Capital Press | FFA Capital Press Wed, 18 Jan 2017 12:29:06 -0500 en Capital Press | FFA Moses Lake High School greenhouse vandalized Tue, 3 Jan 2017 11:56:13 -0500 Matw Weaver Vandals have damaged plants that students were raising in partnership with a local seed company in the Moses Lake, Wash., High School greenhouse.

The school’s agriculture teacher and FFA adviser, Tony Kern, told the Capital Press the damage occurred Dec. 29.

“Stuff was just chucked on the ground,” he said. “It’s just frustrating. You just want to go, ‘What are you doing? What is the purpose here? Really?’”

The vandals also spray-painted graffiti in the greenhouse.

Half of a science class’ geranium projects were also damaged.

School officials are reviewing security camera footage, Kern said.

The plants were part of a genetics study done in partnership with the McKay Seed Co. in Moses Lake. The seed company hoped to use the greenhouse space to help develop new lines of wheat, barley, buckwheat and quinoa, and partner with the school to provide experience and internship possibilities.

Kern said the seeds were planted in September.

Fabio Pedraza, a plant breeder at McKay Seed, estimated roughly 50 percent of the plants were salvageable.

Kern and Pedraza said the cost of the damage is relatively small.

Much of the damage is time lost, Pedraza said.

It takes a year to make an experimental cross, raise it in a greenhouse and have something to plant in field trials the following year, he said.

Some identification tags were also removed, making it difficult to tell which plant is which, Pedraza said.

Pedraza expects the partnership with the school to continue.

“Hopefully it will blossom into something that ends up being really neat and beneficial for our kids as well as McKay Seed,” Kern said. “It’s really a neat opportunity.”

McKay plans to update equipment and install new lights over three years in the school’s older greenhouse, Kern said.

The partnership will help FFA students learn from “real, true scientific studies,” Kern said.

“Tons of kids like science or think they like science, but they don’t really make that connection to a job,” he said.

Meridian FFA ‘Transforms’ at 2016 National FFA Convention Fri, 16 Dec 2016 12:07:23 -0500 Loretta Lacy2016-2017 Meridian FFA Reporter In March and April of last school year, the Meridian FFA Chapter attended the Idaho State Career Development Events (CDEs). Four of Meridian’s teams placed first in the state, qualifying them for national competition.

Along with the members of the four qualifying teams, three chapter delegates and two American Degree recipients attended this year’s National Convention.

The 2016 National FFA Convention was held from Tuesday, Oct. 19, until Saturday, Oct. 22, in Indianapolis, Indiana. Not only was this convention a place for top state teams to showcase their talents, but it also held the largest FFA store, a college and career show, multiple sessions run by national officers, and several great keynote speakers.

Meridian’s Environmental and Natural Resources team placed 3rd in the nation with a gold ranking. This year 42 other teams competed for a total of 168 members. The following members competed for Meridian FFA:

• Maddie Bennett (2nd high individual, gold ranking).

• Karlyn Roberts (gold ranking).

• Connor Burgin (gold ranking).

• William Stokes (silver ranking).

The Meridian FFA Veterinary Science team placed 4th in the nation with a gold ranking. There were 44 other teams that competed this year. The Meridian members were:

• Kristin Nesbitt (2nd high individual, gold ranking).

• Loretta Lacy (gold ranking).

• Hannah Krichbaum (gold ranking).

• Lauren Anderson (gold ranking).

The Meridian Agriculture Marketing Plan team was a semi-finalist with a silver ranking. The team consisted of:

• Kate Johnson (silver ranking).

• Mackenzie Brown (silver ranking).

• Nikki Elletson (silver ranking).

Meridian’s Dairy Cattle Evaluation and Management team placed 18th in the nation with a silver ranking. This year 48 other teams also competed in this CDE at nationals. The following members of our team were:

• Ashlyn Schiers (silver ranking).

• Trace Beaucannon (silver ranking).

• Zach Phillips (silver ranking).

• Alexa Phillips (silver ranking).

Meridian FFA also had two American Degree recipients: Kaedy Peck is a sophomore at the University of Idaho majoring in agribusiness and Hayden Turnbough is studying biology in her second year at the College of Western Idaho.

The American Degree is the highest degree that can be awarded in FFA. A member must be a year out of high school and has to have been a member all four years of high school to apply for this prestigious award. Only 3 percent of all members nationwide achieve this award; it is an honor to be a recipient.

Meridian FFA also had three delegates attend the National Convention. Mallie Miller and Kobe Manzer represented our chapter for the National Chapter Award and Bailey Josoff attended as a senior member.

Our members had an amazing time at the National Convention this year and they highly recommend that all FFA members make it a goal to attend during their high school career. This year our chapter toured Chicago and the Indianapolis Speedway. Mallie Miller’s favorite part of the National Convention was being able to meet members from all over the country.

“My favorite part of nationals this year was competing in Dairy Cattle Evaluation and Management and touring the Indianapolis Speedway.” says Alexa Phillips.

Kate Johnson felt that nationals was an incredible learning and competitive experience. She is very grateful that she had the opportunity to attend.

Meridian FFA would like to thank the Meridian FFA Alumni, Ada County Farm Bureau, the Meridian Dairy Board, and the United Dairymen of Idaho for their generous donations to help our members get to Nationals this year. We would also like to thank all of the advisors that attended this trip with the members and coached our CDE teams: Mr. Shane Stevenson, Mrs. Lorraine Wikoff, Mrs. Renee Peugh, Mrs. Trish Stokes, and Mr. Steve Wilder. The 20 members that attended this October are very grateful for the tremendous help and support from all these individuals and groups.

Perrydale FFA food donations top 260,000 pounds Mon, 12 Dec 2016 13:08:32 -0500 Geoff Parks AMITY, Ore. — Perrydale High School FFA Chapter’s Food For All Program winds up this month with the lofty goal of distributing over 130 tons of locally collected agricultural produce to needy families in Oregon.

The program, now in its 19th year, was started by former long-time Perrydale FFA Chapter Adviser Kirk Hutchinson. It’s now headed by second-year adviser Christina Lorenz, but “Hutch” takes an active role in each year’s collection and distribution efforts.

Students from all of Perrydale’s three public schools help the high school FFA chapter’s members gather, package and distribute the donated vegetables and other produce — from onions to squash, beets and other items — to needy people up and down the Willamette Valley. The efforts extend to the central Oregon Coast and Eastern Oregon as well.

“Each year, I am beyond impressed with the pride that my students take in this project,” Lorenz said. “It’s inspiring to see that tomorrow’s leaders are selfless and generous people who want to make their world a better place for everyone.”

Lorenz is also Perrydale High’s agriculture curriculum instructor.

The busload of kids, accompanied by Hutch and a large flatbed truck, made stops at several donor plants and warehouses to collect food and chat with the businesses’ representatives during a collection stop on Dec. 1. The route wound up the Willamette Valley from Perrydale along Highway 99E through Salem, Canby and farther northeast.

Stops at places such as EZ Orchards and Schlecter Farms were intended to introduce the FFA students to the donor’s plants and warehouses, watch the loading activities and chat with owners and managers.

EZ Orchards was the first stop, and the bus then headed up the corridor to NW Onion Co. in Brooks.

Duane Olson, NW Onion’s sales manager, had a big grin on his face and was clearly enjoying giving away 400 sacks (10 tons) of yellow onions to the FFA program’s “ambassadors” that gathered at the company’s warehouse.

Both Kevin Zielinski, Olson and principals of the other warehouse stops along the way received an FFA award “For Outstanding Service and Contributions” from Perrydale FFA Chapter President Sierra Starr and handshakes from all the kids.

“This project allows students build valuable partnerships with business and industry professionals, which leads to a strong professional network upon graduation,” Lorenz said. “(The project) also allows them to build employability skills while serving their community.”

Food For All gathered one tote of potatoes from Salem’s Kettle Foods when the program began in 1998. Since then, totals have risen each year from 10,000 pounds of food to 211,000 pounds in 2010 and over 260,000 pounds last year.

California FFA raises funds for members’ jackets Mon, 14 Nov 2016 12:08:06 -0500 Tim Hearden GALT, Calif. — The California FFA Foundation is raising money for blue corduroy jackets for students who can’t afford to purchase them.

This year’s fundraiser is Nov. 29, and the FFA foundation wants to raise at least $6,500 — enough to give a jacket with a tie or scarf to 100 students.

Katie Otto, the foundation’s development director, said many students have to borrow jackets from their chapter for competitions and events.

“A lot of them didn’t have the means to have their own jackets,” she said. “Definitely for me it illustrated the need (to help) all of our students who don’t have the opportunity to have a jacket with their name on it that fits comfortably.”

The push started during the run-up to the Sacramento area’s Big Day of Giving on May 4, during which local residents and businesses donated more than $22,000 to support FFA and agricultural education.

The foundation sent emails to members and supporters, and many of them told emotional stories about what their jackets meant to them, Otto said.

“It kind of becomes their identity,” she said, adding that some members still have their parents’ or grandparents’ jackets.

“After we did the Big Day of Giving, we talked about online giving,” Otto said. “I had heard of Giving Tuesday in the past but I didn’t know much about it. ... With Thanksgiving being an opportunity to be thankful and give back, it made sense.”

Giving Tuesday is a United Nations Foundation-sponsored movement to encourage philanthropy at the beginning of the holiday season.

Started in 2012, Giving Tuesday always falls on the Tuesday after Thanksgiving, on the heels of Black Friday and Cyber Monday.

“At the minimum we’d love to give away 100 jackets,” Otto said. “It would be great if we could give one to a member of every chapter (in California). There are 328 chapters.”

For information and to donate, visit

Meridian FFA members compete in fall CDEs Thu, 10 Nov 2016 12:29:56 -0500 Loretta LacyMeridian FFA Chapter Reporter To prepare for the Idaho FFA State CDEs in the spring, several district Career Development Events (CDEs) are held during fall semester to help prepare members.

In the past two months, Boise Valley and Western Idaho FFA districts have hosted four CDE competitions: Dairy Foods, Dairy Judging, Soils Evaluation, and Range.

Soils Evaluation and Range CDEs are competitions that qualify for state level competitions. The rest of the competitions are for practice and do not inhibit or promise the chance to compete at the state level.

Members find a CDE that they find interesting and try out for that team. If they make the team, they then have the chance to compete in the district level of competition. Our members are very passionate about their chosen CDEs and they find that they learn a lot.

