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Lines, Tires, and Balers - Oh My! FCHS Annual Tractor Day

Compiled by Eagle Staff Writers

On March 24, the back row of Law parking lot was lined up with 20 tractors owned by members of Future Farmers of America (FFA) for all Eagles on campus to come and see.

"Tractor Day allows our FFA members to show off their tractors and expertise," Jean Capps, FFA advisor and agriculture teacher, summarised. "They used to have it in the [early] 2000s but it was only periodic then. It’s been consistent since 2008. Of course we missed out those two years with COVID but here we are back again nice and strong with 20 tractors."

For members of FFA, Tractor Day is apparently a very exciting time, even though it requires a lot of preparation.

"It was an honor to be able to bring the tractor to school because we had to get permission and it was a long process but it’s very rewarding," freshman Brylie Altice explained. "Franklin County is all about agriculture so it feels good to know people care about Tractor Day."

Teachers and their students seemed to enjoy Tractor Day and the meaning behind it just as much.

"As a Spanish teacher, we are very culturally aware in my classroom. This is part of our culture in Franklin County," Spanish teacher Laura Bird shared. "I think it’s important that our kids understand ourselves before we understand other cultures."

While many students attended Tractor Day with one or more of their classes, some were not able to attend this Franklin County traditional event. Keep driving on for a summary of all there was to see and do.

This year's turnout of both FFA members and tractors was a record high, according to Capps. "This is the most we’ve had since COVID and right prior to COVID this has been our biggest tractor day. Also this year, we have the most membership that we’ve had, I think we have 160 or 170.," she said. (Photo by Emma Duncan)

(From left to right) Top row: junior Kylie Parmelee, senior Kayleigh Hazlet, sophomore Faith Keene, junior Katie Wells, senior Faith Feazell, and juniors Ashlyn Grimes and Bralynn Beamesderfer. Bottom row: Agriculture teachers Morgan Washburn and Jacob Wilson, senior Madison Bray, and agriculture teachers Jean Capps and Kacey Arrington pose in and around a student's tractor. These FFA officers and advisors are responsible for planning and hosting all FFA events, especially Tractor Day, which takes the most preparation. (Photo by Emma Duncan)

Sophomores Lucas Amos and Layla Willie sit inside a tractor that was used for educational purposes and for class competition pet food donations during Tractor Day. (Photo by Abby Paterson)

Junior Abigail Jamison leans against her tractor, which she was reportedly excited to show off, but not to drive to campus. "It was a little hectic because we had to stop and get fuel and my trailer didn’t have trailer brakes. There were a few [cars] behind us but when we stopped for fuel they were able to pass," she recalled. (Photo by Emma Duncan)

Just like senior football players are allowed to name their favorite teachers "jersey worthy," FFA officers were given the chance to let impactful teachers wear their jackets. History teacher Taylor Irish, pictured above, was chosen by junior Ashlyn Grimes. (Photo by Evan Heins)

Sophomore Lucas Amos brought his family's 1963 John Deere tractor, named "Big John," for the second year in a row. (Photo by Emma Duncan)

From top to bottom: Freshman Remington Davis, senior Robert Pagans, and Freshman Christian Davis inspect one of the tractors featured on March 24. Each student cleaned their tractor before the showing and throughout the event to properly show off their equipment. FFA Parliamentarian Braylnn Beamesderfer had quite the time preparing her tractor. "I had to get it out early and clean it because it was caked in manure. It was awful," she recalled. (Photo by Emma Duncan)

Along with their students, teachers, administrators, and even cafeteria staff members came out to see all that Tractor Day had to offer. While he's just a freshman, Ayden Cepelnik, pictured above sitting on his tractor, was able to teach those older than him about agriculture. "I came for the fun of it, ya know. Even though we’re a bunch of teenagers, we can still teach people a great deal about tractors and how to fix them when they’re just getting into agriculture," Cepelnik explained. "I just got my tractor about two months ago, fixed it up, there were some minor issues but other than that she runs good. I’ve custom-made a lot of stuff on it to make it better, trying to keep it nice." (Photo by Abby Paterson)

Freshman Gavin Powell wore blue to match his Ford tractor, which has multiple uses. "This tractor is made for mowing and raking and all that stuff," he added. (Photo by Emma Duncan)

Senior Braeden Gable showed his tractor off to several students in the special education program. In order to bring his tractor, Gable had to take part in many FFA-related events. "The students that brought tractors had to participate in activities, contests, and sell fruit, you know we sold citrus and strawberries, so they would get points," Capps said. "They had to have 80 points to be able to bring their tractor. They got a point for fruit, a point for every flat of strawberries, 20 points for competition, five points for coming to meetings, extra points for wearing an FFA shirt to meetings, the leadership conference in September was 20 points, so they had a lot of opportunities this year." (Photo by Abby Paterson)

Along with bringing their tractor, FFA members had to create an informational poster with their tractor's make, model, the year it was built, as well as it's uses so students and staff could learn about tractors even if the owner wasn't around. "I feel that it gives everyone who is uneducated and curious about agriculture an opportunity to see what we work for and what we do," Beamesderfer commented. "They ask questions and it let's people be aware of what agriculture does." (Photo by Abby Paterson)

Sophomore Conner Johnson and Freshman Brylie Altice both used Tractor Day as a way to educate others about agriculture and showcase what they're passionate about. "Our tractor is very important to us," Altice said. "We use it for almost everything on the farm. It’s very reliable and it can basically do everything we need. We know that if something happens with the other tractors we can always count on this one." (Photo by Emma Duncan)

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