Wyoming FFA Foundation’s Blue Jeans Ball sees continued success in third yearWritten by Saige Albert
“This year was the biggest event we have had, both in terms of being a fundraiser as well as the number of people in attendance,” commented the Wyoming FFA Foundation Executive Director Jennifer Womack. “It was wonderful to see Casper, and others from around the state, turn out en force to support FFA at the 2012 Blue Jeans Ball.”
The event featured both a silent and live auctions, dinner, speaker and a dance and brought FFA supporters together from around the state.
“While the event serves as an annual fundraiser for the Wyoming FFA Foundation, the larger goal is showcasing FFA in the state and spreading the word about the outstanding youth who are involved in the program,” explained Womack. “We want to reconnect with former FFA members, FFA parents and others who are interested in joining us to bring as much opportunity as is possible to the Wyoming FFA program.”
Motivation for ag
This year’s speaker was National FFA Officer Jason Troendle, who emphasized the importance of continuing to build and grow throughout life.
“My time in Wyoming was awesome,” Troendle commented of the event. “There is a rural atmosphere, so it feels like a family. I feel so very welcome and so very blessed to be here. I am thankful for my time here and have enjoyed it.”
Troendle also mentioned that being a part of such a pivotal agriculture-based organization is important, and continues to grow in importance as the populations grow.
“Agriculture is important for three simple reasons: breakfast, lunch and dinner,” he explained. “Agriculture isn’t going to go away. By 2050 we will have 9 billion people on the planet. We will have to feed, clothe and fuel those 2 billion extra people.”
“We need young people who are excited and going to take on the challenge and bring on the new technology,” Troendle said.
Troendle will retire as a National FFA Officer during National FFA Convention on Oct. 24-27, but the work of the National and Wyoming FFA Association’s continue.
Wyoming FFA Foundation
The work of the Wyoming FFA Foundation will continue to build and grow, and Womack noted that the organization is very important to youth members in the state. They conduct fundraising events and continue to work to build partnerships for the benefit of FFA members.
“Some might wonder what the Wyoming FFA Foundation does with the funds raised at gatherings like the Blue Jeans Ball and the annual golf tournament we hold in conjunction with the Wyoming Natural Resource Foundation,” says Womack. “In the past year we’ve awarded $25,000 in college scholarships, granted $15,000 to FFA chapters to aid their community service efforts, spent over $20,000 buying learning materials for the state’s agricultural education classrooms, and bought FFA jackets for members who lack the funds to do so themselves and more.”
“It’s worth noting that there’s more to do and we thank those people and companies who are stepping forward to help us reach those goals,” she added.
While final tally is still coming in, Womack said this year’s event brought in nearly $18,000, and Foundation members have already begun planning for future events.
“Looking toward 2013, the Blue Jeans Ball will move to Johnson County with a tentative date of Sept. 21, 2013,” says Womack. “We hope to see FFA supporters turn out en force to rally behind this outstanding program and the growth opportunities it brings our state’s young people.”
Blue Jeans Ball sponsors
Casper – Wyoming FFA Foundation works to maintain relationships with businesses around the state. The following corporate and table sponsors support this year’s Blue Jeans Ball.
Encana Oil and Gas • Andreen Hunt Construction
USA Trucking • Wyoming Pork Producers Council
Cloud Peak Energy • Wyoming Livestock Roundup
Clear Creek Cattle Company, the Hendry Family
BP Energy • Cameco Resources
Triangle G Consulting • Elk Petroleum