The Delaware State Fair is known for many things, whether it’s the rides, entertainment or exhibits. But the fair is also known as a culmination of the hard work of the local school FFA chapters, with awards allowing each program bragging rights for the next year.
The Delaware State Fair Awards breakfast was held Friday at the M&T Bank Grandstand with several local students and educators taking home awards.
On hand for the event was Lt. Gov. Matt Denn, who spoke to the students on the important part FFA plays in Delaware.
“You hear people like our state legislators talking all the time about how we want the best educated students and the best educated work-force in the country here in Delaware. The FFA is really a great part of that,” Denn said. “It really makes me proud as a Delawarean to see the work that you have going on.”
The awards breakfast includes recognition of students for various projects and exhibits; it honors teachers as well. There wasn’t one school that completely dominated the ceremony, but several schools won multiple awards.
Milford High School won quite a few team and individuals awards including for the National Poultry career development event. Clay Shirey placed first individually while his Milford school mate Eleanor Pittman finished second in the category. Shirey and Pittman, along with Colby Miller, helped Milford High School take place first as a team in the National Poultry CDE. Shirey said the work was tedious but they learned a lot of new skills.
“It really feels great,” Shirey said.
Fourth time was the charm for Sussex Central’s William Bradford as he finally won in the Tractor Driving CDE.
“I finally did it. It took me four years to do it,” he said of his past efforts in the competition.
Smyrna’s Gabby Virdin and Jenna Scuse are headed for the National FFA Convention in October after their wetland efficiency project finished first in the Environmental Science Division in the AgriScience Fair Display competition. The competition is for individuals or two-person teams to model their research and scientific displays at the fair. Virdin said she spent a lot of long summer days working on the project but it was worth it.
A few Smyrna teachers were honored including animal science teacher Keith Shane, who was given the State Teacher Mentor Award. Lake Forest High School agriscience teacher Alison Scott received the “Turn the Key” Young Teacher Award for Delaware.
Page 2 of 2 - The Middletown High School FFA even got in on the prizes when Ryan VanSant was given the State Star Greenhand Award as the top first-year FFA student in the state.
VanSant was shocked to win the award but excited at the same time.
“I’m really happy because of all the hard work I put into it,” VanSant said.
Email Jennifer Dailey at email@example.com.