The fall farm shows are a big deal for manufacturers and growers alike. Shows like Farm Progress and Husker Harvest Days give the Valley team a chance to connect with growers, see what other ag companies are developing and reconnect with peers from other companies.
Growers who attend can talk to Valley representatives and dealers about new and existing products, and peruse other booths to gather information and ideas.
Plus, the shows include great food, such as homemade ice cream, steak sandwiches and turkey legs, free stuff from bags to hats; livestock; concerts; and drawings for iPads, end guns and cars. Whew!
But this year, all that was overshadowed by the weather. Everyone was glued to their smartphones, watching the radar as storms swirled around and over Boone, Iowa, and Wood River, Neb. There was rain and wind. Lightning shut down Farm Progress on its final day.
And then there was mud. Lots and lots of mud. Muddy parking lots, muddy booths, muddy roads, muddy khakis. Cars and trucks got stuck in the mud; four-wheelers and bigger trucks pushed them out of the mud.
Rain and mud shut down Husker Harvest on Wednesday. Thursday brought more rain and cold temperatures, but many visitors. A Valley Product Manager said he was so busy he didn't leave the booth all day. Meanwhile, one show attendee said his visit was the worst three hours of his life – that’s pretty telling, coming from a farmer!
In the end, we all muddled through, made some connections and generated ideas for next year’s show.
But we’re all hoping for a little sun at the upcoming Sunbelt Ag Expo, Oct. 14-15 in Moultrie, Ga. See you there!