An­i­mals part of home­com­ing at Pine Grove Area

The Republican Herald - - FRONT PAGE - by Vicki Ter­williger STAFF WRITER

PINE GROVE — A chicken named Waf­fles strut­ted into the role of agri­cul­ture am­bas­sador Fri­day at home­com­ing fes­tiv­i­ties at Pine Grove Area School Dis­trict.

Waf­fles, a brown sex link breed chicken, owned by Mor­gan Flick, was among the an­i­mals brought to the dis­trict cam­pus for the first-ever live­stock ex­hi­bi­tion.

Pine Grove Fu­ture Farm­ers of Amer­ica ad­viser and agri­cul­ture teacher Sarah Gaffney co­or­di­nated the live­stock show.

FFA mem­bers brought their sheep, calves, pigs, pygmy goats, rab­bits, ducks and chick­ens to share with their peers at the high school, as well as ele­men­tary stu­dents who were in­vited to at­tend the ex­hi­bi­tion. Stu­dents could com­pete in an an­i­mal quiz bowl and earn prizes.

“It’s crazy how many peo­ple are afraid of chick­ens. I think it’s their feet,” Flick, a ju­nior from Pine Grove, said.

“Here, you hold her just like a baby,” she said, as she passed Waf­fles to Rachel Rossi, a fresh­man. Rossi’s also an FFA mem­ber.

“They’re cool an­i­mals,” Rossi said. Rossi thought the ex­hi­bi­tion was a good way to in­tro­duce the an­i­mals to the pub­lic and boost in­ter­est in the agri­cul­ture pro­gram.

“Even though you’re not from a farm, you can still be in FFA,” Rossi said.

Some of the quiz bowl ques­tions the FFA stu­dents drafted were: “What is the white patch on the pigs called?” “What breeds are the calves in this pen?” “What items can be made from sheep’s wool?” and “What’s the dif­fer­ence be­tween mal­lards and rouens?”

As mem­bers of the FFA, it’s our job to ed­u­cate and get them in­formed about where their food comes from and why agri­cul­ture is so im­por­tant,” Flick said.

Along with Flick, an FFA stu­dent ad­viser, other FFA of­fi­cers — Tay­lor Trot­ter, chap­lain, and Katie Mease, sec­re­tary — as­sisted in pre­par­ing the grounds near the sta­dium for the ex­hi­bi­tion. They ar­rived at 6:30 a.m. Fri­day to set up the cages, straw bed­ding and tents. The cages were bor­rowed from the Schuylkill County Fair.

Mease, a Pine Grove se­nior, brought the rouens. She ex­plained the dif­fer­ence be­tween the rouens and the mal­lards are that rouens are ducks that are flight­less and are a bit heftier than the mal­lards.

Sopho­more Chase Betz joined some of the calves in their straw bed­ding and spent time pet­ting them.

“They like to play and cud­dle, al­most like a dog,” Betz said. Betz said he has a few chick­ens at home and raises fish.

Fel­low sopho­more Alli But­ler, Pine Grove, said she works part time at Wind­mill Farm in Pine Grove. The brown swiss calf brought to the show Fri­day, named Amelia, was from her em­ployer, she said. But­ler also raises dairy beef and en­ters an­i­mals in the county fair.

“I think it’s awe­some to show the com­mu­nity how fun agri­cul­ture can be and where their food comes from,” But­ler said.

The home­com­ing ac­tiv­i­ties be­gan af­ter four morn­ing pe­ri­ods of in­struc­tion. The af­ter­noon cel­e­bra­tion in­cluded a Pow­der Puff foot­ball game, vol­ley­ball, bounce house ad­ven­ture course, a car show, a home­com­ing kings’ tal­ent show, an evening spaghetti din­ner for stu­dents en­rolled in ex­tracur­ric­u­lar ac­tiv­i­ties and a home­com­ing dance. The high school band and cheer­lead­ers of­fered a pep rally at the ele­men­tary school.

All sports teams are slated to play to­day, ac­cord­ing to Michael Jan­i­celli, high school prin­ci­pal. Jan­i­celli cred­ited his staff and the stu­dent or­ga­ni­za­tions for co­or­di­nat­ing the home­com­ing fes­tiv­i­ties.

“I think it’s awe­some to show the com­mu­nity how fun agri­cul­ture can be and where their food comes from.” alli But­ler pine grove area sopho­more


Pine Grove Fu­ture Farm­ers of Amer­ica stu­dent Mor­gan Flick, right, talks about her chicken, Waf­fles, with fel­low stu­dent Kyra Wil­liams look­ing on Fri­day dur­ing Pine Grove’s home­com­ing event at Pine Grove Area High School. This is the first year the FFA...

Pine Grove stu­dents An­thony Reilly, left, and Katelyn Wooster pet sheep that the Pine Grove FFA brought to Pine Grove Area High School dur­ing their home­com­ing event.

DaviD mcKeown / StaFF pho­tog­ra­pher

A sheep climbs up onto the en­clo­sure Fri­day dur­ing Pine Grove Area’s home­com­ing event at Pine Grove Area High School. This is the first year the FFA stu­dent had a live­stock ex­hi­bi­tion at their home­com­ing event.

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