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Stellar AgFest For Escalon FFA Members
Kassidy Burriss shown with her FFA Reserve Champion Yorkshire Market Hog.

San Joaquin County AgFest is a Junior Show and Auction that is dedicated to FFA and 4-H members and their vocational projects. At AgFest, FFA and 4-H members from around the county can exhibit many projects including beef, swine, goats, sheep, rabbits, ag mechanics as well as other horticulture and floriculture still exhibits.

With the challenges that came from COVID-19, this year’s AgFest festivities could not go on as planned, so the AgFest Board came up with a solution. This year, they hosted an online show, where exhibitors sent in videos of their animals to be judged and placed. They took it a step further, and committed to offering as much as a full AgFest as possible, so rather than solely focus on market animals, they included the breeding show, still exhibits, dog obedience, and offered replacement activities for showmanship. AgFest concluded with an online sale where exhibitors sold their market animals and dairy replacement heifers via the online sale platform, Stock Show Auctions.

The Escalon FFA chapter had a total of 40 exhibitors who participated in AgFest, which included nine sheep, 17 goats, five beef cattle, one dairy animal, 10 swine, and two ag mechanics projects. All members did an outstanding job, placing respectably in their classes. Following are a few highlights.

In the market swine show, Christopher Vidales exhibited the FFA Hampshire Champion, Kassidy Burriss had the FFA Yorkshire Reserve Champion, and Jilleen Sanders had the FFA Cross Reserve Champion. In the market goat show, Danny Bava exhibited the FFA Reserve Champion.

In the beef cattle show, Molly Terpstra had the FFA Reserve Champion Market Steer. She also showed in the breeding show, and was awarded Supreme Champion Bull, Reserve Supreme Champion Female, Champion English Bull, Champion English Female, Supreme Champion Cow/Calf Pair, and Reserve Champion Crossbred Female.

There were two showmanship activities for exhibitors. In the essay contest, Gracie Bracco placed first in the grade 9-10 division. Emma Bracco placed second in the grade 11-12 division and her essay went on to be awarded Reserve FFA Champion. In the showmanship video contest, members submitted a three-minute video showing off their showmanship skills and then they gave a brief speech answering a prompt for their grade. Danny Bava was first in goats and first in the advanced divisions and first overall, Evan Bava placed third in the advanced goat division, and Gianna Bava was first in Greenhand goat showmanship. In the sheep division, Molly Terpstra was first in Greenhand showmanship and second overall.

In the Agricultural Mechanics contest, Dillan Booth received a first place award for his deer hitch hanger in one of the large project categories. That project went on to be selected as the second place overall project in ag mechanics large projects contest. Additionally, Zack Hearn placed second in the medium welding projects category.

The chapter would like to extend its appreciation to San Joaquin AgFest for a great show. It was the hard work and support of many volunteers and generosity of supporters and donors who made this possible. The chapter would also like to congratulate all of its participants for all of their efforts on a job well done.

Shown, Chris Vidales posing with his FFA Champion Hampshire Market Hog.
Jilleen Sanders takes a quick photo with her FFA Reserve Champion Crossbred Market Hog.