The Mineral Point Chapter of the Future Farmers of America held its 92nd annual awards ceremony Tuesday, May 11 in the high school gym under the leadership of Advisor Mike Robinson.

A video from the event is available here:

A photo album is here:

Awards were presented as follows:

Discovery Degree

The FFA Discovery Degree is awarded to 8th grade FFA members who have successfully completed the 8th grade agriculture course, have attended FFA meetings, and have shown interest in pursuing the FFA in the coming high school years.

Recipients include: Matthew Aurit, Lillianna Berget, Hallie Brant, Roen Carey, Isabelle Coogan, Isabella Dannenberg, Tucker Dannenberg, Ethan Edge, Michael Edgington, Payton Heins, Joss James, Jerrie Jo Johnson, Emma Kitelinger, Ella Kroll, Laci Lindsey, Jarvie Nafzger, Atley Potterton, Anna Robinson, Ellen Robinson, Luke Schubert, Claire Steffes, Jaxson Wendhausen, and Jillian Wirsbinsky.

Greenhand Degree

The Greenhand Degree is the first degree of membership earned in high school in the FFA. To earn a Greenhand Degree, you must have satisfactorily planned or started a SAE (Supervised Agricultural Experience), have learned and be able to explain the meaning of the FFA Creed, know the FFA Motto, know the duties and responsibilities of FFA members, and have an understanding of the aims and purposes of the FFA.

Recipients include: Rori Bossert, Macclain Busser, Brooklyn Casper, Madisyn Heim, Estella James, Lexi Kinch, Quinten Kite, EricaRose Lease, Ellery Massey, and Regan Schuette.

Chapter Degree

The Chapter FFA Degree is the second degree of high school membership for an FFA member. One must have received the Greenhand Degree, have a SAE, have knowledge of the chapter’s program of activities, participated in at least three local activities, and demonstrate progress in their SAE area.

Recipients include: Mackenzie Aurit, Graham Fitzsimmons, Ella Fox, Jaiden Galle, Quenten Gunderson, Bo Hanson, Carson Kroll, Brody Lee, Teagan McConnell, Cooper Palzkill, Joseph Robinson, AJ Rury, Regan Suddeth, Lucas Sullivan, James Tibbits, Olivia Wendhausen, and Kennedy Wenger.

Blue and Gold Award

The Blue and Gold Award is presented to FFA members in their third year of high school FFA membership. One must have received the Chapter FFA Degree, have a well established SAE, have participated in and helped organize the chapter’s program of activities, and demonstrate growth in their SAE.

Recipients include: Colbi Carey, Laurianna Dannenberg, Grace Engels, Emily Graber, Landon Hermanson, Estelle Janetka, Ross Lindsey, Ollie Michell, Trapper Nafzger, Faith Pilling, Blake Radtke, Brett Roberts, Emma Steffes, and Keigan Yager.

Four-Year Member Award

Being a part of the Mineral Point FFA for four years of high school is an outstanding accomplishment for a member. These members have put in many hours and have participated in many events over the past four years of high school.

Recipients include: Mitchell Aurit, Alexis Berget, Emily Cody, Kane Gunderson, Sira James, Tatum Kite, Ivy Lawinger, Haily Murphy, Daniel Nordstrom, Olivia Olson, Rebecka Orsburn, Sadie Owens, Hannah Smith, Rita Wilson, and Chandler Workman.

State FFA Degree

The State FFA Degree is the highest degree the state association can bestow. The member must have taken two years of agricultural education and been an active member for two years. The member must have invested $2500 or worked 1500 hours in their SAE area and have completed their State FFA Degree application and have been accepted at the State level. The following will receive their State Degree at the State Convention: Hannah Smith.

American Degree

The American FFA Degree is the highest degree that an FFA member can receive. There are many qualifications that must be met in order for an FFA member to receive this degree. The member must have been an active FFA member for three years and completed three years of agricultural education classes. The member must have graduated from high school, earned and invested $7500 or earned $1500 and worked 2250 hours in their SAE area. The following will be recognized at the National FFA Convention this fall: Morgan Vondra.

District Speaking Contest

Mineral Point hosted the virtual District Speaking Contest.

In the Creed Contest, Ella James placed 4th and Regan Schuette placed 5th. The Creed Contest involves reciting the FFA Creed from memory and answering a series of questions about the Creed.

