You Can Drive My Tractor

…All the way to Indianapolis.


Eric Miller

The seven travelers pose for a picture at a stop on the trip. The FFA members raise money for the journey by selling fruit.

Camryn Church, Editor

Seven FFA members made the eight-hour journey to Indianapolis two weeks ago for the National FFA Convention. On the first day, the students checked in and got their IDs for the convention. The second day, they were able to go to the Indianapolis Motor Speedway. “We also were able to go and kiss the bricks just as all the winners are able to do,” sophomore Bryan York said. The students also toured the museum and got the chance to see some of the winning cars throughout the years. Then, they were able to go to the National FFA Headquarters, where they got to see some famous jackets from past years and learn about FFA history.

The students then traveled to the NCAA headquarters and learned about how the NCAA came to be and why they added so many more sports besides football. They also had a competition between the boys and girls in the vertical jump, free-throw shooting and soccer goal-shooting. The girls won all of the challenges. Later that evening, the FFA members attended the opening session of the convention, where all of the FFA members were welcomed. They also attended an Old Dominion concert. 

On Thursday, they went to Kentucky and visited the Jim Beam distally, Churchill Downs–where the Kentucky Derby is held–and the Louisville Slugger baseball bat factory. York said, “It was really fun to go to Kentucky for the day and to do some sightseeing.” On Friday, the students started their day off by going to the third section of the convention. They were able to meet with different colleges and businesses. The space they were in was the same size as about five football fields. The students also had the opportunity to go to an apple orchard with the Griswold FFA chapter.

There were two Atlantic alumni in attendance at the convention–Cole Jipsen and Emily Saeugling. They were receiving the American Degree, which is the highest award an individual can achieve in FFA. Cody McCreedy also earned his American Degree this go around, however he was not in attendance at the convention. 

“The trip is a lot of fun. This trip alone lets you explore a world outside of the Midwest, and to meet people from New York Georgia, and California. We even met some people from Alaska and Puerto Rico,” York said. FFA members were there from Tuesday to Sunday. To fundraise, the FFA students sell fruit every fall. The event starts in November, and the FFA members deliver the food in December.