

During Session #4 on Friday afternoon, the Peterson Brothers performed for us and explained their experiences balancing farming and fame.  They do parodies of hit songs and make them about farming in order to promote an appreciation for farming.  After that excitement, there was more to come– a Glow Run/walk and fireworks.  (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=toyN81wZzLw)  Check the Peterson Bros. out!

 

The Farming

A lot of people think FFA is about tractors and cows, but there is way more to it.  We had the opportunity to attend engineering, renewable resources, and floraculture workshops.  There were also discussion meets, which is a competition in which judges give topics that require you to do research for months before.  Participants earn points based on the relevant facts they discuss. One of the topics was immigration and the policies related to helping legal documented jobs get agricultural jobs.  Another workshop was in the dairy barn and allowed participants to perform an AI (artificial insemination) on a cow’s reproductive tract.  

Farmers are competitive too.  A bunch of 17 year old boys challenged each other to a “tractor pull.”  This involved the boys using ropes and pulling school buses and tractors with some insane muscle power.

 

The Friends

Galway was represented by 11 girls ranging in age from 12-17 from the Galway FFA chapter plus Ms. Clifford and Mrs. Donnan. Dorm life was a bit odd for some of us.  We were on different floors on a different side of the building.  We had to figure out showers, blinds, and how to stay warm under thin blankets.  Lucky for us, we had made friends upon arriving. The Schuylerville Chapter shared a bus with us and we all connected with Adam, Johnny and Chrissy. Adam plays the guitar, which was exciting for me because I am not sure I can go a whole three days without touching one. We jammed on the bus and at the fireworks. What I loved about State Convention is that all the kids could relate to one another, we were all around the same age and clearly had common interests since we were there. It was definitely a fun learning experience that I will definitely be taking part in next year. We clean up pretty nice too in our LEGENDARY corduroy FFA jackets.

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FFA State Convention: Fun, Farming, and Friends