The Boise Valley District (BVD) Dairy Judging CDE was held on Sept. 21 in Melba, Idaho. This CDE consists of judging the conformation of cows, heifers, and calves, and presenting a set of oral reasons on your placings to a judge. The members also answer a set of questions on DHI (Dairy Herd Improvement) records. Meridian’s official Dairy Judging team placed 5th.

The following members competed in Dairy Judging on the official team:

• Will Sutton (7th place individual).

• Cody Duff (10th place individual).

• Jordan Bettencourt.

• Kaitlyn Steppe.

The following members were Dairy Judging alternates:

• Lauren Jackson.

• Rose Frazee.

• Jayson Hibbs.

• Mike Varin.

• Madison Stroebel.

• Savannah Christensen.

• Kyleigh Davis.

• Brock Shurtz.

Cody Duff’s favorite part of Dairy Judging is being able to spend time with the cows because they truly are “man’s best friend.” Members participate in this CDE because they love spending time with the animals and being able to learn more about them. Dairy Judging takes a lot of practice, time and effort. The members that make this team, and other teams, spend countless hours perfecting their skills.

The Dairy Foods CDE consists of tasting and grading dairy products, such as cheese and milk contaminants, and the identification of dairy vs. nondairy products. There is also a dairy knowledge test. This CDE was also held on Sept. 21 in Melba.

The following members competed in Dairy Foods:

• Kaitlyn Steppe (5th place individual).

• Madison Stroebel.

• Lauren Jackson.

• Jayson Hibbs.

• Rose Frazee.

• Cameron King.

• Brock Shurtz.

Kaitlyn Steppe enjoys this CDE not only because she enjoys being exposed to the dairy industry, but because she also gets to see the different types of careers that are being offered within this industry. Our members often become passionate about their CDEs, which leads to them looking for jobs in that field.

The District Soils Evaluation CDE was held in New Plymouth, Idaho, on Sept. 29. This was Meridian’s first time competing in years. Meridian’s Soils Evaluation team placed 3rd at the district competition, which qualified them for this state competition. Meridian’s Soils Evaluation team placed 9th and our Range team placed 11th at the state competition in Burley, Idaho, in October.

The following members competed in Soils:

• Bailey Josoff.

• Hailey Buffham.

• Kennedy Cox.

• Kobe Manzer.

• Wilson Dowdle.

• Martha Hirschi.

The following members competed in Range at state:

• Lauren Jackson.

• Hailey Buffham.

• Cameron King.

Cameron King says, “The most enjoyable part of the Range CDE is the plant identification.” When asked what his favorite part of the Soils CDE is, Kobe Manzer replies, “I love Soils Evaluation because it’s very hands-on and it really gives us the chance to interact with the land.”

None of these CDEs would be possible without the help of many amazing people. Thank you to Casper’s Dairy for hosting the Boise Valley District Dairy Judging CDE.

Meridian FFA would also like to thank Rudi DeWinkle for being the official Dairy Cattle judge.

Thank you to Carma Forsberg for putting together the Boise Valley District Dairy Foods CDE.

Meridian FFA would also like to thank Clay Peak Landfill in Payette, Idaho, and Shawn Nield, Idaho state soil scientist, for hosting and putting on the district Soils Evaluation CDE.

Oregon team places second in Ag Sales at national FFA convention Mon, 7 Nov 2016 10:51:23 -0500 Geoff Parks YAMHILL, Ore. — A four-person team of Yamhill-Carlton High School students came away from the recent National FFA Convention with second place in Ag Sales — and the team’s youngest member took first place overall in the competition.

Before their Oct. 19-22 visit to Indianapolis to compete against and mingle with 63,000 of their FFA peers, 17-year-olds Elsie Duyn and Abbey Berhorst, along with Ryan Berhorst, 14, and 18-year-old Liberty Greenlund had to navigate their way through a series of district and state FFA competitions.

The chapter took second in the seven-chapter District FFA contest earlier this year and first place in the Oregon state FFA event, said Y-C chapter president Duyn. She also took first place in the individual Hog Proficiency competition at the state meet.

The national second place in Ag Sales that was conferred upon the Y-C team was bolstered by Ryan Berhorst’s individual first place finish. The Y-C freshman came out on top of a group of 160 FFA members from around the country to earn $1,000 and an impressive plaque.

Greenlund graduated from Y-C in June and is the Oregon FFA secretary. She and the two other young women on the team were effusive about both the team’s second-place success and Ryan’s individual triumph in Ag Sales.

“Ryan was a ‘pick-me-up,’” said Duyn. Y-C’s was an all-girls team until one of the students headed off to Purdue University and Ryan — Abbey’s younger brother — became available.

“We picked him up two months before the national competition,” said Duyn. He was on the team that also found second-place success in district competition.

“He was really the only one in our chapter who had experience with (the Ag Sales competition), so we just figured, ‘Why not?’” Abbey said of her younger brother.

Greenlund added that she felt Ryan, the only freshman in the national competition, “put his whole heart and soul into it.”

“For the national competition, they actually chose the product for us, which was John Deere balers,” Ryan said. “So we studied all the manufacturer’s balers, the features and benefits of each of them.”

“We had to know those balers inside and out, because we didn’t know which questions would be asked,” Duyn said.

She said that since the four-member team “basically spent most of our entire summer” studying at the home of one of the coaches — Greg Wildhaber — they were planning a reunion dinner there to celebrate their accomplishments.

The four members also have plans after high school. Greenlund is traveling the state in her position as state FFA secretary and will attend Eastern Oregon University next year, while Duyn heads to Linfield College to study nursing and Abbey Berhorst has her eyes on the Eastern Oregon University agricultural education program.

The youngest member, Ryan Berhorst, has yet to settle on a definite course after high school. He claims an interest — for now — in underwater welding, but indicated that may change.

FFA Western Career Development winners Mon, 24 Oct 2016 15:50:14 -0500 INDIANAPOLIS — Following is a list of Career Development winners from the West. Note: Some categories were unavailable at press time.

2nd Place — Oregon: Claire Wilson, Shasta Jundt, and Emily Vandehey, all of Hermiston FFA

Top Individuals

4th Place — Emily Vandehey of Hermiston FFA, Ore.

Gold Emblem Teams

Hermiston FFA, Ore.

Mount Baker FFA,Wash.

Silver Emblem Teams

North Fremont FFA, Idaho

Gold Emblem Individuals

Nora Jorgensen of North Fremont FFA, Idaho

Emily Vandehey of Hermiston FFA, Ore.

Shasta Jundt of Hermiston FFA, Ore.

Ruth Pilat of Mount Baker FFA, Wash.

Kendal Schorr of Mount Baker FFA, Wash.

Silver Emblem Individuals

Haiden Cecil of North Fremont FFA, Idaho

Macy Rankin of North Fremont FFA, Idaho

Claire Wilson of Hermiston FFA, Ore.

1st Place — California: Eliseo Diaz, Madeline Franke, Jose Juarez, Isaac Martinez, Saul Ortiz, and Carlos Torres, all of Galt FFA

Gold Emblem Teams

Galt FFA, Calif.

Silver Emblem Teams

Reardan FFA, Wash.

Bronze Emblem Teams

North Fremont FFA, Idaho

Imbler FFA, Ore.

2nd Place — Oregon: Liberty Greenlund, Elsie Duyn, Abbey Berhorst, and Ryan Berhorst, all of Yamhill-Carlton FFA

5th Place — Washington: Gracie Johnson, Misti Lybbert, Amelia Main, and Brandon Reynolds, all of Stanwood FFA

7th Place — California. Shelby Clifford, Logan Sigmon, Ava Solano-Lim, and Prentyce Hitt, all of Elk Grove FFA

Top Individuals

1st Place: — Ryan Berhorst of Yamhill-Carlton FFA, Ore.

7th Place — Liberty Greenlund of Yamhill-Carlton FFA, Ore.

Gold Emblem Teams

Elk Grove FFA, Calif.

Yamhill-Carlton FFA, Ore.

Stanwood FFA, Wash.

Bronze Emblem Teams

Castleford, FFA, Idaho

Gold Emblem Individuals

Prentyce Hitt of Elk Grove FFA, Calif.

Shelby Clifford of Elk Grove FFA, Calif.

Ava Solano-Lim of Elk Grove FFA, Calif.

Makenna Routt of Castleford FFA, Idaho

Ryan Berhorst of Yamhill-Carlton FFA, Ore.

Abbey Berhorst of Yamhill-Carlton FFA, Ore.

Elsie Duyn of Yamhill-Carlton FFA, Ore.

Liberty Greenlund of Yamhill-Carlton FFA, Ore.

Gracie Johnson of Stanwood FFA, Wash.

Brandon Reynolds of Stanwood FFA, Wash.

Misti Lybbert of Stanwood FFA, Wash.

Silver Emblem Individuals

Amelia Main of Stanwood FFA, Wash.

Bronze Emblem Individuals

Camronn Hale of Castleford FFA, Idaho

Abby Blick of Castleford FFA, Idaho

Top Placing Teams

1st Place — California: Alex Nelson, Caleb Marsh, Jared Kilgore, and Justin Kilgore, all of Bear River FFA

4th Place — Washington: Patrick Kelly, Shane Whittern, Nathan Van Dellen, and Brooks DeWaard, all of Lynden Christian FFA

Top Placing Individuals

2nd Place — Jared Kilgore of Bear River FFA, Calif.

3rd Place — Alex Nelson of Bear River FFA, Calif.

8th Place — Patrick Kelly of Lynden Christian FFA, Wash.

Gold Emblem Teams

Bear River FFA, Calif.

Lynden Christian FFA, Wash.

Silver Emblem Teams

Crater FFA, Ore.

Gold Emblem Individuals

Jared Kilgore of Bear River FFA, Calif.

Caleb Marsh of Bear River FFA, Calif.

Justin Kilgore of Bear River FFA, Calif.

Alex Nelson of Bear River FFA, Calif.

Patrick Kelly of Lynden Christian FFA, Wash.

Shane Whittern of Lynden Christian FFA, Wash.

Nathan Van Dellen of Lynden Christian FFA, Wash.

Silver Emblem Individuals

Cal Duke of Crater FFA, Ore.

Joseph Moeller-Parara of Crater FFA, Ore.

Cole Duke of Crater FFA, Ore.

Brooks DeWaard of Lynden Christian FFA, Wash.

Bronze Emblem Individuals

Brendan Kerrigan of Crater FFA, Ore.

5th Place — Washington: Tessa Jantz, Peyton Curtis, Nathan Naught, and Camden Smith, all of Lind-Ritzville FFA

Gold Emblem Teams

Woodland FFA, Calif.

Lind-Ritzville FFA, Wash.

