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‘Ignite’ marks the 86th National FFA Convention

Published: Wednesday, Nov. 13, 2013 11:01 a.m. CDT

Lane Miller, Jeremy Stoll, Tyler Waddingham, John Gravlin, Darin Hatfield, Chad Lamb, Wyatt Thompson, Zach Hoffman, Taylor Rice, Madison Skarda, Brooke Thelen and Savannah Hartman know firsthand why “Ignite” was the theme for the 86th National FFA Convention in Louisville, Ky.

The convention’s theme symbolized the agricultural education organization’s mission to spark the passion and purpose to prepare students for success throughout their lives. More than 60,000 FFA members, advisers, supporters and guests were in attendance at the annual convention held Oct. 29– Nov. 2.

The Creston FFA Chapter continues to earn national recognition for its efforts in promoting and working toward the development of its members, chapter and community by developing individual and cooperative activities that enhanced its members’ life skills; promoting its ability to develop a positive image and interaction with support groups through cooperative and organized activities; and its developed community partnership in improving economic, environmental and human resources.

The chapter stressed the development of its members, chapter and community through a wide variety of projects. During the past school year, the chapter conducted more than 150 activities locally, attended 15 leadership workshops and conventions, participated in more than a dozen judging events and had members compete in contests above the local level.

Helping Hands, Make Creston Green and Christmas holiday activities have been identified as programs assisting in Creston FFA’s success in being recognized as one of Iowa’s top 25 chapters.

The chapter’s Helping Hands program provided the opportunity for FFA members to team up with special needs students and assist in their motor and communicative skill development.

Its Christmas holiday activities, including the CHS student body, involved purchasing presents for children, the collection of toys and canned goods. The canned goods and toys were given to the community pantry for distribution during the holiday season.

The chapter conducted a number of safety activities involving hundreds of area youths. Safety programs included its annual Bicycle Safety Program and rodeo where helmets were provided to participating youths. Hunter, farm and Halloween Safety program presentations were also given. The chapter also assisted with elementary counselors in conducting a “Red Ribbon Week” Drug Safety Awareness program for the students.

Members attending were also involved in several national leadership workshops that provided opportunities for personal growth and leadership development.

Convention participants also had the opportunity to listen to Rick Pintino, head coach for the Louisville and recent national champions. Hamilton brought the message of holding yourself to a “One Day Contract.”

Members also had the opportunity to hear Josh Sundquist, a motivational speaker and Paralympic skiing champion.

Future education and career exploration also was a key component of the convention. Students attending visited hundreds of exhibitors that provided information about educational and career possibilities held at the concurrent National FFA Alumni Convention and National Agricultural Career Show.

In addition to convention highlights, members also embarked on agriculturally-related tours of Claiborne Horse Farms, Kentucky Horse Park, Churchill Downs (home of the Kentucky Derby) and My Old Kentucky Home.

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