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There's something for everyone in FFA

By Janet Kubat Willette

Date Modified: 05/16/2013 10:54 AM

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MINNEAPOLIS – More than 3,000 FFA members, advisors and guests attended the 84th Minnesota FFA Convention last week.

Among them were about 40 students from Tracy Area FFA.

The students left Tracy around 10 a.m. April 28, arriving at the U of M campus around 2 p.m.

FFA members Mark DeSmith, Tanner Benson and Mason VanEssen, all seniors, had about an hour before they reported for band rehearsal.

DeSmith plays the euphonium, Benson percussion and VanEssen is first trumpet.

They joined with other FFA members from around the state to form the State FFA Band.

They auditioned to participate, sending in a tape of themselves playing a solo and a chromatic scale, for the instrumentalists.

They worked on seven pieces of music, rehearsing from 3 to 7:30 p.m. on April 28 and from 2 to 3 p.m. April 29.

They performed during the prelude to the annual Awards Program on April 29 and prior to the Fourth General Session on April 30.

Only about eight of their delegation remained at the U of M on the afternoon of April 30, the rest left that morning.

As the trio lounged on the green grass outside Mariucci Arena, they reflected on the state FFA convention.

Benson said he's amazed by the number of FFA members who attend the convention. It's amazing to see all the people who do the same thing they do, he said.

There's always something for everyone at the FFA convention, VanEssen said.

And DeSmith said he learned that five hours of sleep in 72 hours makes things interesting.