FFA Chapters Qualify for Farm Safety Quiz Bowl Championships

Posted on: April 27, 2023   |   Category: News Releases

By Lura Roti

Four FFA Chapters qualified for the Farmers Union Farm Safety Quiz Bowl Championships during the 2023 State FFA Convention. The qualifying FFA Chapters are Gettysburg, Selby Area, Platte-Geddes and Wolsey-Wessington.

The four teams qualified to compete in the Quiz Bowl Championships held during Farmers Union Day at the South Dakota State Fair, September 2. The state’s largest agricultural organization hosts this competition annually to encourage farm safety.

“Farm Safety is a focus of all our youth educational programming because so many South Dakota youth either live on a farm, work on a farm or enjoy time on friend’s farms,” explained Doug Sombke, President of South Dakota Farmers Union. “Farms and ranches are some of the best places to raise children, but they are also work zones where accidents can and do happen.”

Gettysburg FFA Advisor Mercedes Lemke agrees.

“In rural South Dakota, even town kids come in contact with tractors, trailers, grain bins and livestock. This contest is a great way to get students to think about safety,” Lemke said.

Cayla Graves, the Platte-Geddes FFA Advisor added that she appreciates the contest because it motivates students to engage with this serious topic in a way that is fun. “Kids like competition and they like a challenge,” Graves said. “If I just assign a reading about PTO or grain bin safety, the likelihood that the students will remember what they read is not as great as if they have to think about the answer in a quiz bowl.”

Platte-Geddes FFA Chapter President Brooklyn Nepodal agrees. “he contest is a fun way to incorporate farm safety. We were all focused and ready to answer questions,” said Nepodal, who lives on her family’s farm northwest of Platte. “Farm safety is extremely important. My grandpa actually gives us demonstrations on how to be safe around our family farm.”

A senior with plans to pursue a degree in pharmacy at South Dakota State University, Nepodal said she appreciates the hands-on learning aspect of Farmers Union Farm Safety Quiz Bowl and other opportunities FFA has provided to her over the years.

“FFA has completely changed my life,” Nepodal said. “It has given me the opportunity to be a leader and work on my public speaking skills. And I am going to be a pharmacist because my FFA Advisor encouraged me to look into it.”

Over the next few months, Nepodal said she and her teammates plan on making some time to study farm safety so they are prepared for the State Fair Championship. The winning team receives a cash prize.

In addition to Nepodal, her teammates include Harper Kirsch, Natalie Severson and Skylar Hanten; Gettysburg FFA team members are: Tanner Eide, Trace Genzler, Alex Tanner and Owen Rausch; Selby Area FFA team members are: Wayde Grage, Trevor Gill, Camden Hirsch and Keaton Fiedler and Wolsey-Wessington FFA team members are: Kelsie Roberts, Ty Olson, Harley Roberts and Keaton Zomer.