The 2013 Indiana Prairie Farmer and Purdue University College of Agriculture Master Farmer Awards program was held on a commercial farm for the first time. Invited there by Hal and Ty Brown, afternoon hosts on the Indiana Farm Management tour that same day, the program was held in their large new combination machine shed, shop and office building for their Drago corn head business.
Some 250 people were seated for the program in the center of the shop, which could easily have held twice as many people. It's also the only farm shop/tool shed I've visited with two lofts, one on top of the other. The result is a great setting but a potential nightmare for sound and hearing people speak.
Ty helped provide part of the sound system. He also hosts meetings for other purposes. A big thank you goes to Andy Eubank, Hoosier Ag Today, who worked with Brown and also provided sound equipment of his own.
What was novel about this was on the half of the shop closest to the office, the side where more of the crowd was seated, Brown had already installed red, looping panels which didn't fit tightly against the roof. They also alternated, and didn't fit against each other.
"The whole idea is to help muffle echoes and extraneous sound," Brown says. "It can get loud in here with a lot of impact wrenches or other equipment going. We had several reasons to want to try to improve the sound issue."
A stack of red panels on the far end of the shop were yet to be installed. Brown says they will be hung up over the other half of the building. While not everyone may have heard every word of the program, the sound boards helped, and the shop made a tremendous setting for honoring Master Farmers.