Joey Robinson placed 2nd in The FFA Employment Skills contest. Joey moved on to the Sectional Contest. The Employment Skills Contest is a very practical contest that has the FFA member interview for an agricultural related job, as well as submit a resume, cover letter, and job description.

In Extemporaneous Speaking, Daniel Nordstrom placed 1st and Rita Wilson placed 2nd; both moved on to sectional competition.  The Extemporaneous contest consists of a student drawing an agricultural related topic and in 30 minutes preparing a 4-6 minute speech on that topic.

The 8th grade quiz bowlers that competed were Annie Robinson, Ellie Robinson, Laci Lindsey, Payton Heins, and Izzy Dannenberg. This team placed 2nd and qualified to move on to sectionals.  In this contest 8th grade FFA members compete against teams from other schools to answer questions about FFA facts.  It is the first speaking competition open to them in their FFA career. 

In Prepared Speaking, Ellie Janetka placed 1st and qualified to move on to sectionals.  In the Prepared contest, FFA members memorize an agricultural related speech of 6-8 minutes and present it to a panel of judges.

Sectional Speaking Contest

The Mineral Point FFA competed in the Sectional speaking contest hosted virtually by River Ridge. 

In Extemporaneous Speaking, Rita Wilson placed 1st and will be moving on to State competition. Daniel Nordstrom placed 2nd.

The Quiz Bowl team of Annie Robinson, Ellie Robinson, Payton Heins, Izzy Dannenberg, and Laci Lindsey placed 2nd.

Prepared speaker Ellie Janetka placed 3rd.

In Employment Skills, Joey Robinson placed 5th.

Alumni Judging Contest

Every year, the Mineral Point FFA Alumni holds an annual judging contest at local farms to help prepare the FFA members for the spring Career Development Events contests. This year the group attended Mike and Amy Robinson’s farm for judging beef, sheep and goats, Tibbits Show Pigs and Todd and Angie Schmitz for hogs, and Cory Palzkill family farm for judging dairy cows.

This year’s runner up in the high school division was Emma Steffes with the winner being Jimmy Tibbits. This year’s runner up in the 8th grade division was Payton Heins with Ellie Robinson being the champion.

Chapter Proficiency Awards

There were 11 different FFA Proficiency Awards applied for at the State level, which are based on their Supervised Agriculture Experience.  They are given a ranking of bronze, silver, or gold on the State level.  With each ranking, the students get a monetary amount from the local chapter of $20, $30 or $50.  All gold rated proficiencies are awarded at the State FFA Convention. Also this year at the State level is a ranking of top five finalists in the State which means they will not find out their final ranking of 1-5 in the State until on stage at the State FFA Convention.  

Daniel Nordstrom is a Top 5 Finalist and received a gold rating in Turf Grass Management.  This is Daniel’s third year of making the Top Five Finalists. Daniel’s SAE is based on his lawn mowing business.  Daniel and his brother operate Nordstrom Lawn Care and service over 34 lawns in the summer.  Daniel has invested money he has made back into his business to help it grow and better service his customers. 

Carson Kroll is a Top 5 Finalist and received a gold rating in Turf Grass Management.  Carson’s proficiency is based on his work at the Dodge-Point Country Club.  Carson has many job responsibilities which include preparing bunkers, moving tees, mowing fairways and roughs, trimming and maintenance of equipment. 

Ross Lindsey received a gold rating and placed 13th in Beef Production.  Ross’ SAE is based on showing beef steers at all levels of competition.  Ross becomes more involved and learns more each year about showing steers.  One of Ross’ highlights from showing cattle is having the Champion market steer at the Iowa County Fair.  

Morgan Vondra received a gold rating and placed 22nd in Diversified Livestock Production.  In this proficiency, Morgan was able to combine her two livestock enterprises of raising show pigs and shorthorn cattle to compete in Diversified Livestock Production. 

Laurianna Dannenberg received a gold rating and placed 20 in Diversified Livestock Production.  Laurianna’s SAE is based on her show goats, miniature horses, and chicken operation.  Laurainna has many responsibilities in raising her animals and spends many hours training her horses for competition. 

Ella James received a silver rating in Dairy Production.  Ella’s SAE is based on raising and showing dairy cattle at all levels of competition.   Ella has shown at district shows, state fair, and county fair.  Ella enjoys working with her calves and taking care of them throughout the year. 

Trapper Nafzger placed 9th in Dairy Production and received a gold rating at the State level.  Trapper’s SAE is based on raising and showing his own herd of dairy cows.  Trapper performs many duties, which include milking and feeding his cow herd, caring for the calves, and breeding decisions.  He is also involved in showing his cattle at district, county, and state shows.  