Silver Emblem Teams

Fruitland FFA, Idaho

Bronze Emblem Teams

Dayton FFA, Ore.

Gold Emblem Individuals

Kevin Keenan of Woodland FFA, Calif.

Lyndi Wax of Woodland FFA, Calif.

Kelsey McLagan of Woodland FFA, Calif.

Peyton Curtis of Lind-Ritzville FFA, Wash.

Tessa Jantz of Lind-Ritzville FFA, Wash.

Nathan Naught of Lind-Ritzville FFA, Wash.

Camden Smith of Lind-Ritzville FFA, Wash.

Silver Emblem Individuals

Sophie Cowgill of Fruitland FFA, Idaho

Morelia Abrego of Dayton FFA, Ore.

Bronze Emblem Individuals

Taylor Phillips of Fruitland FFA, Idaho

Lili Zeng of Fruitland FFA, Idaho

Bailee Heard of Dayton FFA, Ore.

Jimmy Reyes of Dayton FFA, Ore.

2nd Place — Lili Steel of San Luis Obispo FFA, Calif.

3rd Place — Kolton Dahl of Burns FFA, Ore.

Gold Emblem Individuals

Lili Steel of San Luis Obispo FFA, Calif.

Kolton Dahl of Burns FFA, Ore.

Bronze Emblem Individuals

Jakeb Garrard of Declo FFA, Idaho

Loren Negron of Waitsburg FFA, Wash.

4th Place — California: Brandon Almeida, Noah Batista, Donavan Miguel, and Mitchell Coleman, all of Hilmar FFA

Top Placing Individuals

5th Place — Brandon Almeida of Hilmar FFA, Calif.

Gold Emblem Teams

Hilmar FFA, Calif.

Silver Emblem Teams

Meridian FFA, Idaho

Tillamook FFA, Ore.

Gold Emblem Individuals

Brandon Almeida of Hilmar FFA, Calif.

Noah Batista of Hilmar FFA, Calif.

Donavan Miguel of Hilmar FFA, Calif.

Brent Rocha of Tillamook FFA, Ore.

Katie Sherer of Tillamook FFA, Ore.

Michael Velasco of Elma FFA, Wash.

Silver Emblem Individuals

Mitchell Coleman of Hilmar FFA, Calif.

Trace Beaucannon of Meridian FFA, Idaho

Alexa Phillips of Meridian FFA, Idaho

Zachary Phillips of Meridian FFA, Idaho

Ashlyn Schiers of Meridian FFA, Idaho

Samuel M. Johnston of Tillamook FFA, Ore.

Blake Rocha of Tillamook FFA, Ore.

Bronze Emblem Individuals

Kortney Bailey of Elma FFA, Wash

David Downing of Elma FFA, Wash.

Emily Rockey of Elma FFA, Wash.

Silver Emblem Individuals

Savanah Nunes of Castleford FFA, Idaho

Laci Lourenzo of Tillamook FFA, Ore.

Mikhaela Nelson of Elma FFA, Wash.

1st Place — Andrew Skidmore of Atwater FFA, Calif.

Gold Emblem Individuals

Andrew Skidmore of Atwater FFA, Calif.

Silver Emblem Individuals

Joshua Cahoon of Kimberly FFA, Idaho

Mollee Gray of Medical Lake FFA, Wash.

6th Place — Washington: Brittany TeVelde, George De Jong, Gerrit Sterk, and Duncan Sterk, all of Lynden Christian FFA

Top Individuals

1st Place — Harrison Jansen VanBeek of Middleton FFA, Idaho

6th Place — Brittany TeVelde of Lynden Christian FFA, Wash.

Gold Emblem Teams

Middleton FFA, Idaho

Lynden Christian FFA, Wash.

Bronze Emblem Teams

Elk Grove FFA, Calif.

Nyssa FFA, Ore.

Gold Emblem Individuals

Garrett Barnes of Middleton FFA, Idaho

Harrison Jansen VanBeek of Middleton FFA, Idaho

George De Jong of Lynden Christian FFA, Wash.

Duncan Sterk of Lynden Christian FFA, Wash.

Brittany TeVelde of Lynden Christian FFA, Wash.

Silver Emblem Individuals

McKenzie Marsh of Elk Grove FFA, Calif.

Robert Allison of Middleton FFA, Idaho

Garrett Stoneman of Nyssa FFA, Ore.

Gerrit Sterk of Lynden Christian FFA, Wash.

Bronze Emblem Individuals

Karlye Clement of Elk Grove FFA, Calif.

Lane Ibbotson of Elk Grove FFA, Calif.

Sarah Sigmon of Elk Grove FFA, Calif.

Dennet Flores Elizondo of Nyssa FFA, Ore.

Sailor Hartley of Nyssa FFA, Ore.

Savanna Kesler of Nyssa FFA, Ore.

8th Place — Oregon: Emily Patt, Rogue Hartman, Grace M McCracken, and Emma Gibbs, all of Oakland FFA

10th Place — Washington: Nicole Ballard, Zakya Misallati, Kendra Mutch, and Alice Ish, all of Cedarcrest FFA

Gold Emblem Teams

Liberty Ranch FFA, Calif.

Oakland FFA, Ore.

Cedarcrest FFA, Wash.

Silver Emblem Teams

Homedale FFA, ID

Gold Emblem Individuals

Alyssa Snow of Liberty Ranch FFA, Calif.

Madison Fisher of Homedale FFA, Idaho

Emma Gibbs of Oakland FFA, Ore.

Rogue Hartman of Oakland FFA, Ore.

Grace M McCracken of Oakland FFA, Ore.

Emily Patt of Oakland FFA, Ore.

Nicole Ballard of Cedarcrest FFA, Wash.

Alice Ish of Cedarcrest FFA, Wash.

Silver Emblem Individuals

Madison Davison of Liberty Ranch FFA, Calif.

Stevie Saramago of Liberty Ranch FFA, Calif.

Justine Rose of Homedale FFA, Idaho

Jenna Rupp of Homedale FFA, Idaho

Zakya Misallati of Cedarcrest FFA, Wash.

Kendra Mutch of Cedarcrest FFA, Wash.

Bronze Emblem Individuals

Celina Maberto of Liberty Ranch FFA, Calif.

Elizabeth Vargas of Homedale FFA, Idaho

5th Place — Oregon: Reed Middleton, Dylan Westfall, Wyatt Paschal, and Deven Hofbauer, all of Hermiston FFA

6th Place — Idaho: Brock Johnson, Brenna Kindall, Nicholas Petitmermet, and Dystinee Miller, all of Cambridge FFA

Top Placing Individuals

6th Place — Brock Johnson of Cambridge FFA, Idaho

Gold Emblem Teams

Cambridge FFA, Idaho

Hermiston FFA, Ore.

Silver Emblem Teams

Mount Baker FFA, Wash.

Gold Emblem Individuals

Brock Johnson of Cambridge FFA, Idaho

Brenna Kindall of Cambridge FFA, Idaho

Dystinee Miller of Cambridge FFA, Idaho

Nicholas Petitmermet of Cambridge FFA, Idaho

Reed Middleton of Hermiston FFA, Ore.

Silver Emblem Individuals

Deven Hofbauer of Hermiston FFA, Ore.

Wyatt Paschal of Hermiston FFA, Ore.

Erica Brown of Mount Baker FFA, Wash.

Emily Treadaway of Mount Baker FFA, Wash.

Bronze Emblem Individuals

Dylan Westfall of Hermiston FFA, Ore.

Hayden Linderman of Mount Baker FFA, Wash.

Angelika Tikhonov of Mount Baker FFA, Wash.

8th Place — Washington: Asa Morris, Lincoln Grimes, Nick Tanis, and Wyatt Marsing, all of Mount Baker FFA

Gold Emblem Teams

O’Neals-Minarets FFA, Calif.

Mount Baker FFA, Wash.

Silver Emblem Teams

Madison FFA, Idaho

Bronze Emblem Teams

Days Creek FFA, Ore.

Gold Emblem Individuals

Calvin Cacy of O’Neals-Minarets FFA, Calif.

Kailey Lemon of O’Neals-Minarets FFA, Calif.

Shalani Wilcox of Madison FFA, Idaho

Lincoln Grimes of Mount Baker FFA, Wash.

Wyatt Marsing of Mount Baker FFA, Wash.

Asa Morris of Mount Baker FFA, Wash.

Nick Tanis of Mount Baker FFA, Wash.

Silver Emblem Individuals

James Hansen of O’Neals-Minarets FFA, Calif.

Randy Ball of Madison FFA, Idaho

Alex Hartline of Madison FFA, Idaho

Chance Rose of Madison FFA, Idaho

Colton Fuller of Days Creek FFA, Ore.

Brooke Hopfer of Days Creek FFA, Ore.

Bronze Emblem Individuals

Carson Sloas of O’Neals-Minarets FFA, Calif.

Ryan Ogan of Days Creek FFA, Ore.

Jerald Summerfield of Days Creek FFA, Ore.

Gold Emblem Teams

Santa Maria FFA, Calif.

Canby FFA, Ore.

Silver Emblem Teams

Preston FFA, Idaho

Bronze Emblem Teams

Chelan FFA, Wash.

Gold Emblem Individuals

Carla Barrera of Santa Maria FFA, Calif.

Abraham Cardona of Santa Maria FFA, Calif.

Mikhala C. Cook of Santa Maria FFA, Calif.

Lauren Iverson of Canby FFA, Ore.

Olivia McKenzie of Canby FFA, Ore.

Silver Emblem Individuals

Justina Moses of Santa Maria FFA, Calif.

Savannah Beckstead of Preston FFA, Idaho

Krista Jeppson of Preston FFA, Idaho

Afton Stone of Preston FFA, Idaho

Lydia Walsh of Canby FFA, Ore.

Allison Barnes of Chelan FFA, Wash.

Stephanie Olivera of Chelan FFA, Wash.

Ashley Oswald of Chelan FFA, Wash.

Bronze Emblem Individuals

Sydnee Golightly of Preston FFA, Idaho

Rachel McKenzie of Canby FFA, Ore.

Katherine Gleasman of Chelan FFA, Wash.

7th Place — Amber Bjerre of San Luis Obispo FFA, Calif.

Gold Emblem Individuals

Amber Bjerre of San Luis Obispo FFA, Calif.

Silver Emblem Individuals

Wil Jansen Van Beek of Middleton FFA, Idaho

Adriana Baldwin of Canby FFA, Ore.

Morgan Rockey of Elma FFA, Wash.

