Monday, August 21, 2023

Every Accomplishment Starts With the Decision to Try

Every accomplishment starts with the decision to try. Many times the hardest part of an accomplishment is not the countless hours studying, the practices attended, or even the new skills learned; instead, it is writing your name on a signup sheet, attending that very first practice, or deciding to give something new a try.  This fall you will have many opportunities to add your name to a signup sheet.

Callie Comer from South Ripley took the risk to try something new by attending District Kickoff for the very first time.  Callie says, “Kickoff led me to see many people in FFA that I already knew and was already friends with, but it also led me to make tons of new friends who I hoped to see at future contests and events. Kickoff was a great opportunity to meet new people from around my district. It was also a great way to kick off the FFA year!”

Stephanie Berenda from South Newton made the decision to attend her first soils practice. When I asked Stephanie about her soils judging experience she said, “Soils judging was my first competitive experience in FFA. I joined as a young member, and the high schoolers took me under their wing - not only during practice, but in school and other FFA activities. They encouraged me to become more active in FFA, ultimately growing my passion for FFA and agriculture.”

It can be a little frightening to sign up for that first overnight conference, but Jenna Lawler from Rushville added her name to the signup sheet.  After attending SOAR Jenna said,  “The opportunity to go to SOAR changed my perspective about our purpose in FFA and allowed me to make lifelong friendships.”

Clair Simpson from Southmont found her passion for Livestock Skill-a-Thon by not shying away from the first practice.  She stated, “Livestock Skill-a-Thon is probably my favorite CDE. I love it because it gives me a chance to learn how to take better care of my livestock. It's a great opportunity to learn about all sides of meat production from feeding and medicating animals to the different meat cuts provided by our livestock. Skill-a-Thon gave me a new perspective on the livestock industry, and encouraged so much growth in me as an FFA member and agriculturalist.”

FFA members, over the next year, you will have the opportunity to reach countless accomplishments and make some amazing memories.  Remember, every accomplishment starts with the simple decision to sign up.

So, go add your name to that signup sheet and let the adventure begin!

Blaine Wagner, Southern Region Vice President

Tuesday, August 8, 2023

Carson’s State Fair “Must-Do’s”

    The Great Indiana State Fair is finally here! While I may not have as much experience at the State Fair as some of my other teammates, especially when it comes to being in the show barns, I would love to share some of my “must-do’s” when spending the day on the fairgrounds! 

1. Stop by the Corteva Agriscience Indiana FFA Pavilion 

a. I may be biased to this part of the State Fair, but it is honestly one of my favorite places to go to or work. You can play a game of mini golf, see some abordable animals, and learn more about agriculture! This would not be possible without the countless members that volunteer their time to set up and work the pavilion, so shout out to y’all! 

2. Pineapple Dole Whip 

a. This is hands down my absolute favorite fair food! It’s refreshing, sweet, and tasty. What’s not to like about this amazing treat? Do not drive across the fairgrounds with an extra cup of Dole Whip for one of your teammates because it will melt and go everywhere … rookie mistake. Run, do not walk to the closest little pineapple! 

3. Tour the Department of Natural Resources (DNR) Building 

a. Anytime my family and I went to the State Fair, we always made sure to stop by the DNR Building. Whether you prefer fishing in the pond or looking at all the fish that are native to Indiana, it is always a blast, and I would definitely recommend it!

If you have the opportunity to stop by The Indiana State Fair, make sure to do these three things and come see the new State Officer Team! We hope to see you there! 

See you soon, 

Carson Rudd 

State Reporter 2023-2024