Joey Robinson is a Top Five Finalist in Goat Production and received a gold rating.  Joey’s SAE is based on raising and showing Boer goats.  Joey raises his own Boer goats to show and sell to other exhibitors to be competitive at all levels.  One of Joey’s accomplishments was raising and showing the champion market wether goat and reserve market breeding doe at the 2019 Wisconsin State Fair. 

Joey Robinson is a Top Five Finalist in Sheep Production and received a gold rating.  Joey’s SAE is based on raising and showing sheep.  Joey raises his own purebred southdown and commercial sheep for showing at all levels of competition.  Joey produced and showed the 2019 Wisconsin State Fair Champion Southdown Ewe and the 2018 Wisconsin State Fair Reserve Champion Southdown Ewe. 

Joey Robinson placed 8th in Beef Production and received a gold rating.  Joey’s SAE is based on raising and showing beef cattle.  Joey raises purebred Angus, Red Angus, and commercial cattle.  Joey has shown at all levels of competition and has expanded his beef operation into selling quality bulls to other beef producers.  

Joey Robinson placed 15th in Diversified Livestock Production and received a gold rating.  Joey’s diversified proficiency area allowed him to combine his goats, sheep, and beef cattle SAE’s into one area. 

Fruit Sale

The FFA had another successful fruit sale. Combining with Skills USA, over $33,000 worth of fruit and locally produced products were sold. 

This year’s top FFA salesperson is Joey Robinson with $2678, second in sales went to Graham Fitzsimmons with $2525, third in sales went to Ross Lindsey $2142, fourth in sales went to Annie Robinson with $1031, and the fifth spot in sales went to Madisyn Heim with $1015.  The single season sale record still stands at $3899 by Dylan Burke.  

Cash Back Awards

There is a cash back award program where FFA members who raised over $400 in fruit sale fundraising get 5% back on their total sales.

Recipients include: Mackenzie Aurit, Brooklyn Casper, Michael Edgington, Graham Fitzsimmons, Jaiden Galle, Kane Gunderson, Bo Hanson, Payton Heins, Ella James, Carson Kroll, Ross Lindsey, Madisyn Heim, Teagan McConnell, Cooper Palzkill, Blake Radtke, Annie Robinson, Ellie Robinson, Joey Robinson, Luke Schubert, Hannah Smith, Emma Steffes, and Kennedy Wenger.

Career Development Events

Dairy Evaluation: Trapper Nafzger, Brooklyn Casper, Ella James 12th individually.

Vet Science: Team – 11th Joey Robinson, Brooklyn Casper, Kennedy Wenger, Mackenzie Aurit, Emma Steffes, Annie Robinson, and Ellie Robinson.

Horse Evaluation: Brett Roberts 6th individually.

Wildlife: Team – 24th Brett Roberts, Joey Robinson, Carson Kroll, Brody Lee, and Ellie Robinson.

Ag Mechanics: Joey Robinson 2nd individually and Jaiden Galle 52nd individually.

Livestock: Team – 1st at State and are National Qualifiers. Joey Robinson 5th individually, Annie Robinson 11th individually,  Payton Heins 30th individually, Jimmy Tibbits 31st individually.

Others competing in the livestock contest included Kennedy Wenger, Carson Kroll, Mackenzie Aurit, Ellie Robinson, Emma Steffes, Brooklyn Casper, and Jillian Wirsbinsky.

Star Discovery Award

The Star Discovery Award is to honor the outstanding 8th grade FFA member.  This award is based on the member’s involvement in FFA activities that are available to them as 8th grade members.  This year’s recipients have participated in quiz bowl, top five fruit sale, attended the virtual National FFA Convention, attended virtual leadership conference, participated in livestock CDE, vet science CDE, wildlife CDE, FFA week activities, alumni judging, and are always watering plants in the greenhouse.  They are always willing to help out with FFA activities and have a great start in the FFA.

Congratulations to Annie Robinson and Ellie Robinson.

Star Greenhand Award

The Star Greenhand Award is presented to a first year high school FFA member based on FFA participation, school activities, scholastic attainment, and evidence of beginning the Supervised Agriculture Experience program. This year’s Star Greenhand member has done a variety of activities which include: Dairy CDE competition, fruit sales, creed speaking contest, silver Dairy Proficiency Award, and FFA week events. She has a tremendous start in the FFA and will continue to display her leadership throughout her FFA career.

