David City FFA land judging team digs up challenges at Districts

Becca Meusch

On Oct. 12, the David City FFA Chapter sent their land judging team to Districts held near Lake Wanahoo in Wahoo.

David City High School in joint with Aquinas High School form the David City FFA Chapter. This year they sent 14 land judgers to the District competition. No competitors qualified for State this year, but the Chapter had three ribbon recipients.

“We have a large number of underclassmen and have been trying to teach them the ropes and the purpose behind the contest in a logical manner,” FFA Adviser Jenny Kocian said. “We have been using some of the upperclassmen more to share some of the information to tackle everybody’s schedules.”

Practices started in mid-September and consisted of mostly underclassmen, Kocian said. She said she utilized the upperclassmen this year to help teach the newcomers, two of which were past State qualifiers in the contest.

Land judging is always near this area, so the soil types are consistent every year for Districts, which makes it easier to prepare for the contest, Kocian said.  

“It’s all really based on a judge’s interpretation of some things that maybe are a little trivial at times,” Kocian said. “As far as putting everything together and understanding the contest, that will show that day.”

Individual ribbon winners included freshman Spencer Allen and junior Caeden Pierce with white ribbons, and senior Rebecca Meusch with a red ribbon. The team of junior Jake Seibert, seniors Meusch and Ryan Worm, and junior Aquinas member, Tyler Vavrina, just missed out on a ribbon as the highest placing team from the Chapter.

“The hardest part of the contest this year was deciding the land classes. Personally for me the hardest part about that decision was that some of the rotations seemed to have more than one land class that would fit the profile,” Pierce said.

This year, the sites had been set up for a collegiate level contest the following day, which was something that isn’t seen much, Kocian said.

“The contest was more challenging with higher level application practices that you would typically see at the State level,” Kocian said. “Staking teams is a challenge not knowing who will perform towards the top on that given day.”

Overall, the land judging teams will only be losing two seniors and the rest are looking forward to applying their experiences and knowledge in the following years hopefully with a more positive outcome, Pierce said.