4th Place — California: Madison Morgan, Ty Jones, Kevin Snyder, and Emma Wright, all of Oakdale FFA

10th Place — Oregon: Sara Shelton, Macen Keller, David Gladman, and Clayre Shaffer, all of Crater FFA

Gold Emblem Teams

Oakdale FFA, Calif.

Crater FFA, Ore.

Lynden FFA, Wash.

Silver Emblem Teams

Kuna FFA, Idaho

Gold Emblem Individuals

Madison Morgan of Oakdale FFA, Calif.

Kevin Snyder of Oakdale FFA, Calif.

Emma Wright of Oakdale FFA, Calif.

Ross Blattner of Kuna FFA, Idaho

Clayre Shaffer of Crater FFA, Ore.

Sara Shelton of Crater FFA, Ore.

Luke Wolfisberg of Lynden FFA, Wash.

Silver Emblem Individuals

Ty Jones of Oakdale FFA, Calif.

JoAn Arnold of Kuna FFA, Idaho

Megan Berheim of Kuna FFA, Idaho

Adam Drake of Kuna FFA, Idaho

David Gladman of Crater FFA, Ore.

Macen Keller of Crater FFA, Ore.

Lindsay Eldred of Lynden FFA, Wash.

Zane Gavette of Lynden FFA, Wash.

Hannah Rusk of Lynden FFA, Wash.

1st Place — California: Erika Matola, Juan Hernandez, and Amanda Skidmore, all of Atwater FFA

Gold Emblem Teams

Atwater FFA, Calif.

Silver Emblem Teams

Meridian FFA, Idaho

Lind-Ritzville FFA, Wash.

2nd Place — Washington: Amanda Bobbitt, Jade Jaspers, Josh Johnson, and Jacob Ball, all of Cashmere FFA

5th Place — California: Mario I Alvarez, Clayton R Sheehan, Jasbir Singh, and Delaney M Morales, all of Madera FFA

Top Placing Individuals

8th Place — Clayton R Sheehan of Madera FFA, Calif.

9th Place — Amanda Bobbitt of Cashmere FFA, Wash.

10th Place — Jade Jaspers of Cashmere FFA, Wash.

Gold Emblem Teams

Madera FFA, Calif.

Cashmere FFA, Wash.

Silver Emblem Teams

Kuna FFA, Idaho

Bronze Emblem Teams

Stanfield FFA, Ore.

Gold Emblem Individuals

Mario I Alvarez of Madera FFA, Calif.

Clayton R Sheehan of Madera FFA, Calif.

Jasbir Singh of Madera FFA, Calif.

Eric Ball of Kuna FFA, Idaho

Jacob Ball of Cashmere FFA, Wash.

Amanda Bobbitt of Cashmere FFA, Wash.

Jade Jaspers of Cashmere FFA, Wash.

Josh Johnson of Cashmere FFA, Wash.

Silver Emblem Individuals

Delaney M Morales of Madera FFA, Calif.

ennifer Ball of Kuna FFA, Idaho

Annie Bass of Kuna FFA, Idaho

Mason Roberts of Kuna FFA, Idaho

Payton Henning of Stanfield FFA, Ore.

Keith Wampler of Stanfield FFA, Ore.

Bronze Emblem Individuals

Brittin Braithwaite of Stanfield FFA, Ore.

Nathan Hurty of Stanfield FFA, Ore.

3rd Place — California: Daryl Dorsey, Julianna Dailey, Christina Aguilar, and Jessica Prado, all of Atwater FFA

6th Place — Washington: Kandace Brunner, Cassidy Boyd, Molly Robertson, and Abigail Brown, all of Cashmere FFA

7th Place — Idaho: Annabelle Day, Kay Lee Day, Cody Jackson, and Alyssa Hansten, all of Jerome FFA

Top Placing Individuals

1st Place — Daryl Dorsey of Atwater FFA, Calif.

6th Place — Christina Aguilar of Atwater FFA, Calif.

7th Place — Kay Lee Day of Jerome FFA, Idaho

8th Place — Kandace Brunner of Cashmere FFA, Wash.

Gold Emblem Teams

Atwater FFA, Calif.

Jerome FFA, Idaho

Cashmere FFA, Wash.

Silver Emblem Teams

Scio FFA, Ore.

Gold Emblem Individuals

Christina Aguilar of Atwater FFA, Calif.

Julianna Dailey of Atwater FFA, Calif.

Daryl Dorsey of Atwater FFA, Calif.

Jessica Prado of Atwater FFA, Calif.

Annabelle Day of Jerome FFA, Idaho

Kay Lee Day of Jerome FFA, Idaho

Alyssa Hansten of Jerome FFA, Idaho

Cody Jackson of Jerome FFA, Idaho

Cassidy Boyd of Cashmere FFA, Wash.

Abigail Brown of Cashmere FFA, Wash.

Kandace Brunner of Cashmere FFA, Wash.

Molly Robertson of Cashmere FFA, Wash.

Silver Emblem Individuals

Madeline Thomas of Scio FFA, Ore.

Reyna Villanueva of Scio FFA, Ore.

Bronze Emblem Individuals

Cassandra Hyde of Scio FFA, Ore.

Ayden Zimmerman of Scio FFA, Ore.

10th Place — Idaho: Jonah Schaffeld, Amanda Hellums, Emma Winkle, and David Pecht, all of Middleton FFA

Gold Emblem Teams

Middleton FFA, Idaho

Silver Emblem Teams

Hanford FFA, Calif.

Sedro-Woolley FFA, Wash.

Bronze Emblem Teams

McMinnville FFA, Ore.

Gold Emblem Individuals

Cameron Standridge of Hanford FFA, Calif.

Amanda Hellums of Middleton FFA, Idaho

Jonah Schaffeld of Middleton FFA, Idaho

Emma Winkle of Middleton FFA, Idaho

Amy Joyce of Sedro-Woolley FFA, Wash.

Meghan McCloud of Sedro-Woolley FFA, Wash.

Silver Emblem Individuals

Drew Avila of Hanford FFA, Calif.

Kiera Searcy of Hanford FFA, Calif.

Delaney Woolwine of Hanford FFA, Calif.

David Pecht of Middleton FFA, Idaho

Taylor Ames of McMinnville FFA, Ore.

Luis Garibaldo of McMinnville FFA, Ore.

Grae Eason of Sedro-Woolley FFA, Wash.

1st Place — California: David Broyles, Christian Low, Shyann Mattes, Sienna Pillsbury, Teresa Spencer, and Michael Warnert, all of O’Neals-Minarets FFA

Gold Emblem Teams

O’Neals-Minarets FFA, Calif.

Tonasket FFA, Wash.

Silver Emblem Teams

Fruitland FFA, Idaho

Dayton FFA, Ore.

2nd Place — California: Megan Oliveira, Trever Edwards, Isabel Bishop, and Michayla Davidson, all of Galt FFA

Top Placing Individuals

4th Place — Isabel Bishop of Galt FFA, Calif.

8th Place — Michayla Davidson of Galt FFA, Calif.

Gold Emblem Teams

Galt FFA, Calif.

Silver Emblem Teams

North Clackamas FFA, Ore.

Kennewick FFA, Wash.

Bronze Emblem Teams

Malad FFA, Idaho

Gold Emblem Individuals

Isabel Bishop of Galt FFA, Calif.

Michayla Davidson of Galt FFA, Calif.

Trever Edwards of Galt FFA, Calif.

Megan Oliveira of Galt FFA, Calif.

Hannah Ranum of North Clackamas FFA, Ore.

Caitlyn Carter of Kennewick FFA, Wash.

Silver Emblem Individuals

Dallin Atkinson of Malad FFA, Idaho

Benjamin Waldron of Malad FFA, Idaho

Grace Garrett of North Clackamas FFA, Ore.

Jared Robeson of North Clackamas FFA, Ore.

Alejandra Vazquez of North Clackamas FFA, Ore.

Ashton Davis of Kennewick FFA, Wash.

Jack Vanhoorelbeke of Kennewick FFA, Wash.

Morgan White of Kennewick FFA, Wash.

Bronze Emblem Individuals

Dylan Brown of Malad FFA, Idaho

Matracea Semrad of Malad FFA, Idaho

Allisa Hastie of Sierra FFA, Calif.

Kourtney Lehman of Baker FFA, Ore.

Erin E. Smith of Yelm FFA, Wash.

Bronze Emblem Individuals

Amber Chambers of Teton County FFA, Idaho

3rd Place — California: Courtney Herring, Shauntel Statt, Kylie Raymond, and Emma Milks, all of Clovis FFA

4th Place — Idaho: Lauren Anderson, Hannah Krichbaum, Loretta Lacy, and Kristin Nesbitt, all of Meridian FFA

5th Place — Washington: Ryan England, Jadyn Denham, Alexis Kudsk, and Yuhsuan Ding, all of Ferndale FFA

Top Placing Individuals

2nd Place — Kristin Nesbitt of Meridian FFA, Idaho

6th Place — Emma Milks of Clovis FFA, Calif.

8th Place — Alexis Kudsk of Ferndale FFA, Wash.

10th Place — Ryan England of Ferndale FFA, Wash.

Gold Emblem Teams

Clovis FFA, Calif.

Meridian FFA, Idaho

Ferndale FFA, Wash.

Silver Emblem Teams

Hermiston FFA, Ore.

Gold Emblem Individuals

Courtney Herring of Clovis FFA, Calif.

Emma Milks of Clovis FFA, Calif.

Kylie Raymond of Clovis FFA, Calif.

Shauntel Statt of Clovis FFA, Calif.

Lauren Anderson of Meridian FFA, Idaho

Hannah Krichbaum of Meridian FFA, Idaho

Loretta Lacy of Meridian FFA, Idaho

Kristin Nesbitt of Meridian FFA, Idaho

Jadyn Denham of Ferndale FFA, Wash.

Yuhsuan Ding of Ferndale FFA, Wash.

Ryan England of Ferndale FFA, Wash.

Alexis Kudsk of Ferndale FFA, Wash.

Silver Emblem Individuals

Tanna Osmin of Hermiston FFA, Ore.

Hannah Walker of Hermiston FFA, Ore.

Bronze Emblem Individuals

Gissep Marin of Hermiston FFA, Ore.

Sevana Patrick of Hermiston FFA, Ore.

Exeter FFA receives innovation award Mon, 24 Oct 2016 12:32:53 -0500 INDIANAPOLIS — The Exeter FFA Chapter in California has been named the 2016 National Model of Innovation Chapter Award winner in community development at the 89th National FFA Convention & Expo in Indianapolis.

