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July 2018 "THE ADVISOR"


JULY  2018



  • The Advisor appreciates the opportunity to observe Ag Education students at their Placement and Production S.A.E.’s.  So far this summer visits have been made to Brevin Damrow, Gavin Weichel, Kynlee Uher, Creighton Neimeyer, August Gerlach, Savannah Gerlach, Madison Freese, Cassidy Kowalski, Caden Kapke, Logan Larson, Evan Larsen, Jacob Kapke and Alexis Gerritse.

  • Thank you Tri County FFA Alumni for your financial support at the local County Fair Livestock Premium Auctions.

  • Ag Education students Cole Siems and Evan Quackenbush showed beef at the July 19th Wymore Area 4-H Livestock Show.

  • Thank you Kyle Spilker for the use of cattle panels for the Human Foosball events.

  • Creighton Niemeyer, Chad Niemeier, Kynlee Uher, Carter Holtmeier and Sege Holtmeier helped with the DeWitt Celebration Foosball.  Thanks to each of you.

  • The Tri County FFA membership voted last spring to set the 2018-19 local, state and national dues at $20.00.  Of this $18.00 is forwarded on beyond the local treasury. The national organization should be sending you a quarterly FFA New Horizons magazine. (If not tell the Advisor)  Graduated members need to pay also to receive advanced degrees and continue their livestock showing eligibility. Dues need to be paid by Sept. 15 2018.

  • Thank you Evan and Logan Larson for helping set up the first Farmers Market on July 7th in DeWitt. Thank you Savannah & August Gerlach and Taylor Cammack for setting up the Market on July 21st.

  • Evan, Savannah and Taylor reported a very positive experience at the Nebraska Ag Youth Institute in Lincoln.  The event is a great networking activity.

  • The Tri County FFA Chapter received a $400.00 grant from the National FFA Organization through the Living-To-Serve program in July.  The funds are for community service activities this fall. Congratulations Members!!

  • ****  The Advisor has been contacted by two local ag producers needed farm help.  Classic Dairy needs weekend dairy calf chore help and Wes Cammack Farms is looking for general farm labor.  Mr. Barnard has details.



The Advisor is a monthly publication from the Tri County Agriculture Education Department.  The newsletter is forwarded to current and prospective Ag Education students, FFA Alumni, parents, administration and whoever wants to be informed of the exciting projects happening with Tri County students.

Mr. Barnard will serve as editor but anyone can submit items.  We will try using available emails. Perhaps a mailing would be better, we will see.  Please forward this letter to anyone you feel may be interested. Your input is appreciated.



Thousands of FFA members from across the nation attend the Washington Leadership Conference each summer.  The conference was created in 1969 and is currently centered at the Omni Shoreham Hotel in D.C. There are seven 6-day sessions in the summer each year.  FFA members experience the history of the nation’s capital and tour landmarks including the Washington Monument, National Mall, Arlington Cemetery, and the U.S. Capitol among others.  Members participate in congressional visits during the week. More information, prices, dates and schedules can be found at FFA.org/WLC.

If Tri County members are interested, then now is the time to plan and fundraise.  Visit with Mr. Barnard.



Kailey Weichel- FFA Secretary Book, purple; Madison Freese- FFA Scrapbook, purple; Pete Spilker- Welding Project, purple; Skye Washburn- Vet Science Poster, purple; Jazmin Dike- Vet Science Poster, purple; Breona Meyer- Vet Science Poster, blue; Chris Janssen- Vet Science Poster, blue; Kourtney Stege- Vet Science Poster, blue; Hannah Holtmeier- Crossbred Market Steer- Reserve Champion; Market Steer- Reserve Champion; Swine Pen of Three, Champion; Market Swine, Champion; Market Gilt, Champion; Sr. Swine Showmanship, Champion; Beef Showmanship, blue; Market Swine, 4 Purples; Carter Holtmeier- Breeding Heifer- Reserve Champion; Intermediate Swine Showman, Champion; Swine Pen of Three, Reserve Champion; Market Gilt, Reserve Champion; Market Swine, 4 Purples; 3rd place Livestock Judging Contest; Beef Showmanship, Reserve intermediate Champion; Beef Carcass, Reserve Champion;  Brevin Damrow- Sr. Swine Showmanship, Reserve Champion; Swine Pen of Three, Purple; Market Swine, 3 Purple & 1 Blue; Chad Niemeier- Sr. Swine Showmanship, Blue; Swine Pen of Three, blue; Market Swine, 3 blues; Gavin Weichel-Angus Breeding Heifer- blue; Livestock Judging Contest, 8th place; Beef Showmanship, Purple; Market Heifer, Purple    Kailey Weichel- Beef Showmanship, blue; Market Steer, blue; Breeding Heifer, purple    Alexis Gerritse- Goat Showmanship, blue; Meat Goats- 2 purples; Goat Carcass- 3rd Place;



The Tri County FFA Chapter hosted a Human Foosball Tournament at the the 2018 Jefferson County Fair.  The event was held in front of the grandstands on July 15th.

