CHS hosts Area XI FFA Banquet

Wednesday, March 5, 2014
Cassville High School FFA members (in the FFA jackets), from left, Will Edmondson, Keenan Roller, Parker Dunker and Austin McClintock, fill their plates with barbecue beef, corn and dinner rolls at the Area XI Banquet, hosted by Cassville High School on Feb. 25. There were 16 schools in attendance, bringing about 600 visitors to the school. Kyle Troutman/

The Cassville High School Future Farmers of America (FFA) club hosted 16 schools and about 550 visitors for the Area XI Awards Banquet on Feb. 25.

The banquet, held annually, recognizes FFA members who earn proficiency awards and degrees, many of whom were from schools in Barry County.

Schools in attendance included: Cassville, Exeter, Southwest, Wheaton, Purdy, Monett, Aurora, Diamond, East Newton, McDonald County, Mount Vernon, Neosho, Pierce City, Sarcoxie, Seneca and Verona.

Taner Wright, a senior at Cassville High School, smiles after accepting his first-place proficiency award in the category of home and/or community development. Wright's project involved him doing yard work and maintenance that improved the appearance of a local individual's properties Kyle Troutman/

The banquet began with introductions from area officers, including Vice President Yia Yang, of Wheaton, and Chaplain Jayse Henderson, of Purdy. Following a barbecue dinner, Jim Bellis, assistant head of the Darr School of Agriculture at Missouri State University, spoke to the students and parents in attendance.

Area FFA degrees were then awarded. Cassville students receiving FFA degrees included: Ashley Cousins, Kasey Durm, Miranda Fulford, Brandon Haase, Stussy Stephenson and Deidre Westpheling. Billie Belt, of Exeter, received an FFA degree. Southwest students receiving FFA degrees included: Colton Pippin, Lauren Mitchell, John Mulkey and Corey Stanley. Wheaton students receiving FFA degrees included: Justin Beck, Chase Cantwell, Yesenia Castro, Kimberly Day, Bryce England, Brittany Harman, John Kimbrough, Jared Litchy, Kayla Mason, Logan Moore, Aracely Nunez, Kathryn Parker, Tyler Pendergraft, Tylar Pruitt, Joseph Robbins and Trevis Schoelzel. Purdy students receiving FFA degrees included: Jayse Henderson, Billie House, Robby Moody and Shelby Thomas. And, Monett students receiving FFA degrees included: Devon Blevins, Jessica Hartman, Ryan Mareth, Taylor Worm and Iris Wormington.

Proficiency awards were handed out in multiple categories, each of which highlight a specific aspect of agriculture. There were 44 categories, with first, second and third place awards given in all but 13. Aurora racked up the most awards with 32, followed by Pierce City with 25, Seneca with 16, Sarcoxie with nine, Mount Vernon with eight, McDonald County with six and Wheaton with five. Cassville and Diamond each had four awards. East Newton earned three, and Monett and Neosho each had two. Southwest earned one award.

Cassville winners included: Westpheling, who won first place in Ag. sales; graduate Chase Yarnall, who won first place in diversified Ag.; Taner Wright, who won first place in home and/or community development; and Drew Henbest, who won third place in beef production entrepreneurship.

Wheaton winners included: Hii Yang, who won first place in agriculture communications; Riley Brattin, who won first place in forage production; Toby Banks, who won first place in poultry production; and Matt Hickman, who won second place in turf grass management and third place in landscape management.

Six Cassville FFA members earned their FFA degrees on Feb. 25. This pictured include,front row, from left: Miranda Fulford, Kasey Durm and Ashley Cousins. Back row: Brandon Haase, Stussy Stephenson, Taner Wright and Deidre Westpheling. Not pictured are Chase Yarnall and Drew Henbest. .Contributed photo

Southwest's Jerri Lynn Henry took first place in outdoor recreation, and Monett's Hayley Long earned second place in poultry production, and in diversified livestock production.