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FFA Popcorn Festival Festivities


FFA Popcorn Festival Festivities


Midwest Central’s FFA chapter had a very busy Labor Day weekend! We kicked of Manito’s annual Popcorn Festival by creating our FFA float. After the city’s parade we headed straight to the park where members were purchased in an auction in exchange for eight hours of service. We are proud to announce that we had a very successful Labor Auction, and we would like to thank everyone that came out to purchase one of our members. We appreciate all of the wonderful people in our community!  Thanks to the auctioneers for volunteering their time for us as well. We followed up the very eventful Saturday by helping Sunday with the Pedal Pull! We would never be able to be as successful as we are without all of your help. Another shout out goes to all the FFA members that gave a hand with building our float. We thought it looked pretty awesome!!!


First Week of Ag Class

 First Week of Ag Class 2K16

Man did Midwest Central’s Ag classes have a busy week!!! Students kicked off the week by finding our personalities through an animal personality test. The young agriculturists took a test on their qualities, and discovered their strengths and weaknesses. Our first day was followed by getting our binders ready for an exhilarating year in Ag!

We carried on our eventful week by welcoming the amazing Matt Montgomery to our classes to discuss the use of all of his classes in his everyday job! That night we had our annual plot night. We had a very successful night, and we appreciate all the help from the community in getting our plot taken care of! Friday, Ag classes had the first ever Ag Olympics; teams were created based on the personality tests taken on Monday. Events in this year’s Ag Olympics were Slippery Melons, the Holy Water Challenge, and Butter Stick Toss.

Midwest Central’s FFA finished off the week with Fall Callout at the Goetze’s house! We welcomed our newest members and caught up with familiar faces while participating in Team-Building Games; such as, the Human Knot, Magic Carpet Ride, and the Human Ladder game. We would like to give huge shoutout to the Goetze’s for stepping up and hosting an absolutely amazing night that all of our members loved


Meet Mrs. T!

Hello FFA members and friends of the Midwest Central FFA. My name is Mrs. DeAnna Thomas (Mrs. T for short). I’m married to local farmer and MCHS FFA alum, Braden Thomas and the Mom to our five month daughter, DeLaney Jean. This will be my third year teaching at MCHS.

 I’m a 2010 graduate of the University of Illinois where I received my B.S. in Agricultural Communications. I often say I arrived at teaching agriculture by chance, but have stayed by choice. Learning new things is one of my passions, so teaching allows me the opportunity to be a lifelong learner and awaken a passion for learning in others.

The most rewarding part of my job is seeing the progression of students from freshmen year to senior year. Knowing that I played a role in that development is exciting and makes for a very fulfilling career. I really enjoy the special responsibilities we have during the summer and the involvement that we can have in agriculture at all levels.

At the end of my farm reports while I was farm broadcasting, I would close with this quote to remind listeners of just how much our local farmers contribute to feeding and fueling the word – “Agriculture is more than food, feed, and fuel – it’s the foundation of our future.” This quote is even more relevant in our Agriculture Education Department at MCHS.

I truly believe that when a student enrolls in Intro to Ag, they open a door to a world of endless opportunity when it comes to premier leadership, personal growth, and career success. I’m excited to jumpstart a new set of students down the path of learning to do, doing to learn, earning to live, and living to serve. Even if you think FFA and “that farm class” isn’t your cup of tea, I encourage any student who wants to be challenged, grow and develop leadership skills, and learn how and where your food comes from to open that door and enroll in Intro to Agriculture. Our door is open and welcome to everyone who is willing to learn!  It may just change your life!


School’s BAAA-CK!!!


Welcome BAAA-CK Blue Jackets!!!

As school begins, so does FFA. All high-schoolers are invited to join FFA. The only requirement is that you must be enrolled in an Ag class. If you are not, don’t sweat it because you have a couple days to request different classes!!!

FFA is an organization that formerly stood for “Future Farmers of America”; however, The National FFA Organization has since removed ties with the former acronym in order to open all the opportunities of FFA to all students even if you don’t live on a farm. Here at Midwest Central we take those oppurtunities very seriously, and strive to be the best. On behalf of the FFA Officer Team we would like to welcome you into the FFA family with open arms!!!

If you would like to join FFA membership dues are $30 with our chapter t-shirt included. We definitely encourage any and all high schoolers to be a part of an amazing organization!

In other news, the FFA’s first event for the year is the annual Fall Call-Out. This event welcomes all members to engage and interact with other Blue Jackets!!! This year’s Fall Call-Out will be held at Josh Goetze’s house on August 28th, at 5:00 p.m. until 8:00 p.m. FFA members be on the look out for flyers with information on what to bring! We invite you all out to have a great time!!!

