National FFA Week is here again in the year 2014. The Rocky Mountain FFA Chapter started its chapter when our schools consolidated, and we are excited to keep promoting agriculture and to help the public know more about the organization.
The FFA organization has changed quite a bit since it was founded in 1928. For example, the acronym FFA no longer stands for Future Farmers of America. It was changed in 1988 in order to better represent the organization’s members. In 1930 the official FFA creed and colors, national blue and corn gold, were adopted. The creed, written by E. M. Tiffany, has been amended three times but still retains its original basic tenets.
The Rocky Mountain FFA chapter has been busy since we have been an official chapter. In the year of 2013, we doubled our membership. We improved our leadership skills by taking new members and chapter officers to the state FIRE/CPC leadership conference in Gillette.
In October, we assisted our parent/alumni support group host a Halloween carnival for the community. At the carnival, chapter members organized a variety of games, face painting and even a haunted house.
On Jan. 3, Rocky Mountain FFA hosted our first annual Snowball Dance. We wanted to promote FFA within the school and have fun while doing it. Considering it was our first dance event, we believe it had a good turnout.
The RMHS FFA Chapter is very involved in helping the community. Our chapter put together a basket of homemade items to donate to the Wyoming FFA Foundation’s auction. Members also helped clean up the NEPECO facility that burned down in Byron. We cleaned equipment so that it could be sold, gathered trash, gathered tools and much, much more.
Our FFA chapter also visited the New Horizons Care Center before Christmas to make snowmen, reindeer, and gingerbread man ornaments. Before our school took a break for Christmas, the FFA also held a canned food drive competition for the high school students at RMHS. With a reward of root beer floats for the winning class, our high school successfully gathered 415 cans to give to the fire department for use in their Christmas food basket program. In addition to the cans, our chapter donated an additional 16 boxes of fruit from our fruit fundraiser. The fire department used the food to create food baskets for needy families in the community.
Last year, we expanded our recycling program in the high school to include the middle school. So far this year, we have recycled over 700 pounds of paper and more than 100 plastic bottles and containers, in addition to cans and cardboard.
Rocky Mountain High School received two visits from Wyoming State FFA officers this year. Both times, the officers taught us a little something about leadership and teamwork. They created fun workshops requiring each person to find something good about themselves, help each other and overcome obstacles. The first officer visit was in December. The FFA chapter hosted a Christmas party for all of the members and officers. We played fun games, participated in more teamwork workshops, watched a movie and stayed overnight at the school. During the second officer visit in January, the chapter took the state officers sledding and ice-skating. Everyone who participated thoroughly enjoyed the time they spent on the snow and ice.
We are now busy getting ready for competition. We have teams in Environmental and Natural Resources, Ag Mechanics, Horse Judging, Public Speaking, Meats Judging and Veterinary Science. Our annual steak dinner and auction will be April 4, which is right before our state convention. We hope to see many of you then!
Overall, the Rocky Mountain FFA Chapter had a successful, charitable and entertaining year. We feel that we have promoted FFA in our homes and community. We have helped the community, and had bundles of fun. We are looking forward to making 2014, and all of the years to come, just flat out fantastic.
By Lily Myers, Chapter Reporter