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Community will celebrate farms, FFA

By Tom Rivers, Editor Posted 11 March 2015 at 12:00 am

File photo by Tom Rivers – Jack Hill, a junior FFA member in Medina, recites the FFA creed during the Farmer to Neighbor Night last March at the White Birch Golf Course in Lyndonville. The event returns this Saturday beginning at 6 p.m.

LYNDONVILLE – The farm and FFA community will gather on Saturday for Farmer to Neighbor Night, an annual tradition for 17 years at the tail end of winter with the planting season not too far away.

About 200 people usually attend the event at the White Birch Golf Course, with the program shining a light on the FFA programs in Albion and Medina. Those students recite the creed, deliver a prepared speech and help with a auction to raise money for the FFA programs.

“We like to focus on the youth,” said Barry Flansburg, a member of the Albion FFA Alumni. “The kids learn early on that agriculture is a big thing in Orleans County and how it interacts with the community.”

The most recent Agriculture Census from 2012 counted a $150 million impact in the farm economy for Orleans County, and that only was for the sale of milk, fruit, vegetables and other farm products. It didn’t include the ripple effect with equipment dealers, truckers, seed companies and other businesses that serve agriculture.

The FFA Alumni, Medina FFA, Cornell Cooperative Extension, Soil & Water Conservation District and Chamber of Commerce all work together planning and promoting the dinner. There is still time to reserve a ticket by calling the Extension by Thursday at 798-4265.

Flansburg said the annual event comes at a time when farmers and community members are weary from the cold weather.

“It’s been a long hard winter,” he said. “We can’t wait for spring.”