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Same Great Show New Location

November 19, 2013 - Dana Lantz
Those of you who don’t know, Farm News produces a farm show on the first Wednesday and Thursday of December each and every year. This year’s show will be the 12th time we have put together this two day event. The show dates this year are Wednesday, December 4th from 9am until 5pm and on Thursday, December 5th from 7:30am until 3pm.

This year we will have the event at a brand new location. In years past we had the event at the Career Education building on the campus of Iowa Central Community College but a little over a year ago Iowa Central purchased property on the east side of Fort Dodge and the show will be moved there from now on. What was formerly Smithway Motor Xpress, a long time trucking business in Fort Dodge, is now officially Iowa Central Community College East Campus. The official address is 2013 Quail Avenue, Fort Dodge for those of you who know how to punch an address into your GPS system. For those who do not, the location is ¾ of a mile south of Racing Unlimited (Old Hwy. 20) on the west side of the road. If coming to the show off of 4-Lane Hwy. 20 you would take exit #124 Fort Dodge / Coalville and go north approximately 4 miles with again the location being on the west side of the road. You will know you’re close when you see a billboard about the Farm News Ag Show ¾ of a mile south of the show location. It will be very easy to tell you’re approaching the right place when you see farm equipment in front of white and blue striped buildings. We will also have a huge 8’ x 8’ double-sided sign mounted on a trailer near the road entrance letting you know you have arrived at the correct location.

We have a very strong line-up of speakers for both days. The building that will house the speakers is located about 50 yards northeast from the building that will have house the exhibitors as well as where the food will be served. The Iowa Central East Campus complex map is on our website so take a glance at it since if you are reading this you are already on our website. Starting at 9 AM, Wednesday, December 4th we have Elwynn Taylor speaking about the weather outlook in 2014 and the possible impact on crops. Elwynn is the agricultural meteorologist for Iowa State University and for those of you who have never heard him speak is very entertaining and he always has a full house so get there early. Anderson Implement and United Bank of Iowa / Fort Dodge are both helping sponsor Elwynn’s appearance.

Starting at 10:30 AM on Wednesday we have Matt Helmers speaking on nutrient reduction strategies. Matt is an associate professor and extension agricultural engineer for Iowa State University. Nutrient reduction and a very hot topic right now and Matt is the foremost speaker on the subject. Matt’s presentation is sponsored by Minnesota Valley Testing Labs or MVTL out of New Ulm, Minnesota but also has a location in Nevada, Iowa.

Melissa O’Rourke, an Iowa State University farm and agribusiness management specialist will start speaking at 1:30 PM on Wednesday. Melissa will discuss the top ten farm estate and succession planning mistakes to avoid. With farming operations constantly being turned over to the next generation it is always a great subject matter for our show and always well attended. I talked to someone the other day who had listened to Melissa speak and the report was nothing but great things about her and her presentation. Melissa is sponsored by Northwest Bank of Fort Dodge.

Chad Hart is an Iowa State University crops specialist and will have the last presentation on Wednesday, starting at 3 PM. Chad will discuss the give and take of crop markets. With the uncertainty in crop prices I am predicting a large crowd for this presentation as well.

David Kruse, president of CommStock Investments and author of the “CommStock Report” and most importantly a columnist of Farm News will be the first speaker of the day on Thursday, December 5th. David will start speaking at 8 AM and based on his past speaking engagements at our show it will be standing room only so I suggest to everyone who plans to attend to get there early. The title of his presentation is “Going off the Deep End; Adapting to the Fall.” David is being sponsored Brokaw Supply Company.

Kelvin Leibold is an Iowa State University farm and agribusiness management specialist and will start speaking at 10 AM on Thursday. Kelvin has spoken at many of our past shows and speaks on a variety of topics. This year he will speak on the future of world agriculture and how it impacts local agriculture.

Our last presentation of our Farm News Ag Show starts at 1 PM on Thursday. Matt O’Neal is an Iowa State University associate professor in the department of entomology which for those unaware is about bee pollination. There has been a lot of press lately showing the bee population has been disappearing due to a variety of issues including insecticides. Matt’s presentation is about if corn and soybean farmers should care about pollinators and if this issue affects yield I would think the answer would be yes. Matt’s presentation is sponsored by Central Iowa Bee Supply.

