So how big is that tire? FFA – Louisville was filled with large farm equipment!

Linda Dennis, Program Manager

Ms. D standing next to the "big" tire - tractor
Ms. D standing next to the “big” tire – tractor

LOUISVILLE, Kentucky – IGNITE – FFA Expo

It’s over now, and the large farm equipment we are certain have been returned to their factories surely on large truck trailers.  One of the special treats for Ms. D was to visit the numerous booths filled with the FFA youth wearing blue coats, and enjoying the educational values provided by each company.  Over 200 photos were taken of the exhibits, but as important were the 156 youth who attended the “What’s your story” workshop, sponsored by A Backpack Journalist.  Youth were paired up with another that they did not know, and the fun interview began.  Following this, each team then picked up a camera and had fun shooting a digital portrait. The digital portraits and FFA outtakes  can be found on our flickr account (www.flickr.com/photos/backpackjournalsit).   IMG_0302

Here goes with some of our favorite moments!

  • The best booth-mates ever!  The entire team of youth and their Admissions Director from The Central Christian College of the Bible.  What fun they were to talk to and learn all about their school, plus watch them engage with the FFA youth!
  • Like the photo shows.  BIG tires.  BIG Equipment every where!  John Deere – Case – New Holland
  • Stihl – yep – they brought their long saws and right on stage – two mountain men raced to cut the tree!  What fun!
  • Tractor Supply!  Music brought the FFA youth together to line dance, and also to visit their tattoo parlor.
  • Cars – Cars – Cars!  Ford  – Toyota!   Love watching the truck beds with the youth gathering!
  • Ducks Unlimited gave away lots of great posters, but the lines to their video game never ended!
  • Kudos to BUSCH Gardens for bringing their bus filled with great examples of the animals one can see at their locations! busch-gardens Their staff was constantly on the expo floor letting the youth see the animals first hand.  (Plus Ms. D was able to get a great shot of an Horn Owl!  See the other photo here.)
  • Learning all about Cow Clipping and seeing in the eyes of a young graduate of Morris College her excitement and passion for traveling the state of New York and working with dairy farmers!  Go for it Lyndsey!
  • Meeting a FFA youth from Illinois, who at 17 has his own freelance business established, and is a social media whiz!
  • Learning about the World Hunger project sponsored by FFA, and meeting the youth who were the escorts through the exhibit.  Right on!
  • US Army ROTC – from the University of Louisville – and the amazing exhibit filled with even the Military Dogs and displays of all the different opportunities available in the US Army.
  • Stand and be Heard!  The $10,000 scholarship award for the best focal presentation of the Star Spangled Banner!  We got to meet Nicolle the 2013 winner.  By FMC.
  • Wrangler brought in a rodeo rider – dressed for sure in Wranglers.
  • The Shopping Area filled with vendors offering just about every little thing one could imagine and one special little boy is to receive a tractor!  (small but just like the big one)
  • Seeing many military youth who are also members of FFA and getting hugs from one special teen from Oregon.
  • Spending time with advisors who really care so much about their FFA youth and want to help make their education a positive experience.
  • A special shout out to the Texas group…you all made our FFA experience!
  • And, alas – meeting the Mountain Man from Duck Dynasty and then watching Steve Brown – on stage walking out with this long beard!  Then speaking to the Robertson team and their success!

A BIG SHOUT OUT and THANKS also to the hundreds of youth and their advisors who stopped by our booth – picked up information on the National Cowboy Poetry Competition – and confirmed their interest!

And to the Cowboy Poet who stood by daily for an update…The National Cowboy Poetry Competition is officially launched!   Thank you FFA Members!