CARDINGTON — Forty five junior and senior members of the Cardington FFA, Chapter along with 10 chaperones, traveled to Chicago on March 22 where they spent three days.
Some of the highlights of their trip included a stop along the way at the Albanese Candy Factory in Indiana. Arriving in Chicago the group stayed at the Holiday Inn in LaGrange.
Later that evening they attended the Blue Man Group, a unique theatrical performance. Because the members and chaperones were seated close to the action in what was termed the “Splash Zone,” they were given waterproof ponchos.
A visit to the Chicago School of Agriculture was on tap the next day. This is a unique facility, where everyone is an FFA member and have mandatory classes just for the furtherance in agricultural education. The tour guides of the school were students who attend there and gave personal accounts of it and what it means to them.
Later the chapter members headed to Willis Tower, formerly known as the Sears Tower, and they rode an elevator to the Skydeck, 103 stories in the air. They hung over the city in a glass box, known as the Skybox.
The next stop was a watery experience in Shedd’s Aquarium where they viewed fish, amphibians, reptiles and water dwelling mammals and birds and they saw turtles from the Amazon River, cephalopods from the Pacific Ocean and flightless friends, the penguins.
The local Chinese culture hub, Chinatown, was on the visitors’ list where they shopped at authentic Chinese butcher shops, etc.
A shopping trip to the Water Tower Mall, an eight story tall mall in downtown Chicago was next on their itinerary followed by a visit to the top of the John Hancock building to see what the city looks like at night. They experienced a machine that tilts the viewer 45 degrees over the city to give a closer look.
Day three began with a visit to Fair Oaks Farm, an agri-tourism facility where the students viewed all the steps in the production of milk on this farm with more than 30,000 head of cattle.
They viewed the farrow to finish side of this facility where they saw the life of a pig from when it is born to the point right before it becomes bacon. Following a visit to the house ice cream parlor and gift shop, the group returned home late Saturday.