And finally we would like to wish for a great year with all of our new FFA recruits!!!

The FFA Officer Team


Officer Retreat

Last Wednesday FFA officers had their annual Officer Retreat. The crew started off the morning by volunteering at the new playground at Veterans’ Park. They followed up their community service by planning their year. In addition, they also participated in Escape the Room in Bloomington where they also met up with our sister chapter Spoon River. All the officers had an amazing time and wish for a great year! They also established the FFA calendar that can be downloaded into your phone by simply clicking here.


Last Wednesday FFA officers had their annual Officer Retreat. The crew started off the morning by volunteering at the new playground at Veterans’ Park. They followed up their community service by planning their year. In addition, they also participated in Escape the Room in Bloomington where they also met up with our sister chapter Spoon River. All the officers had an amazing time and wish for a great year!

Posted by Midwest Central FFA on Sunday, August 7, 2016


2015 Section 12 Horse Judging

This year the chapter attended the section 12 horse judging contest held in Delavan at Rawlings 4R Arena. We took two teams of five that included the following members: Lane Prather, Sara Helms, Emma Helms, Kylie Byrd, Maddie Barth, Montana Onken, Makenna Huff, Michaela Lane, Emma James, and John Wilcox.

Horse Judging 2

Photo Courtesy of Section 12 FFA President, Corrine Harding


The teams competed against other chapters from the section. In attendance was 82 eager FFA members who were ready to judge the horses in three halter classes, two western pleasure classes, and one pattern class. It was a good contest for kids to start in and test their skills in horse judging. All together it was a good night for our the MCW chapter as we took home second place as a team with our standout judger Maddie Barth placing 1st individually with a score of 294 out of 300.


Horse Judging 1

Photo Courtesy of Section 12 FFA President, Corrine Harding

Our chapter is also proud to announce due to our success we are sending a team of four – Maddie Barth – Lane Prather – Kylie Byrd and Sara Helms to the state contest at Blackhawk College. We would also like to thank Nikki Klein and Brody Little for allowing us to come out to their farm to practice judging and for their tips and tricks that helped us throughout the contest.


2015 Farm Progress Show

On Wednesday, September 2, Blake Meyer and I were given the privilege to attend the Farm Progress Show. The show was a great opportunity to learn more about what drives agriculture here in Illinois. Ranging from tires to seed, we saw just about anything and everything that has to do with agriculture while there.  

Most importantly, the two of us were able to stop at Zimmatic’s tent. For those readers who don’t know, Zimmatic by Lindsay is a company which produces high-performing irrigation systems. During our stop at the tent, Tony Burks was kind enough to tell us more about Zimmatic and their products. We even got to meet some members from Lindsay and Zimmatic!

We would again like to express our gratitude to Lindsay and Zimmatic for donating their time, equipment and service to our FFA irrigated plot system.  It is because of local farmers, Scott Warner, Tony Burks, and Lindsay’s dedication to our FFA program that our FFA Plot and Program is successful. 

I would also like to extend a heartfelt thank you to Wyatt Meyer for taking us. It was an amazing experience and I’m glad I had the opportunity to go. Now, we are looking forward to our 2015 Plot Harvest and we wish all of our farmers a safe and successful harvest. 

-CoPlot Chair, Josh Goetze


Pictured from Left to Right – TN+W’s Tony Burks, Co-Plot Chair Josh Goetze, Plot Chair Blake Meyer, and Jason Parker, Director of Sales and Marketing Operations for Lindsay.


2015 Plot Night

On Wednesday, August 26th we had our annual plot day. Plot day is to showcase what we’ve been growing in our plot and to show our appreciation to all of the farmers, businesses and seed representatives who make this possible for us. Running the plot is sometimes a lot of work but in the end it teaches you many responsibilities and is worth it in the long run.

Plot Night 2


The first thing we did at plot night was eat dinner and directly after that we had Plot Advisor, Zac Charlton, talk to the guests about everything that went on this year, from how the field was set up to how much fertilizer it has on it and who all have worked to make the plot successful.

Plot Night 1


After that we used a trailer, donated by Brian Frank, and took the guests over to the plot so the seed representatives could talk to the farmers about their plot entries.  Each seed representative was allowed to enter two different hybrids.  Also, Tony Burks talked about the new additions that TN&W have put in the plot and on the irrigation such as experimental nozzles and rain buckets and soil moisture probes. Overall plot night was a success and hopefully can be even better next year.   

Blake Meyer, Plot Chair 2015-2016

Plot Night 3

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