Congratulations to Estella James.

Star Chapter FFA Award

The Star Chapter FFA Award is presented to a second year high school member based on the activities they are involved in, which includes the areas of FFA participation, school activities, scholastic attainment and evidence of a Supervised Agriculture Experience program. This year’s recipient has participated and organized many of the FFA events from this year. Those activities include filling out four proficiency applications and rating gold in all four, as well as being a state finalist in two, participated in Employment Skills Contest and qualified for sectionals, attended virtual National Convention and virtual leadership conference, top fruit salesperson, 4 CDE contests of livestock, vet science, wildlife and ag. mechanics, cattleman’s dinner worker, alumni judging, FFA week activities, and helped with organizing many FFA activities. 

Congratulations to Joey Robinson.

Star Blue and Gold Award

The Star Blue and Gold Award is given to a third year high school FFA member based on involvement in activities which include FFA participation, school activities, scholastic attainment and evidence of a Supervised Agriculture Experience program. This year’s recipients have planned and been involved in many FFA activities this year and work to continue their growth in the FFA. Some of these activities include filling out gold rated proficiency applications in Dairy and Beef, attended virtual National Convention and leadership workshop, helped to organize and work the district FFA speaking contest, top five in fruit sales, served as officers for two years, alumni judging, competed in Dairy CDE, and helped with cattleman’s activities.

Congratulations to Ross Lindsey and Trapper Nafzger.

Dekalb Award

The Dekalb Agriculture accomplishment award is presented to a Senior FFA member who has an agriculture SAE and has shown leadership capabilities throughout their FFA career. The first award winner has competed in several speaking contests over their FFA career including creed and extemporaneous and has been a three time sectional qualifier.  He has been successful with his SAE of lawn mowing which he has received a gold rating and top 5 finalist 3 times. He has also been involved with helping at many other FFA activities. He has also attended sectional leadership conference and state FFA convention. Our other recipient has served as an FFA officer for two years and helped to organize many FFA activities.  He has attended sectional leadership workshop, national convention, state convention, Washington Leadership Conference, participated in speaking contests, helped to organize the virtual district speaking contest, and is always working to improve his leadership skills. 

Congratulations to Daniel Nordstrom and Chandler Workman.

FFA Scholarships

This year the FFA is presenting five scholarships from the FFA. The recipients of these scholarships have done a variety of FFA activities.  They helped to organize the FFA banquet, judging contests, donation auction, worked at donation auction, sold fruit, and have been excellent FFA members. They have competed in judging contests, speaking contest, leadership workshops, attended national convention, and many other FFA Activities.  They have spent many hours doing FFA activities as well as taking numerous ag classes.  These recipients are also involved in other school and community organizations.  The areas they are pursuing their education in are in auto body, physics, elementary education, cosmetology, and business. Congratulations to Ivy Lawinger $250, Rita Wilson $250, Sira James $250, Tatum Kite $250, and Chandler Workman $500.

FFA Alumni Scholarships

This year the FFA Alumni are able to present two scholarships. Both of these individuals have been involved in the FFA, both are pursuing a degree in agriculture, and both have worked agricultural jobs while in high school. Both have contributed to their school and community and both have a bright future ahead of them. One is pursuing a degree in ag power and the other in animal science.  Congratulations to Kane Gunderson $250 and Olivia Olson $250.

Don Hawkins Scholarship

Former Mineral Point Agriculture Teacher Don Hawkins set a bar very high for community service, love of the outdoors, and a passion for agriculture.  With this in mind, his family made a donation in his name to sponsor a scholarship to a Mineral Point FFA member.  As the scholarship committee looks at the applications, they consider the same attributes that Mr. Hawkins brought to our community in the member they select.  This year’s scholarship recipient has those qualities and is continuing their education by pursuing a degree in agricultural construction. This year’s winner has been a part of the oak savanna work at school, enjoys the outdoors, and has a passion for agriculture. Congratulations to Mitchell Aurit $500.

Retiring Officers

Chandler Workman, President

Trapper Nafzger, Vice President

Ross Lindsey, Secretary

Joey Robinson, Treasurer

Kennedy Wenger, Reporter

Carson Kroll, Sentinel

2021-22 Officers

Trapper Nafzger, President

Ross Lindsey, Vice President

Joey Robinson, Secretary

Kennedy Wenger, Treasurer

Carson Kroll, Reporter

Regan Suddeth, Sentinel