Much Information Shared At Farm-City Banquet

By Betsy Finklea
A great deal of information was shared at the Dillon County Farm-City Week luncheon held recently at the City of Dillon Wellness Center.
Ashley Webster of the Farm-City Week Committee reported on the tour that was taken prior to the luncheon. She said the first stop was W.K. Price Farms, where they saw their cattle operation. She said they sell to local markets and restaurants in Dillon County. They also do home deliveries. The beef that was enjoyed at the luncheon was donated by this farm.
Webster said they also visited Mike Reaves Livestock, where they saw their cattle and hay operation. They have a large contract with Wholesale Foods.
Ed Hayes, an auctioneer from Latta, was the next speaker. Hayes and his wife operate High Cotton Auction in Latta. He is the youngest of five living auctioneers in the county. Hayes gave information about his business, which is a full service auction company. Hayes gave a history of auctioneering. He said auctions date back more than 2,000 years. Greek records show they occurred in 500 B.C. In the United States, auctions date back to the Pilgrims and continued in popularity during the colonialization of American. He discussed the auctioning of livestock and tobacco. He said it has always been a part of agriculture and always will. He then conducted a live auction, which was won by Corey Jackson.
Keith Cox, executive director of the South Carolina FFA (Future Farmers of America) Association, was the next speaker. FFA is helping to support the agriculture industry, Cox said. FFA and 4-H have several opportunities for youth development in agriculture. FFA has over 650,000 members in the nation, a record number. South Carolina has broken over 7,000 members. There are 100 chapters in South Carolina. The make up of FFA has changed – 40 percent of active members are female and 50 percent of the leadership positions are female. He would like to see Dillon County FFAs spend more time with animals. He said the experience one gets from the animal is outstanding, but also more expensive. There are two ag programs in county in Latta and Lake View, and he would love to have one again in Dillon. Dillon County has 11 state officers since 1949.
Allison Harmon, the state FFA secretary from Gilbert and a sophomore at Clemson University, was the next to speak. She talked about joining the 4-H as a child and showing horses. She talked about her experiences showing cows and how she got hooked. She is in her tenth year showing cattle. She said what livestock has taught her comes down to her character and the values and skills she has learned. She highly encourages youth to get involved in showing livestock.
After the speakers, several awards were presented. (See the Thursday, Oct. 19 issue of the Dillon Herald)
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