The nation’s top 10 three-star chapters in the community development division competed for the award. Exeter FFA was awarded a plaque in an onstage ceremony during the second general session.

Top chapters were also selected from the middle school, student and chapter development divisions.

Exeter FFA wanted to do its part to combat hunger in their community. During the “Hunger Heroes Food Hunt,” members were split into teams and assigned to a section of the city of Exeter. With adult drivers, the teams visited homes within their section to collect nonperishable food items for a local food bank. Many students and volunteer drivers participated in the event, collecting over 2,600 nonperishable food items during the one-hour activity. All of the food items were donated to the local food closet following the event. Because of the FFA chapter’s efforts, Exeter is one step closer to eliminating hunger in their community.

The Models of Innovation awards are sponsored by John Deere as a special project of the National FFA Foundation.

Omak FFA receives innovation award and national convention Mon, 24 Oct 2016 12:26:21 -0500 INDIANAPOLIS — The Omak FFA Chapter in Washington state has been named the 2016 National Model of Innovation Chapter Award winner in chapter development.

The chapter was honored the 89th National FFA Convention & Expo in Indianapolis.

The nation’s top 10 three-star chapters in the chapter development division competed at the convention and expo. Omak FFA was awarded a plaque in an onstage ceremony during the convention and expo’s second general session on Thursday.

Top chapters were also selected from the middle school, student and community development divisions.

Omak FFA developed a unique and fun social media campaign to promote FFA activities and membership. Each FFA officer selected a stuffed animal that would travel with them to FFA events. Officers then posted pictures and messages online with their mascot at the activity.

Through this campaign, the chapter exceeded their goal and membership increased over the previous year by 50 percent.

The Models of Innovation awards are sponsored by John Deere as a special project of the National FFA Foundation. I

Yelm FFA named model of excellence winner at national convention Mon, 24 Oct 2016 12:20:40 -0500 INDIANAPOLIS — The Yelm FFA Chapter in Washington has been named the 2016 National Model of Excellence Chapter Award winner at the 89th National FFA Convention & Expo in Indianapolis.

All chapters that receive national three-star ratings are eligible to compete for the national Model of Excellence award.

Yelm FFA received a plaque in an onstage ceremony during the convention and expo’s second general session on Thursday. Top chapters were also selected from the middle school, student, chapter and community development divisions.

Yelm FFA was given a week by the Yelm High School administration to develop an event to distribute spirit materials for a “Pink Out” breast cancer awareness football game. Through the chapter’s efforts, 368 Yelm High School students received pink face paint, hair dye or spirit materials and together created a “sea of pink” to raise breast cancer awareness among students, parents and community members.

A s a result of the event, the chapter recruited six new FFA members who were inspired by the cause. This chapter also conducts other activities throughout the year, such as a leadership lock in, the McKenna Elementary Science Fair and a Hop for Hunger.

The Model of Excellence award is sponsored by John Deere as a special project of the National FFA Foundation.

Valley Wide Co-op donates $3,800 to West Side FFA Tue, 18 Oct 2016 18:16:43 -0500 DAYTON, Idaho — Valley Wide Cooperative and Valley Agronomics LLC donated $3,800 to the West Side School District, which will use the funds to build a local greenhouse.

The West Side FFA students will be working with their advisers to put the greenhouse together. The greenhouse will serve as not only a place the students can grow and sell flowers and plant starts, but will be a classroom setting for two new programs: herbology and soil science.

The students will have hands-on experience with both classes that will be taught by the ag teachers.

There are currently 90 students enrolled in the program and 85 of those students are enrolled in the FFA program.

“With Valley Wide’s contribution the students at West Side will be able to utilize the greenhouse to facilitate hands on learning in plant and soil science, as well as provide fundraising opportunities” stated Mitch Bowles, FFA adviser and ag instructor for the Dayton High School.

“Valley Wide Cooperative has a direct impact on the communities that we serve. We are excited to be able to provide funds to the West Side School District to help the youth further their ag education,” said Jason Pollard, director of marketing for Valley Wide Cooperative.

Since 1920 Valley Wide Cooperative has been helping farmers and ranchers build their homes and businesses through dedication and expertise. Valley Wide is involved in every community we are a part of, and we are helping to cultivate and strengthen the current and next generation of farmers.

For more information, please visit

FFA honors board member for going ‘extra mile’ Mon, 17 Oct 2016 12:49:31 -0500 CRAIG REED UMPQUA, Ore. — Elin Miller was a seven-year member of FFA as a young adult. She said those FFA experiences were strong influences on her future, providing her the skills that led to a successful business career with major corporations and government agencies.

For the past 20 years, Miller has been giving back to that program that helped set her future.

The National FFA Organization will recognize Miller’s volunteer efforts by presenting her with the VIP Citation at the 89th National FFA Convention and Expo in Indianapolis, Ind. The honor will be awarded to Miller Friday. It recognizes “individuals who have provided exceptional support of school-based agricultural education and FFA.”

Miller was a four-year member of FFA at Westwood High School in Mesa, Ariz., and then a three-year member while attending the University of Arizona in Tucson.

“FFA changed my life personally,” said Miller, who with her husband, Bill, owns and works a hazelnut orchard in the Umpqua area. “I would not have had the career opportunities if not for the leadership skills and the technical aspects of agriculture that FFA taught me.

“I learned as much in high school through FFA competing in contests as I did in advance classes at the university,” she added.

Miller’s career included working for Shell Oil in its agriculture division, for Dow Chemical in its public affairs global division and for Dow AgroSciences. She was also executive director of Western Agricultural Chemicals Association and was a presidential appointee to the Environmental Protection Agency for Region 10, which includes Oregon, Idaho, Washington and Alaska.

She serves on several company boards, both locally and nationally.

Her past 20 years with FFA have included being a member of the National FFA Foundation board for the last seven years. She chaired the board for one year.

Miller helped establish the Individual Giving Council that is part of the national foundation.

“That council has put more emphasis on reaching back to FFA alumni and to other supporters and sponsors for contributions,” Miller explained. “...Most of the contributions to FFA had come from corporations, small and large, like 85 percent. Now we’re starting to move in the direction of seeking contributions from individuals.”

At the end of this year, Miller will be stepping down from the national board.

“I’m very surprised,” she said of being recognized with the VIP Citation honor. “It’s a bit of a capstone and a culmination of having reconnected with FFA over the last 20 years. I’ve put a lot of effort back into the organization.”

Miller, however, plans to continue to support FFA by helping the Oregon FFA Foundation with its fundraising.

The National FFA Organization has about 630,000 members.

A news release from the national office credited Miller with going “the extra mile” for FFA.

“Outstanding dedicated people like you deserve most of the credit for changing the lives of these young people,” Steve Brown, National FFA adviser and board chairman, wrote in a statement to Miller. “It is an honor to publicly recognize your outstanding support of our youth and agricultural education.”

Kuna FFA auction raises over $45,000 Wed, 5 Oct 2016 16:33:47 -0500 Savannah StroebelKuna FFA Reporter On Sept. 26 the Kuna, Idaho, FFA hosted their annual Alumni Scholarship Auction.

Local members, businesses, family and friends throughout the valley gathered together to support the Kuna FFA Chapter.

The auction proceeds go toward college scholarships, Washington Leadership Conference scholarships, Greenhand FFA scholarships, leadership conference travel, career development event travel, national FFA convention travel and classroom technology. This year’s Alumni Scholarship Auction brought in over $45,000.

The evening started off with a pork dinner served to all the guests. The silent auction began at 6 p.m. where people were able to purchase items donated by local businesses and families. They were also able to purchase an FFA member’s labor for three hours as a thank you for helping support the chapter.

The chapter also held an online auction that lasted until Thursday, Sept. 29.

At 7 p.m. the live auction began. Senior FFA members presented items such as a cattle chute built by the students, a trailer built by the students, a project heifer and a gun safe.

There is a specific part of the live auction called Raise The Paddle in which the proceeds raised go only towards sending students to the Washington Leadership Conference next summer. This year, Raise the Paddle brought in $17,450 donated by 76 people that will go directly toward WLC scholarship money for the students.

The Alumni Scholarship Auction proceeds promote leadership and personal development of Kuna FFA members. The auction is a great way to support the students and help them become the future leaders of the community.

The Kuna FFA Chapter is overwhelmingly grateful for all the support they receive throughout the year, especially at their auction. They would like to thank all those who donated items, 2016 auction buyers, and everyone who came out to support and help put the auction on.

Fair contest keeps youngsters involved in local beef industry Mon, 26 Sep 2016 12:13:12 -0500 Tim Hearden RED BLUFF, Calif. — FFA member Kegan Richards got a chance last weekend to show his skills at breeding and raising market-ready steers.

Richards took first in the Tehama District Fair’s annual Producers’ Market Beef contest sponsored by the Tehama County Cattlemen’s Association, which judges calves and steers purchased from producers within the county.

Richards is himself a producer, having bought two cows and bred and raised his own fair entries for the past several years. He also won the local producers’ contest two years ago.

“I think it’s awesome because it gives kids with steers from Tehama County a chance to show what they did and it shows that Tehama County can produce really good steers,” said Richards, 18, who won a $250 first prize.

Richards was one of about a dozen competitors in the contest. Among the other youngsters, Amy Stroing of Red Bluff was second and won $150, Melissa Stroing of Red Bluff took third and won $50, Hannah Pritchard of Corning placed fourth, and Charleigh Merkley was fifth.

The entrants also had a chance to win a belt buckle, as judges interviewed them and considered the overall quality of their projects and their breeding programs.

In all, 322 youngsters entered animals at the 96th annual Tehama fair in Red Bluff, up slightly from last year, livestock coordinator Carrie Perea said. The cattlemen also gave money to students whose steers finished near the bottom in prices in the auction.

The group has been sponsoring the local producer contest for about a decade as a way to keep youngsters involved in the industry, said cattle producer Matt Pritchard, an agriculture teacher and FFA leader at Red Bluff High School.

“The youth is where we have to start,” Pritchard said. “If we don’t have the youth coming up ... we’re in big trouble.”

Chelan FFA Horse Evaluation CDE team state champions Tue, 20 Sep 2016 11:30:52 -0500 Friday, Sept. 16, was a good day to be a Chelan FFA member.

Thirty-four members loaded up in the gray light just before dawn and headed for Othello, Wash., and the Adams County Fair. Their plan was to compete in the judging Career Development Events and to represent their chapter well.

And they did performing well in both the Livestock and Dairy Evaluation CDEs.

But when all the arena dust from the placing classes had settled, all the oral reasons taken, identification tests scored, and team scenario presentations made, the Chelan FFA Horse Evaluation CDE team were state champions and had punched their ticket to the National Horse CDE in Indianapolis, Ind., next month.

