There will be lots for visitors to see and do at the 2012 Wisconsin Farm Technology Days in Outagamie County near New London, according to show organizers.
This year's show will be held Tuesday, July 17, through Thursday, July 19, at Sugar Creek Farm LLC, owned by Mike Bruette and Jeff Handschke and Heideman Farms owned by John P. and John A. Heideman. Both farms are located just a few miles north of New London.
Visitors will not be allowed to walk through the dairy facilities at Sugar Creek Farm due to biosecurity concerns. However, they can take guided tours of the farm on trams.
"Hosting an event of this size requires a lot of cooperation from the host families and we are fortunate to have host families who have been really helpful in making this show come together," says 2012 Wisconsin Farm Technology Days Executive Secretary Kevin Jarek.
Again this year, diesel-powered generators will power Tent City.
See machinery firsthand
Jarek, who is also the Outagamie County Extension crops and soils agent, says the show will feature daily forage demonstrations. There are 250 acres of alfalfa and alfalfa-grass mix available for the demos. Demonstrations will begin at 10 a.m. each day and include:
* pull-type and self-propelled mower conditioners
* rakes, mergers and tedders
* pull-type and self-propelled forage harvesters
* large rectangular and large round balers
* blowers and silage baggers
* bale processors and wrappers
There will also be a tiling demonstration presented all three days.
"Farmers who are looking for flexible, low-cost ways to store forage will be able to see field demonstrations on baleage and wrappers to lower input costs," Jarek explains. "Watching these demonstrations will be time and money well spent."
The ride-and-drive area will be expanded this year. There will be skidloaders, telehandlers (all-terrain forklifts), tractors and sprayers available for visitors to ride and drive.
Show organizers are putting together a demonstration area in the Applied Technology Center.
"We'll have freestalls with different designs and different bedding structures," Jarek explains. "We'll also have a low-cost parlor set up for viewing, and Extension specialists will be available to answer questions."
Ag engineers will be on hand to address specific questions about freestall design, cow comfort and parlor design.
Volunteers make the show
More than 1,500 volunteers have worked countless hours during the past three years to prepare for the 2012 Outagamie County show.
"It's been a tremendous opportunity for almost everyone involved to learn about all the effort it takes to put on a show and work with other people. That's been the biggest benefit of hosting Wisconsin Farm Technology Days," says Jarek.
"Deb Barlament, is the volunteer coordinator. She is working with the committee chairs to coordinate the volunteers," Jarek says.
The Heidemans, Mike Bruette and Jeff Handschke have been great to work with, Jarek adds.
"It's important to have hosts who are flexible and easy to get along with, and they have been outstanding."
Relax and enjoy the show
All of the food available at Wisconsin Farm Technology Days will be grilled on site at each of the food tents.
"FFA Alumni, Lions Clubs, church groups, and a whole potpourri of local service organizations will be working together to handle the menu," Jarek says. "Each of six tents will offer the same food but there will also be an ice cream tent."
Vista Mobility will be providing scooters at a cost of $25 per scooter for the day. There is a designated parking area for handicapped visitors located closer to the show entrance.
"People can't bring their own scooters because of liability issues," Jarek notes. "We will have courtesy shuttles to take people from one end of Tent City to the other."
A first-aid station will be located in the middle of Tent City.
"We will have a first-aid trailer from Emergency Management to handle all emergencies. It will be located at the center of East Sixth and West Sixth Streets," Jarek notes.
The 2012 collectible Wisconsin Farm Technology Days toy is the 1974 6644 Max II Fox self-propelled chopper . The collectible is being rendered in painstaking detail and will be available just before the show. You can also purchase it at the show. Fox choppers were made in Outagamie County.
There also will be an expanded heritage equipment display at the show.
"The Two-Cylinder Club is coordinating the display. They will have some old steam equipment in action each day," says Vic Grimm, 2012 show chairperson.
More than 600 commercial and educational exhibits will be packed into the 60-acre Tent City.
Cost of admission is $5 per person. Parking is free. "It'll be the best $5 you ever spent," Jarek says. Children 12 years old and younger will be admitted free.
*Troy Landwehr will be carving three 40-pound cheese blocks, one on each day of the show.
*Nationally known "grillologists" Mad Dog & Merrill will be giving grilling demonstrations at the show and selling some of their BBQ sauce.
*Addie the Cow, a lifelike cow that is filled with milk and can be milked, will be located in the Youth Tent.
* Take a guided tour of Sugar Creek Farm via tram. Because of biosecurity concerns, visitors cannot walk through the barns, but they can ride through on a tram as part of daily farm tours.
* The Weed Doctors from University of Wisconsin-Madison will be on hand to examine weeds in the Progress Pavilion. The largest weed will win a prize each day.
*Orion Samuelson will headline the Tuesday program at the Wisconsin Cattlemen's Beef Tent. Samuelson will give talks at 11 a.m. and 2 p.m. He will zero in on issues affecting the Beef Industry.
* The State FFA Soils Contest and State FFA Tractor Operators Contest will be held on Tuesday morning at the show.
* Field demonstrations will begin daily at 10 a.m.
* Enjoy entertainment daily in the Family Living and Youth tents.