The COVID-19 virus caused the annual Cardington-Lincoln FFA Banquet and Awards Ceremony usually held in April, to be rescheduled to July 20 where it was held on the high school parking lot.
The Cardington FFA officer team began planning after the original cancellation, how they could engage their members from a distance and move the banquet from April to July with hopes that more information would be available on how they could gather safely with eventual plans for the 2020 Cardington FFA Drive—In banquet finalized.
There were nearly 100 vehicles filled with members, friends and family filing into the school’s parking lot where the committee had set up a stage on a flatbed trailer provided by Etgen Farms, Ashley.
Backstage there was a photo area and five members in charge of the photography so parents could safely enjoy the banquet from their vehicles. Two members were stationed near each set of stairs to sanitize hands as people entered and exited the stage.
All members wore masks while outside of their vehicles and they stood on orange markers six feet apart while they were lined up to go onto the stage. Popcorn, water, masks and programs were given through car windows as guests arrived and the sound system tied through a radio transmitter on 93.1 so guests could hear through the speaker system on their car radios.
Following guidelines provided by the state, members, family, friends, supporters and community members were able to gather for two hours while celebrating the students with an old school drive in movie feel.
Due to the position of the sun, the chapter was unable to play the year-in review slide show, 80th anniversary video, officer run -in video or the senior slide show. These were posted on the FFA Facebook page the next day so they could be enjoyed virtually.
Awards presented included the Star Greenhand Member: Marcella Rollins (Freshman); Star Chapter Farmer: Brooke Clapham (September); Most Outstanding Junior: Tess Ruehrmund; Outstanding Senior: Liam Warren; High Point Member: Tess Ruehrmund; Reserve High Point Member: Isabelle Crum.
The 110 Percent Award sponsored by Ag Credit: Hazel Jolliff; McGinnis Family Scholarship: Grace Struck; FFA Alumni Scholarship; Emily Pearl and Liam Warren; Farm Association Scholarship: Liam Warren and Emma Burchett.
Receiving Honorary Degrees were Troy Ruehrmund, Janet Morman, Wes Wigton and Duane Straley.
Other high lights of the evening included the recognition of the senior members as they hung up their FFA jackets for the final time and introduction of the new leaders who make up the 2020-2021 Officer Team which was first announced via a video on social media in the spring.
The chapter thanks John Brehm for helping arrange and operate the sound system and Jodie Denney, who helped make popcorn.