August 23, 2022
Each year the traffic flows into the Farm Progress Show grounds during its three days. Getting more than 20,000 vehicles in and out per day can be a challenge, but safety is the No. 1 goal for the Iowa State Patrol.
“We will have 35 officers helping get traffic moving safely and smoothly to the event,” says Sgt. Corey Champlin with the Iowa State Patrol. “We want everyone to realize the more aware they are about their surroundings, the better it will all go.”
The patrol works with surrounding agencies, Farm Progress Show representatives and the Iowa Department of Transportation to ensure all attendees get in and out of the show safely.
Champlin says the busiest time is the first two hours of the morning, when all of the exhibitors are trying to get to the show to staff their booths, and farmers are trying to get there to take in all the show has to offer.
“If you come early, be patient. Make sure you have your seat belt on, and your phone is not in your hand,” he adds.
Delays are expected in the early-morning traffic, as well as when everyone starts to leave in the evening. While it is easy to grab your phone to pass the time in traffic, he warns this is often when accidents and fender benders happen — which will slow down traffic even more.
Close to the showgrounds is the United Community School, and Champlin says to take extra caution in that area, when school buses and traffic are turning in and out of the school grounds. An officer will be on hand to help students and staff get in and out safely.
“We are there to help get drivers where they need to go,” he says, adding that drivers need to continue in the direction they’re sent to reach their destination.
Detour and rerouting
North of the Farm Progress Show grounds on Highway 17, the bridge over the railroad tracks will not be completed by the time of the show. The detour around that area is well-marked and easy to follow.
Champlin says there will be an extra lane of traffic into the grounds, which will also be well marked for travelers. Digital signs will provide any last-minute information for drivers.
“We suggest listening to local radio stations [WHO-AM radio] for traffic updates, especially in the morning hours, and visiting the website to check for any extra information before traveling to the show,” Champlin says.
Traffic updates are expected on WHO-AM radio around 6:30 a.m. and 8 a.m., and again in the late afternoon to get everyone in and out of the show quickly and safely.
“If weather permits, we will have one of our aircraft monitoring traffic from above,” he says. “That way we can make necessary adjustments more quickly to help traffic flow.”
Parking will be marked with signs, and officers will help direct attendees into the proper areas from all directions.
For more information regarding traffic and parking, visit FarmProgressShow.com.
About the Author(s)
Editor, Wallaces Farmer
Jennifer lives on a farm near Redfield, Iowa, where she runs a small cow-calf operation with her family. A 20-plus year ag journalism veteran, Jennifer has covered a wide range of agriculture issues. A graduate of Iowa State University, she has worked for local daily papers and other agriculture publishers. She came to Wallaces Farmer from the Iowa Cattlemen’s Association. She enjoys writing, managing cattle, and hearing and telling farmer stories.
Jennifer has two children. Kassidy, 21, attends Black Hawk East College, but will transfer in the fall to Oklahoma State University. Son, Klayton, attends Panorama High School where he excels in academics, sports, FFA and 4-H.
“My favorite part of being an ag journalist is to tell the story of the farmer and rancher,” she says. “The farmer and rancher do the work to make the food, fiber and fuel for everyone. I want to use our online presence to broaden that message to those off the farm.”
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