I would like to personally thank Jerry Chizek out of the Webster County ISU Extension Office for without his help would not have had the high quality of speakers that we are able to bring to you. His helpfulness, knowledge of important topics and his Iowa State University contacts helped make this year’s line-up a success. I would also like to personally like to thank Blue Ribbon Pelham Waters of Fort Dodge for donating water that will be served free to patrons in the back of the speaker room.

Once again we have partnered with our friends out at R & J Material Handling of Fort Dodge for the drawing prize. Over the years we have had a variety of prizes, from a small 4-wheeler to corn burning stoves to chainsaws to even a trip to Vegas. In 2012 we had a 2-piece Kubota toolbox worth over $2,100 and everyone seemed to really like it. We decided to once again have our drawing for the same Kubota toolbox this year so make sure if attending that you sign up and possibly win. All you have to do is to fill out an entry slip at the Farm News booth which will be located near the show entrance. You do not have to be present to win. As a secondary prize you can also sign up to win a 1/16 die-cast metal replica of a Steiger Panther PTA 325 which is provided by the Le Mars Toy Store out of Le Mars, Iowa.

Lunch will be served both days from 11:30 AM to 1:30 PM both days. On Wednesday we will have the Webster County Pork Producers do the cooking and on Thursday we will have the Webster County Beef Producers light up the grills. The Growth Alliance Ag Leaders, which is an agricultural based organization out of Webster County, will serve the meals with help from Ag students from Iowa Central. On Thursday morning we will once again give out a FREE pancake breakfast to the public from 7:30 AM until 9:30 Am for the first 525 guests. First though, my staff of Kristi Elmore, Randy Sells, Shelly Wilcox and Cindy Hood will serve breakfast to our exhibitors and then serve to the general public. I think this also makes our show a bit more personal having the Farm News staff hand you your hot coffee and sausage. I try to help but my staff tells me I just get in the way. The pancake breakfast is brought to you by Chris Cakes and sponsored by Vance Lundell at Lundell Plastics.

I have had the responsibility of producing this show for 10 out of the 12 years of its existence but I absolutely could not do it without help from our show partners. First and foremost I would like to thank Iowa Central Community College. They contacted us about a year and a half ago about moving out to the new location but they have had to do a lot of work to make this location work. Not only did they have to really clean it up the facility they had to expand an overhead door from 12’ wide to 16’ wide so that equipment could fit in. The also had to convert an old restroom into a kitchen, so they certainly had a lot of “crap” to deal with, no pun intended. The college has been great to work with. Next I would like to thank R & J Material Handling for their partnership in the give-a-way prize. They are a great bunch of guys out there and most of them are friends of mine. The Webster County Farm Bureau has been a strong supporter of our show the last few years. I appreciate an annual invitation to their board meeting, to discuss the show, which means being fed very well. Vance Lundell of Lundell plastics has generously helped support the pancake breakfast for many years now and I believe the breakfast is a unique and special part of the show. This year’s speaker sponsors are Brokaw Supply, Anderson Implement, United Bank of Iowa, MVTL, Northwest Bank, and Central Iowa Bee Supply. Bringing in top notch speakers can be an expensive ordeal and without their help we couldn’t give visitors to the show top notch speakers to entertain and inform. Some general partners I would like to thank are John Pitzer Sales, Cen-Pe-Co, Webster County Pork and Beef Producers, the Growth Alliance Ag Leaders, Blue Ribbon Pelham Waters, and Le Mars Toy Shop. Lastly I would like to personally thank NEW Coop who helped us out with marketing cost, including a live radio remote out at the show.

I hope that if you take the time to read this blog that you will attempt to stop out at this year’s Farm News Ag Show. One of my staff looked ahead on extended weather for the week of the show and the reports made my smile. It predicted a little snow on Monday, December 2nd and cold temperatures in the mid to low 20’s the rest of the week. Since the temperatures are expected to be pretty chilly take a day away from farm work and head to Fort Dodge. From everyone at Farm News we are hopeful that the experience would be worth the drive.


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