The team “Elite 6” was the champion going 4-0 in the tourney.  Team members were Nick Nelson, Captain; Hayley Denner, Kailey Weichel, Gavin Weichel, Mallory Denner and Brevin Damrow.  The “Showman” placed 2nd and their captain was Kyan Sones. Other team members were Kellan Schlichtman, Tegan Kapke, Thomas Hansmeyer, MaKenzie Peitzmeier, Megann Freese and Hayden Nutsch.

The six person teams had three males and three females.  The matches were played to four goals. The arena featured six cattle panels lined with snow fence.  A kickball had to exit a 4’ opening for a score. Players had to hold on to sliding PVC pipe guided through a wire.  Other teams competing were the Incredibles, Angus-Bangus, and The Joshy Boys.



The Tri County FFA Chapter used two events to promote the Nebraska State FFA and Farm Bureau “Connecting Chapters” program recently.  The program uses FFA Chapters to educate elementary youth in the schools and community. The members constructed a “Panel Maze” at the Jefferson County Fair for youth.  The Kids Zone was 18’ x 18’ and featured switchbacks and dead ends. Youth received a Farm Bureau agriculture activity book for participating. The Tri County FFA members cooperated with the Fairbury, Diller-Odell and Meridian Chapters in erecting a booth in the Merchants Building targeted at youth.  Students were invited to color ag pictures. The pictures were displayed in the booth.


Hi, I’m Savannah Gerlach and I serve as the Tri County Chapter President.  The officer team would like to welcome all Tri County FFA members grades 7-12 or any high school students interested in Ag Education to our annual summer cookout on July 31st.  The event will be at 7:00 pm and includes food, games and canoeing. We eat at 7:00 but you can come earlier. The picnic will be at the Pohlman Pond located 3 miles east and 2 miles north and a quarter west of DeWitt.  Follow the wood chip driveway to the lake. If you need a ride contact Mr. Barnard or one of the officers.  Looking forward to another great FFA year!,



Jackson Kirchoff- Goat Showmanship, Sr. Reserve Champion; Breeding Goat, 2 blues; Market Goats, 2 blues    Logan Brown- Goat Showmanship, blue; Breeding Goat, 2 blues; Breeding Goat, purple   Cassidy Kowalski- Sr. Beef Showmanship, red; Stocker Feeder Bull, blue; Market Heifer, purple; Rate of Gain for Market Heifers, Champion Plaque


The Advisor has had several FFA membership questions especially about junior high and out-of-school students.  Be sure to check the Tri County FFA Constitution also but this is what the National FFA Constitution says:

Active Membership - To be eligible for active membership in a chartered FFA chapter, a student must be enrolled in a secondary agricultural education program. State associations may consider “secondary agricultural education programs” to be grades 7-12. To become an active member and retain membership, a student must:

1. While in school, be enrolled in at least one agricultural education course during the school year and/or follow a planned course of study; either course must include a supervised agricultural experience program, the objective of which is preparation for an agricultural career.

2. Show an interest in the affairs of the organization by attending meetings, striving for degrees of membership and participating in other organized activities of the chapter.

3. Pay all current state and national dues or program affiliation fee by the date determined by the chapter.

4. Display conduct consistent with the ideals and purposes of the National FFA Organization. A member may retain active membership until November 30, following the fourth National FFA Convention after graduation from high school.


FFA members helped make the 2018 Jefferson Co. Progressive Safety Day a success for 90 area youth.  On July 23rd Alexis Gerritse helped set up the county fairgrounds for the safety event. On July 24th  Alex Malchow, Alexis Gerritse and Hannah Holtmeier served as group leaders for the day. Alexis participated in a safety puppet show for the children. Advisor Dave Barnard was one of nine presenter groups.  His topic was, “Firearm Safety”. Mr. Barnard taught the Nebraska Hunter Education classes for 25 years. Each member received a T-shirt and a lot of personal satisfaction for making a difference in our rural communities.


There are basically three areas of contests for agricultural education students to participate in.  Each contest has their own guidelines and deadlines so review the rules or ask the advisor. Some are team events and some are individual.  Some have junior divisions (9th &10th graders) and senior divisions (11th & 12th graders). Some require official dress and some require special protective clothing.

  1. NRD Contests- Sponsored by Natural Resource Districts; they include range judging, Envirothon and land judging.

  2. Leadership Skills Events (LSE)- FFA Contests; compete at districts and qualify for state.  See the neaged.org site for complete list. Some contests are parliamentary procedure, creed speaking, ag demonstration and natural resources speaking.

  3. Career Development Events (CDE)- These contests are based on curriculum content.  They have district & state contest with qualifying in most events. Contests include horticulture, livestock judging, ag mechanics, agronomy, ag science, floriculture, biotech and vet science.  Visit neaged.org for the guidelines and rules. Questions?-See the Advisor.


*** Chapter needs member help in working the Plymouth Days Little Kids Tractor Pull on August 18th***

*** FFA Officers will conduct a Ag Orientation 8/21 at 7:00 pm for 8th and 9th graders.****