On February 9th, FFA (Future Farmers of America) students from all over the North Coast will gather on the College of the Redwoods main campus for a day of contests and activities to showcase their agriculture-related skills and knowledge.
This is the unofficial kick-off to the FFA field day season, which takes students all over the state competing in everything from mechanical aptitudes related to agricultural equipment, to knowledge-based tests about milk quality and marketing regulations.
Although the field day is billed as an FFA competition, it’s really a multi-disciplinary event. As instructor Franz Rulofson explains, “Along with all of the agriculture contests, we also have Welding, Wood Working and Forestry events, so this is a great opportunity for students to get a look at the CR campus and get a feel for the different programs we offer.” This year CR will host 143 students representing 43 different teams.
Local retailer Papé Machinery (formerly Fernbridge Tractor) will be onsite with heavy equipment for the mechanical skills portion of the event and the Redwood Region Logging Conference has donated a throwing ax that will go to the all-around champion of the forestry competition, which quizzes students on tree measurement, plant identification, and map reading among other skills.
There are 24 students registered for the welding contest, which is highly competitive and includes a written test, judged welds and an exam requiring students to visually identify different types and techniques of welds.
At the close of the day, students gather for an awards ceremony where instructors and judges will award ribbons and other accolades to both team and individual winners.
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