The victory marked the fourth time the Chelan FFA has attended the big dance in horse evaluation in the last 12 years.

Katie Gleasman placed second individually and was joined on the team by Ashley Oswald, Stephanie Olivera, Allie Barnes, and Dianna Sanchez.

Team members now prepare to compete at the National FFA Horse CDE, which involves judging four halter classes from Quarter Horse, Paint, Appaloosa, Confirmation Hunters, Arabian, American Saddlebred and Morgan Horses.

They then will judge four performance classes from Western Horsemanship, Western Pleasure, Western Riding, Reining, Trail, English Pleasure (Saddle Seat), Hunter under saddle, Hunt Seat Equitation and Hunter Hack.

Contestants will then give four sets of oral reasons, two on Halter and two on Performance classes. Students will also have to identify 10 colors/breeds/markings and 10 tack or equipment items.

Then as a team they will complete four practicums that may include but are not limited to hay/feed selection, shoeing equipment for a given job, tacking up a horse, taking vital signs, administering injections or deworming.

Team activity also includes a scenario discussion then presentation concerning nutrition, management, anatomy, marketing or animal welfare.

Students will travel the week of Oct. 16-23.

Meridian FFA showcases SAEs at Western Idaho Fair Tue, 20 Sep 2016 12:45:23 -0500 Loretta LacyMeridian FFA Reporter The Western Idaho Fair in Boise gives the Meridian FFA chapter a chance to show and sell the livestock Supervised Agricultural Experiences — SAEs — they’ve been working with for the past several months.

Showing isn’t the only option at the fair; it also holds many other agricultural competitions such as tractor driving, livestock judging and dairy judging.

This fair is Ada County’s designated fair. Our chapter was also fortunate to be invited to show at the Canyon County Fair earlier in the summer.

Unlike Canyon County Fair, horses are added into the mix of large animals eligible to show through the Meridian FFA Chapter. The Western Idaho Fair started on Aug. 19 and ended on Aug. 28. While the fair lasts 11 days, the 4-H/FFA Livestock and Horse Show took place from Aug. 18 until Aug. 23. The Meridian FFA Chapter was represented by 42 showmen this year.

The following Meridian members showed horses:

•Ashlyn Schiers: Grand Champion English FFA Hi Point, Grand Champion Gymkhana FFA Hi Point, Grand Champion Ranch Horse FFA, Grand Quarter Horse Breed Award, Reserve Champion FFA Horse Showman, and Reserve Western FFA Hi Point.

• Loretta Lacy: Grand Champion Buckskin Breed Award and Reserve Gymkhana FFA Hi Point.

• Lauren Barker: Reserve English FFA Hi Point and Reserve Champion Ranch Horse FFA.

• Rachel Mansfield: Reserve Arabian Breed Award.

• Alexa Phillips.

• Amy Saleen.

• Mallie Miller.

The following members showed sheep:

• Zach Ball: Reserve Champion Lamb.

• Cody Ball: Reserve FFA Sheep Showman.

• Cameron King: FFA Run-off Showman.

• Dani Turnbough: FFA Run-off Showman.

• Dalton Turnbough: FFA Run-off Showman.

• Trinity Martin.

• Lauren Jackson.

• Kaitlin Muniz.

• Mollie Hiscox.

• Anna Jackson.

• Shelby Peugh.

• Ashton Shaul.

• Caydan Stirm.

• Kaitlin Steppe.

• Brock Shurtz.

• Tyson Hernandez.

• Blake Hilderbrand.

The following members showed swine:

• Ashlee Bowen: 3rd in FFA Swine Showmanship.

• Zach Kerby.

• Ashley Kerby.

• Maddie Bennett.

• Ryan Bennett.

Kate Johnson placed second in her Beef Market class.

The following members showed pygmy goats:

• Emily Pile: Grand Champion FFA Showman.

• Kiara Wetzel: Grand Champion Wether and Reserve Champion FFA Showman.

The following members showed dairy cattle:

• Zach Phillips: Grand Champion FFA Dairy Showman, Grand Champion Holstein & Sr. Cow.

• Siera Horton: Reserve Champion FFA Dairy Showman.

• Jordyn Bettencourt: 3rd in FFA Showmanship and Reserve Champion Jr. Cow.

• Mollie Hiscox.

• Kayla Schubert.

• Cameron King.

• Maddie Bennett.

• Ashton Shaul.

Makayla Buck showed meat goats.

Maddie Bennett — Grand Champion FFA Showman and Grand Champion Senior Nubian — and Ellie Higgins — Reserve Champion FFA Showman and Grand Champion Jr. Nubian — showed dairy goats.

Mikey Eilers won 1st place and Blake Hilderbrand was 2nd in tractor driving.

The following Meridian FFA members all made it to Large Animal Round Robin by being either grand or reserve champion showman in their animal areas through FFA: Zach Ball, Ellie Higgins, Ashlyn Schiers, Zach Phillips, Siera Horton, and Maddie Bennett.

Western Idaho Fair also features a 4-H/FFA Livestock and Dairy Judging Contest using showman’s animals. From Meridian FFA, Cameron King was 3rd in Livestock and Zach Phillips was 4th. For the Dairy portion of the contest, Siera Horton was 2nd and Jordyn Bettencourt was 3rd.

Members of our chapter also spend time preparing and running the Meridian FFA concessions fair booth. At this booth we sell drinks, sno-cones and some small food items during the entire week of the fair. This booth is a large fundraiser for our chapter. The money made here goes to helping members pay for attendance at state and national events.

It takes a large number of dedicated members to run this successfully. Thank you to all who donated their time to volunteer at the booth, as well as those fair competitors and spectators who supported our fundraising goals by making purchases.

The Meridian FFA Chapter would like to thank the 4-H/FFA Junior Livestock Co-Superintendents Dana Kolstad and Jack Blattner.

We also owe a huge thank you to all of the department supervisors of Meridian FFA showmen at this fair: Shane Stevenson and Joe Blackstock (Beef), Rhiannon Blum, Shawn Dygert and Michelle Ball (Dairy Cattle), Kim Moore and Ken Feaster-Eytchison (Dairy/Pack Goats), Lorraine Wikoff and Renee Peugh (Meat Goats), Paulette Henderson, Barb Recla, Brett Spencer and Liz Russell (Horse), Sandy Stevenson and Jessica Higher (Sheep), Jerry Berheim, Travis Edwards, Kelsey Bly (Swine) Dan Cecil (Pygmy Goat), Alan Heikkila (Tractor Driving), Brain Twait, Trish Stokes and Steve Wilder (Livestock Judging Contest), Leroy and Quyann Kerby (Large Animal Round Robin), as well as the Expo Idaho Board of Directors: Dave Moore, Steve Russell, Gary Johnson, Bob Batista, Bobbie Nida, Lonna Breshears, Hans Brujin and Kasie Morrison for continuing to make Western Idaho Fair a success.

Showmen who sold animals at the 4-H/FFA Market Sale this year would like to publicly thank Design Flooring, The Berheims, Les Schwab, and Western Heating and Air for being large buyers of our members’ animals at auction this year.

These buyers’ dollars often fund a member’s purchase of their next project animal, which allows that student to continue to develop their premier leadership, personal growth, and career success through FFA.

Chelan FFA has a good showing at county fair Tue, 20 Sep 2016 11:50:11 -0500 The Chelan FFA continued their winning ways, when they packed up and headed out for Cashmere, Wash., and the 2016 Edition of the Chelan County Fair.

Members brought with them quarter horses, market hogs, market lambs, meat goats, breeding goats and still life exhibits.

Chelan members picked up right where they left off in Waterville at the NCW District Fair.

Aislinn Davis got things going with the Reserve Champion Meat Goat and Dane Schwartz made it two in row with the Reserve Champion Market Hog.

Dianna Sanchez added the Reserve Champion Rosette for Breeding Goats.

Carlos Vargas added to the ribbon total with a Reserve Champion in Meat Goat Rate of Gain.

Zoee Stamps kept things rolling right along in the horse barn earning Grand Champion Rosettes in Horse Fitting and Showing, Halter, Western Equitation, Trail, and Western Pleasure.

In the still life barn things continued to go in Chelan’s favor with Angel Blanco who had the Grand Champion Vegetable and Dianna Sanchez was the Reserve Champion.

Mario Bravo had both the Grand and Reserve Champion Fruit exhibits.

Dianna Sanchez had the Grand Champion Eggs and Grand Champion Craft Project.

Angel Blanco had the Grand Champion Photography and Sarah Goyne was Reserve Champion.

Yesina Saucedo had the Grand Champion Ag Mech Utility Skill exhibit and Wyatt Habich was Reserve Champion.

Kenny Reeves had both the Grand and Reserve Champion Educational Display-Wildlife Exhibit.

Ebelia Guitierrez and Tyler Higgins had the Grand and Reserve Champion Agronomy plant mount exhibit.

Mario Bravo was the Overall Horticulture Grand Champion aned Angel Blanco was reserve.

On Friday Fitting and Showing Day in the barns, Chelan did well again.

Jessie Oules was the Reserve Champion Sheep Showman, 7 of the 9 FFA members in the Swine Final Drive were Chelan FFA Hog Showman with Dane Schwartz winning Grand and Kenny Reeves earning Reserve.

Chelan was well represented in the Meat Goat Final Drive with 7 of 8 coming from Chelan with Michael Tutino winning Grand and Ashley Oswald winning Reserve. Six of the 9 FFA members in the Round Robin were Chelan FFA members and Jessie Oules came out the Reserve all around showman for the entire fair.

In Career Development Events members placed 1st in Poultry Judging with Stephanie Olivera 1st and Carlos Vargas and Ashley Oswald 9th and 10th individually.

Chelan Placed 2nd in Tractors with Michael Tutino 2nd, Jake Horlebien 5th, and Logan Oules 9th.

A second place finish was also won in Livestock with Matt Fitzpatrick 3rd, Ashley Oswald 4th, Stephanie Olivera 5th, and Dane Schwartz 5th.

Chelan placed 4th in Horse Judging with Allie Barnes 10th. And rounded things out with a 4th Place finish in Produce Judging and earning a 2nd place banner in the Sweepstakes.

All in all an outstanding fair season the Chelan FFA. They will compete in the State Horse CDE on Friday, Sept. 16, and then State Tractors and State Potato Grading on Nov. 16 and Apple Judging starts in mid-November as well with State Apples finishing up the first of December.

