MACOMB, Ill. — The 2017 Agriculture Mechanization (Ag Mech) Club at Western Illinois University will host its 47th annual Farm Expo Saturday–Sunday, Feb. 11-12 in Western Hall.
The expo will run from 9 a.m.-5 p.m. Saturday and 10 a.m.-4 p.m. Sunday. The show is open free to the public and free parking is available in Q-Lot.
The “Ag Mech Show” began in 1970 and has grown into the largest student-run agriculture show in the United States. Club President Drew Beeler, a senior engineering major from Warsaw, IL, said the Ag Mech Club is made up of about 20 members and the show is managed by an executive board of five students.
The 2017 keynote address will be delivered by Cliff Becker, a WIU alumnus who is the vice president of livestock at Farm Journal Media. Becker, who received his bachelor’s degree from Western in agriculture in 1984, will speak at 10:30 a.m. Saturday in Western Hall.
This year’s Farm Expo will again include “Tot-Rod Pedal Pulls,” beginning at noon Sunday, as well as displays of farm tractors and machinery, ag sales and service companies, ag management companies, emerging ag technology, livestock supplies, crop supplies, conservation, ag structures and a concession stand by WIU’s Alpha Gamma Sigma fraternity. The second floor of the show will feature a farm toy show and crafts and child IDs will be made in the Hall of Fame Room of Western Hall.
Beeler said the main floor of this year’s show will include about 160 booths for 90 vendors, including the addition of new vendors that will bring in new agriculture technologies and manufacturing opportunities.
Ag Mech Club Advisor Assistant Professor Dan Atherton said this year’s event will also include a raffle of two bags sets with the club’s logo on them and a student-made garden planter.
The weekend’s events will also include the fourth annual WIU School of Agriculture Alumni Social will be held from 2-4 p.m. Saturday, Feb. 11 at the University Union Lamoine Room. School of Ag Director Andy Baker will deliver updates from the school at 2:30 p.m.
The social is open to WIU “Aggie” alumni, current and retired faculty and students. Familes are also welcome to attend. RSVPs can be made at (309) 298-1080 or emailed to DC-Pestle1@wiu.edu.
— WIU News
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