Official numbers aren't out but both the Indiana and Illinois FFA's are more than $20,000 better off after the two-day, so-called 'Titan-Tire Auction' held at the Farm Progress Show last week in Decatur, Ill. Bidders spent money for a good cause, but many got good bargains in the process.
Now the person that spent more than $1,500 for a night on the town in Indianapolis for 12 and a Pacers game, well, let's hope he is a true, blue Pacer fan. But someone took home one of the Kinze toy corn planters valued at about $350 for just under $300. Many other farmers used it as a shrewd buying opportunity, buying tires of all sizes and descriptions.
It wasn't a free-ride for FFA members. State officers of both states scoured the grounds, asking companies for various products they could sell. Many companies donated, including several seed companies. The officers also pushed around the tires as the auctioneers, perched high above the crowed, prepared to sell them. And they even helped load and deliver some of the tires.
"It was hard work, but it was great for us," says Joe Rust, southern region vice-president in Indiana. The money will be used to fund various activities of the FFA in both states.
The auction began several years ago, and ahs continued. It is the only live auction allowed on the grounds at the Farm Progress Show. The FFAs of both states also man booth space next to the Titan exhibit, where they display information about activities of the FFA in each state.
Next year a tire auction will be held in Iowa at the 2010 Farm Progress Show in Boone, Iowa. Boone is the semi-permanent site for the show when it goes to Iowa every other year. Money raised next year will support the Iowa FFA.
Since the show no longer comes to Indiana, but since Indiana Prairie Farmer is an official co-sponsor of the show, both Illinois and Indiana FFA groups work the sale together and split the proceeds.
Here's a hearty 'thank you' on behalf of the FFA and Farm Progress to those of you who supported this event.