Fayette FFA 11.26.08

Written by David Green.

Six Fayette FFA members attended the 81st National FFA Convention in Indianapolis, Ind.

Parker Stockburger, Kalley Martin, Dakota Shay, Jake West, Amanda Gilmore and Reba Rash were chaperoned by Geoff Gilmore and Ms. Wise.

During the first night of the trip to convention students were entertained by country music singer Taylor Swift.  The concert was in the Colts new Lucas Oil Stadium.

During the first day of the convention listened to a talk by Dana Hee. Students recalled portions of her speech the rest of the week and really took away a lot of inspiring words to live and learn by.

At the Indianapolis Convention Center, members attended a Career and Trade Show filled with more than 300 exhibitors. These ranged from displays by universities, business and industries to many fun activities for the students to engage in.

Students were able to weld, take apart and put back together a chain saw, talk to college representatives and above all, look at all the opportunities that agriculture has to offer them today.

“The career show is a great place for students to look at just about any agricultural field and determine if this is something they may want to do for the rest of their lives,” Ms. Wise said.

After a great day of meeting new people, hearing a great speaker and learning from business leaders, the group headed for evening of dancing and dinner at the FFA’s Buckeye Bash. Members where able to meet with other FFA representatives from around the state.

The convention trip included a day of agricultural industry tours.

First on the list of stops was the Tyson Meat Packing Plant. Students were able to look at the processes meat goes through from the animal to the store wrapping. They saw nearly all of the process in the plant and were able to learn all of the techniques used and the uses for the various parts of the animal.

“It was amazing because we were able to see up close and personal the processes that swine go through,” said Jake West. “We were able to learn where many of the different by-products of the industry were sent and what they are process for.”

After Tyson, the group visited Carley Elk Farm and later Not Just Popcorn, a company that specializes in more than 280 flavors of popcorn. Flavors include caramel, dill and even an FFA blend of blue raspberry and vanilla.

“After all of our travels, meeting new people, hearing great speakers, and lending a helping hand, all the members believe that this trip to the National FFA Convention was a great opportunity for the members to really see what all FFA has to offer,” West said.

– Jake West, reporter

  • Front.sculpta
    SCULPTORS—Morenci third grade students Emersyn Thompson (left) and Marissa Lawrence turn spaghetti sticks into mini sculptures Friday during a class visit to Stair District Library. All Morenci Elementary School classes recently visited the library to experience the creative construction toys purchased through the “Sculptamania!” project, funded by a Disney Curiosity Creates grant. The grant is administered by the Association for Library Services to Children, a division of the American Library Association.
  • Funcolor
    LEONIE LEAHY was one of three local hair stylists who volunteered time Friday at the Morenci PTO Fun Night. Her customer, Aubrey Sandusky, looks up at her mother while her hair takes on a perfect match to her outfit. Leahy said she had a great time at the event—nothing but happy clients.
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    LEARNING THE ROPES—Kristy Castillo (left), co-owner of Mane Street Salon, works with Kendal Kuhn as Sierra Orner takes a phone call. The two Morenci Area High School juniors spent Friday at the salon as part of a job shadowing experience.
  • KayseInField
    IN THE FIELD—2004 Morenci graduate Kayse Onweller works in a test plot of wheat in Texas. She’s part of Bayer CropScience’s North American wheat breeding program based in Nebraska, where she completed post-graduate work in plant breeding and genetics.
  • Front.winner
    REFEREE Camden Miller raises the hand of Morenci Jr. Dawgs wrestler Ryder Ryan as his opponent leaves the mat in disappointment. Morenci’s youth wrestling program served as host for a tournament Saturday morning to raise money for the club. Additional photos are on the back page.
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    SHERWOOD STATE Bank opened its Fayette office at a grand opening Friday morning, drawing a large crowd to view the renovated building. Above, Burt Blue talks to teller Cindy Funk, while his wife, Jackie, looks around the new office. The Blues missed the opening and took a quick tour on Tuesday. Few traces remain of the former grocery store and theater, however, part of the original brick wall still shows in the hallway leading to the back of the building. The drive-through window should be ready for customers later in the month.
  • Front.carry.casket
    CARRYING—Riley Terry (blue jacket) and Mason Vaughn lead the way, carrying an empty casket outside to the hearse waiting at the curb. Morenci juniors and seniors visited Eagle Funeral Home last week to learn about the role of a funeral director and to understand the process of arranging for a funeral.
  • Front.make.three
    FROM THE LEFT, Landon Wilkins, Ryan White and Logan Blaker try out their artistic skills Saturday afternoon at the Morenci PTO’s first Date to Create event. More than 50 people showed up to create decorated planks of wood to hang from rope. The event served as a fund-raiser for miscellaneous PTO projects. Additional photos are on the back of this week’s Observer.

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