PAOLI – Orange County Farm Bureau has made a $1,000 donation to the Orleans Jr. Sr. High School FFA soils judging team to assist them in a trip to Oklahoma City, Oklahoma where they will compete in the National Land and Range Judging Contest.
The contest, which takes place May 3-5, allows students to test their skills in judging the adaptability of the land for various purposes, including farming, range management, and home development.
“Supporting local youth is a top priority for Orange County Farm Bureau,” said Jentzi Lash, Orange County Farm Bureau president. “These students represent the future of agriculture, and we congratulate them on making it to the national competition.”
The Orleans FFA soils judging team placed third in the senior division at the state soils contest held late last year in Jasper, IN, which qualified them for the national contest. Prior to the state contest, the team placed first in the Dubois County and the Washington County invitationals.
Team members Shane Cheatham, Julia Isom, Aiden Keller, and Draygen Pender will travel to Oklahoma City for the trip, along with their advisor, Hank Carson.
The Orange County Farm Bureau donation will help the team with travel funds, including paying for hotels and fuel, which will cost the chapter close to $3,000. Funds also are needed for meals, materials for the contest, and any other activities the team would like to do while in Oklahoma City.
“Farm Bureau’s donation to our soils trip will be so beneficial,” said Julia Carson, a member of the Orleans FFA soils judging team. “It will help us travel to more practice sites and learn as much information as possible.”
So far, the team has been able to raise $5,000 for their trip.
“We greatly appreciate the donation from Orange County Farm Bureau,” said Orleans High School FFA Advisor Hank Carson. “We’re a very active chapter and soils judging is one of our favorite competitions.”
Winners of the national competitions will be announced during an awards banquet on Thursday, May 5.