Washington FFA Foundation hires full-time director Thu, 15 Sep 2016 17:24:52 -0500 Matw Weaver Marissa Dunn is the new executive director of the Washington State FFA Foundation, a position that has been expanded to become full-time.

“FFA makes such a positive difference in the lives of its members regarding their personal leadership development and their future career success,” said Dunn. “One of our main objectives is to connect agriculture businesses and organizations with individuals in Washington FFA to create great opportunities.”

The foundation also places a priority on supporting agricultural teachers, Dunn said.

Dunn lives on a farm in Central Washington with her husband and daughter, raising apples, pears, hay and cattle. She grew up in Spokane County, showing sheep and competing at the state convention all four years of high school.

She was a state FFA officer and a national officer candidate. After high school, she worked a legislative session in Olympia for the Washington State Grange.

“The FFA is the organization that personally gave me such remarkable opportunities to learn, travel and develop leadership skills,” she said. “I want this organization to be very successful, and I want FFA to continue to make a difference in the lives of students across the state — just like it did for me.”

Dunn replaces Stewart Padelford, who held the position on a part-time basis for 6 1/2 years.

The foundation first began in the 1970s, but had been inactive for years, Padelford said.

Padelford said he wanted to get the foundation to the point that the position could be full-time.

“We were trying to re-energize it, and I think we’ve accomplished that,” he said.

Padelford’s last day was July 30, but he has been helping with the transition.

“I think she has all the necessary tools and skills to make the foundation grow,” he said.

Padelford is proudest of emphasizing career awareness for FFA members, building connections between FFA and the industry and developing a three-day program in the summer that gives students the opportunity to meet with ag leaders.

Dunn said financial support and volunteers are the foundation’s biggest needs for the future. Corporate and individual investments help continue leadership programs, state career development events and to support members and state officers travel to various events, including nationals, and purchase FFA jackets for members who can’t afford them.

“If anyone has the time and passion to help his or her local chapter, it makes a tremendous difference,” she said. “Anyone who can be available to help with career development events, fairs, scholarship applications, the state convention, leadership trainings, travel and/or additional resources, we’d certainly love to connect with them.”


Contact Dunn at

Five Washington FFA chapters are national award finalists Tue, 13 Sep 2016 14:00:27 -0500 Matw Weaver Five Washington State FFA programs are finalists for national FFA awards, and a state adviser says it’s a sign of creativity and innovation from student members.

The Elma and Goldendale FFA chapters are national finalists for the National FFA Organization’s 2016 Model of Innovation awards for student development for logging rodeo and non-traditional agriculture career programs, respectively.

The Omak chapter is a finalist for the national Model of Innovation award for chapter development for its officer mascot’s social media campaign.

The Ephrata chapter is a finalist for the national Model of Innovation community development award for highway crop signs with the Quincy Rotary.

The Yelm chapter is a finalist for the Model of Excellence award.

“I think it’s really significant when you look at the size and scope of our national organization,” said Rebecca Wallace, Washington FFA adviser and agricultural education program supervisor in the Washington State Office of the Superintendent of Public Instruction. “Having one of the top 10 chapters in the nation as an overall program means they’re one of the best. That’s huge.”

Every chapter in good standing in the nation is eligible for such recognition, Wallace said, noting there are more than 7,000 chapters.

The national organization is looking for programs that are “new, different, exciting – you really have to be quite innovative,” Wallace said.

Wallace believes it’s the first time Washington has had this much recognition in one year.

“It speaks to the good works being done in the communities across the state, the strong leadership and dedication from our agricultural educators and the creativity and innovation that our students have when they’re putting together their program activities,” she said.

Students plan the activities, Wallace said.

“Statistically, to have five finalists out of one state across the nation being recognized, I think that speaks volumes,” Wallace said.

The programs also benefit from the participation of local communities, Wallace said.

“Most certainly, the programs that have the most success means they’re really drilled in to their local industry partners,” she said.

Chelan FFA members have big year at district fair Wed, 31 Aug 2016 17:43:39 -0500 Twenty-five Chelan FFA members loaded up their animals and headed up to Waterville for the NCW District Fair Aug. 24-28.

They picked up right where they left off last spring in terms of successful competition.

On Thursday all the still life is judged and the market animals are judged on type.

In the Sheep Barn, Jessie Oules kept her streak of four straight years in a row with the Grand Champion Market Lamb at the NCW Fair. Stephanie Olivera and Ella Tschetter also received Blue ribbons for their lambs.

In the Goat Barn, Michael Tutino had the Grand Champion Meat Goat. Aislinn Davis, Carlos Vargas, Henry Armstrong, Santiago Jimenez, Dianna Sanchez, Dylan Bufunda and Ashley Oswald all received blue ribbons for their meat goats. Dianna Sanchez also exhibited the Grand Champion 3-year-old Boer Doe.

In the Swine Barn, Dane Schwartz brought both the Grand and Reserve Champion Market Hogs to fair the first time that this has been done in recent memory. Katie Gleasman, Matt Fitzpatrick, Kenny Reeves, Owen Oules, Wyatt Dietrich, Dylan Bufunda, Allie Barnes, Sam Austin, Devin Holden, Dawson Roberts, Angel Blanco, and Emily Mudd all received blue ribbons and Darby Dietrich a red. Macaela LaPorte had the third place market steer in the Beef Barn.

Zoee Stamps had a tremendous couple days in the Horse barn, earning Grand Champion Rosettes for Horse Fitting and Showing, Western Pleasure, Halter Horse, and Reserve Grand Champion in Western Equitation.

On Friday Jessie Oules was the Sheep Fitting and Showing Champion and ended up the Reserve Champion Overall Showman in the round robin.

In the Still Life Barn, Michael Tutino was the Reserve Grand Champion Ag Mechanics Large Project. Wyatt Habich was the Grand Champion Ag Mechanics Utility Skills and Santiago Jimenez won the Reserve Rosette. Tyler Higgins was the Grand Champion Agronomy Plant Mount and Ebelia Gutierrez was Reserve Champion. Dianna Sanchez had the Grand Champion Vegetable for her Red Cabbage entry and Angel Blanco was Reserve with his Red Chili Peppers. Dianna also had the Grand Champion Fruit with her plate of Gala Apples and Stephanie Olivera won Reserve for her plate of Honeycrisp.

Angel Blanco was the Overall Horticulture Champion and Dianna Sanchez was the Overall Horticulture Reserve Champion. Stephanie Olivera had the Grand Champion FFA Photography exhibit and Dianna Sanchez was Reserve Champion.

In Career Development Events, the Chelan Chapter brought home four banners in four events. They earned a first place finish in Produce Judging with Stephanie Olivera finishing third, Thomas Armstrong fourth, and Matt Fitzpatrick eighth individually. They brought home a second place Banner in Livestock with Dawson Roberts, Dane Schwartz, and Owen Oules placing third, fourth, and fifth, respectively.

Micheal Tutino was the first place individual in the tractor driving CDE and earned the third place banner. And the Horse CDE team also earned a third place banner with Stephanie Olivera seventh, Allie Barnes eighth, and Katie Gleasman 10th individually.

Members will rest for a week, and then load up and head out to the Chelan County Fair Sept. 7-11 in Cashmere.

Meridian FFA ‘Learns to Do, Does to Learn and Earns to Live’ at Canyon County Fair Fri, 26 Aug 2016 14:51:19 -0500 Loretta LacyMeridian FFA Reporter Starting on July 26, the Canyon County Fair was held at the Caldwell, Idaho, fairgrounds.

Canyon County Fair lasted for six days and ended on July 31. This fair gives Meridian FFA members the chance to show and sell the livestock they’ve been raising and working with as their Supervised Agricultural Experiences (SAEs) for the past year. We had 33 members show livestock at this fair this year.

The following members showed swine:

• Ashlee Bowen

• Zack Davis (3rd in FFA Swine Showmanship)

The following members showed dairy heifers:

• Kristin Nesbitt (Grand Champion FFA Dairy Showman and Grand Champion FFA Round Robin)

• Sierra Horton (Reserve Champion FFA Dairy Showman and Reserve Grand Champion Jr. Jersey Heifer)

• Mollie Hiscox

• Cameron King

• Ashton Shaul

• Jordyn Bettencourt

• Kayla Shubert

The following members showed dairy goats:

• Maddie Bennett (Grand Champion FFA Goat Showman)

• Kaitlyn Steppe

The following members showed meat goats:

• Maddie Bennett (4th in FFA Goat Showmanship)

• Ryan Bennett

Elise Campbell placed first in her beef cattle feeder class.

The following members showed market lambs:

• Hannah Smith (Reserve Champion FFA Sheep Showman; Reserve Champion Natural Lamb)

• Cody Ball (3rd in FFA Sheep Showmanship)

• Kaitlyn Steppe (4th in FFA Sheep Showmanship)

• Loretta Lacy (5th in FFA Sheep Showmanship)

• Mollie Hiscox

• William Stokes

• Kaitlyn Muniz

• Karlyn Roberts

• Kali Simitzes

• Summer Miller

• Mallie Miller

• Joe Wieting

• Ashton Shaul

• Cameron King

• Dani Turnbough

• Zach Ball

• Chloe Varley

• Katelyn Putizer

• Caydan Stirm

• Blake Hildebrand

• Tyson Hernandez

• Brock Shurtz

The following members also showed breeding lambs:

• Hannah Smith

• Joe Wieting

• Kaitlyn Steppe

The Meridian FFA Chapter would like to thank Canyon County Exhibits Supervisor Diana Sinner, and Canyon County Fair Director Rosalie Cope for the time and hard work they put in to make this year’s fair a success.

Meridian FFA would also like to thank the following major buyers of Meridian FFA market animals at the Canyon County 4-H/FFA Market Sale: Les Schwab, Albertsons, Forage Genetics, Dan Sample, D&B Supply, Custom Butcher, and Sunny and Justin Christensen Farms.

Anyone who supports an FFA member’s SAE is helping that individual gain invaluable skills in time management, record keeping and financial independence. Meridian FFA thanks all the parents, advisors and buyers who helped these 33 members gain experience in agricultural entrepreneurship.

Six Meridian FFA members ‘scramble’ to win $1,000 at Snake River Stampede Fri, 12 Aug 2016 17:40:43 -0500 Loretta LacyMeridian FFA Chapter Reporter The Snake River Stampede Calf Scramble was held during the first and last night of the Snake River Stampede Rodeo.

During both of those nights, 20 high school students were let into the arena with 10 calves. The goal for these students was to catch and put a halter on a calf. If they catch a calf, they are each awarded $1,000 to purchase a 2016 beef heifer calf.

They must then raise the heifer for a year and show it at the Snake River Calf Scramble Beef Show the following summer. After the show, they then have the option to breed the heifer or sell it.

Six Meridian FFA members participated in the Calf Scramble during the Tuesday and Saturday performances that caught calves. Those members were Zack Davis, Cameron King, Mollie Hiscox, Joe Wieting, Siera Horton and Kayla Shubert.

Meridian FFA members Trace Beaucannon and Jordan Bettencourt participated in the Calf Scramble but did not catch calves.

Large livestock animals are expensive to purchase; the Calf Scramble gives students the opportunity to experience raising and showing a beef heifer without a high start-up expense.

Without this program, many of the competing students would struggle to cover the initial cost of buying such an animal.

Meridian FFA would like to thank the Snake River Stampede Calf Scramble Committee for putting on the event, sponsoring the cash awards and for inviting our members to compete.

14 Meridian FFA members attend Washington Leadership Conference Thu, 21 Jul 2016 14:52:56 -0500 Loretta LacyMeridian FFA Reporter Fourteen Meridian FFA members got the chance to attend the Washington Leadership Conference from June 27 until July 3.

They were Loretta Lacy, Mollie Hiscox, Lauren Barker, Kyle Schmit, Cameron King, Ashton Shaul, Delaney Vatcher, Kaitlin Muniz, Rachel Mansfield, Ellie Higgins, Kiara Wetzel, Lauren Jackson, and Kate Johnson and were accompanied by two advisors, Miss Kya Vines and Mrs. Trish Stokes.

The Washington Leadership Conference is a conference that FFA members from all 50 states can attend. It is held in Washington, D.C. This conference lasts a week, and eight weeks are offered each summer. All attendees stayed in the Omni Shoreham Hotel, where the conference sessions were held this year.

During our week of WLC, 348 FFA members from around the nation attended the conference. Members can only attend this conference once. Most attendees are going into their junior or senior year in high school.

Within the 348 members, we were split into Community Groups consisting of an average of 26 members. WLC puts an emphasis on leadership and serving your community. This conference focused on having each member create a “Living to Serve Plan” to help our community at home. We spent most of our community group meetings creating, organizing and planning.

In our large group meeting, consisting of all the attendees, we did lots of fun, but thought-provoking activities. We talked a lot about hunger in our communities and what we can do to help. On the last day of the conference, we made 6,200 macaroni-and-cheese bags for food shelters around the D.C. area through an organization called Meals for Hope.

Half of the conference consisted of sessions. For the other half, we spent it touring D.C. WLC attendees were privileged to visit the following:

• Holocaust Museum.

• Jefferson Memorial.

• JFK Memorial.

• Korean War Memorial.

• Lincoln Memorial.

• Martin Luther King Jr. Memorial.

• National Archives, where we saw the Constitution and the Declaration of Independence.

• National Zoo.

• Natural History Museum.

• Washington Monument.

• White House.

• World War II Memorial.

• U.S. Capitol, where we visited Senator James Risch’s office.

Members from our chapter that attended this trip owe a great deal of gratitude to the Meridian FFA Alumni, Ada County Farm Bureau, Meridian Dairy Board, Meridian FFA Chapter and Dave and Angie Daniels for their financial donations to reduce the cost of our trip..

With their help, the price of the trip per student was lowered from $1,460 to $650. All 14 of us are extremely thankful to have attended this great program at less than half the original cost.

Farm Day introduces Pendleton eighth-graders to FFA Tue, 31 May 2016 10:50:14 -0500 George PlavenEO Media Group There’s more to FFA than just showing animals. The organization features a broad and diverse range of activities, from diesel mechanics to gardening to cooking.

Members of the Pendleton FFA Chapter presented just a few of the possibilities May 27 to eighth-graders from Sunridge Middle School, giving them an up close and personal look at all FFA has to offer. Students cycled through each of five stations at the chapter’s lamb lab, where they had the chance to plant pumpkins, pet a horse, watch a welding demonstration and even try their hand at flying an agriculture drone.

Jake Szumski, a junior at Pendleton High School and FFA chapter president, said the goal was not only to show what opportunities are available, but how FFA can help students develop new skills for college and careers.

“It really is a learning opportunity for the rest of your life,” Szumski said. “There’s a lot of career development where you can experience things you wouldn’t otherwise do.”

The Pendleton FFA Chapter has approximately 50 active and 80 non-active members, said Hallie Porter, sophomore and chapter secretary.

“To be in FFA, you don’t have to show animals. There’s so many options,” Porter said. “You can really do any competition, and still feel welcome in FFA.”

More than 20 chapter members participated at the State FFA Convention in Corvallis, and Seely Daniels, PHS agriculture teacher and FFA advisor, said she hopes to take their officers to the National Convention and Expo next October in Indianapolis.

Daniels said they welcomed about 200 eighth-graders on Friday.

“The kids just loved it,” she said. “They are so much fun to work with.”

Meridian FFA holds 76th annual banquet Mon, 16 May 2016 12:39:49 -0500 Loretta LacyMeridian FFA Reporter The Meridian, Idaho, FFA chapter banquet is held every spring to award our members for all the hard work they did in the past year.

All members and family are invited to join us for a night of food, installing new officers and giving awards and scholarships.

This banquet is an annual tradition for our chapter. This year, the banquet was held on May 2 at the West Ada District Service Center. In the past we have held the banquet at Meridian High School, but due to the high attendance in the past and the construction at the school this year, we moved to a larger location.

Freshmen that have worked hard in class, in their SAE (Supervised Agricultural Experience) and in FFA this year were awarded the Star Greenhand. Those students were: Cassidey Plum, Sydney Plum, Kayla Shubert, and Anna Jackson.

Sophomores that have also worked hard in those same aspects were awarded the Outstanding 2nd Year Member award. The students that received this award were: Ashton Shaul, Ellie Higgins, Kaitlin Johnson, and Mollie Hiscox.

Juniors that have consistently worked hard in the classroom, in their SAE and were active members of the chapter were awarded the Outstanding 3rd Year Member. Those juniors were: Loretta Lacy, Kyle Schmit, Mallie Miller, Alexa Phillips, and Ashlyn Schiers.

Many adults have been instrumental to the success of our chapter in the last several years. To thank them for their hard work, we awarded them with an Honorary Chapter Degree. Those incredible adults were: Mr. Mark Stokes, Mr. Paul Adams, Mr. Quentin and Mrs. Julie Nesbitt, Ms. Dena Pengilly, Mr. Frank Thomason, Ms. Shauna Murray, Ms. Melissa Knueven, and Miss Michelle Ball.

Mark Stokes was an active member in the Meridian FFA Chapter and is now the current Meridian FFA Alumni President. Paul Adams has been the lead auctioneer at the Meridian FFA Alumni Chapter’s Scholarship Auction for the past four years. Paul has helped double the income of our auction.

Quentin and Julie Nesbitt are the parents of this year’s chapter president, Kristin. Quentin and Julie have both donated much time and energy to helping out our alumni chapter and FFA Scholarship Auction.

Dena Pengilly has been instrumental with the West Ada Professional Technical programs. She has spent many hours serving our school district and helping out many students.

Frank Thomason produces a 20-page newspaper by himself. He always makes sure to include the new articles and photos of the Meridian Chapter members and really helps the community stay in touch with our chapter.

Shauna Murray has been a school counselor for many years and has helped many of our chapter members. Shauna was also named this year’s district Counselor of the Year.

Melissa Knueven is an administrator at Rocky Mountain High School. She is a regular attendee of the chapter’s events and has been continually supportive of the FFA members at her school.

Michelle Ball is a former member of Kuna FFA and served as a previous Idaho State Officer. She has just finished her first year as an agriculture teacher and Meridian FFA Advisor.

Proficiency awards are given to members with exceptional SAE projects. This year the chapter recognized the following members for their work in their SAEs:

Small Animal: Kenzie Babcock, Caitlin Martin, Ellie Higgins and Alexa Phillips

Beef: Ashton Shaul

Dairy: Mallie Miller

Horse: Ashlyn Schiers, Allison Iverson, and Loretta Lacy

Diversified Livestock: Maddie Bennett

Many senior scholarships were also awarded this evening:

The Rick Dirksen, John & Marty Mundt Scholarship ($1,000 renewable) was awarded to Andrew Heikkila.

The Fred Beckman Good Citizen Award ($500) was given to Mackenzie Brown.

The Ada County Farm Bureau Scholarship ($1,000 renewable) was awarded to Kristin Nesbitt.

The Charlie Stevens Scholarship was also awarded to Kristin Nesbitt.

The Meridian FFA Alumni awarded William Stokes, Maddie Boyd, Jessica Kohntopp, Kristin Nesbitt, Clayton Christensen, Andrew Heikkila, and Lance Eaton.

The Gene and Marge Muller Scholarship was awarded to Kristin Nesbitt.

Senior awards were given to top members who will be graduating this year to recognize them for their hard work and dedication to the chapter over the past four years. Those awards were:

Outstanding FFA Chairman: Amanda Adams

Most Improved FFA Member: Jessica Kohntopp

FFA Senior Achievement Award: William Stokes

Outstanding FFA Member: Andrew Heikkila

Outstanding Shop Student: Cody Aden

Star Chapter Agribusiness Degree Award: Clayton Christensen

Star Chapter Farmer Degree Award: Maddie Bennett

Outstanding Senior FFA Leadership Award: Kristin Nesbitt

At the banquet we also installed our new chapter officer team. For 2016-2017, our constitutional officers are: Kyle Schmit as president, Mallie Miller as vice president, Ashlyn Schiers as secretary, Alexa Phillips as treasurer, Loretta Lacy as reporter and Ashton Shaul as sentinel.

Our other officers for this year are: Joe Wieting as alumni representative; Ellie Higgins as yearbook chief; Sydney Plum, Kiara Wetzel, and Kate Johnson as yearbook staff; Zach Phillips, Mollie Hiscox, Isaac Livesay and Kaitlin Muniz as representatives; and Cassidey Plum as parliamentarian.

The Meridian FFA Chapter would like to thank the West Ada District Service Center for letting us hold our banquet there this year.

We also would like to thank Washington Trust Bank, Investment Resources, Dynamite Marketing, C.F.I. Investments, Norco Inc., D.L. Evans Bank-Meridian Branch, Columbia Bank-Canyon County BBC, Western States Equipment and the Meridian FFA Alumni for all the financial support they have given us in the past year. And for the incredible food that was served, we would like to thank Jessie Miller of Cross Country Catering. Thanks again to everyone who supported us this past year.