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This is why 22 tractors are parked outside Rigby High School today

Education

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Photos courtesy Jefferson School District 251

RIGBY — No, it’s not a tractor convention. It’s National FFA Week and for the fourth year in a row, Rigby High School FFA members rode tractors to school Thursday to celebrate.

Thirty-five FFA members gathered at Scotty’s True Value on State Street around 7:40 a.m. and hopped on 22 tractors to begin their journey. They arrived 30 minutes later and parked in a row outside the school.

“Anybody that is part of our program is welcome to drive a tractor,” FFA student advisor Maison Weiers tells EastIdahoNews.com. “We started planning the tractor drive back in June to promote our program and agriculture.”

This is the fourth year the tractor drive has been held. Faculty advisor Lex Godfrey began the tradition in Burley where he taught for 16 years. While there, one of his students attended a national convention and learned FFA members in other parts of the country were driving tractors to school.

“He told me that he wanted to do something like that and I said, ‘Ok. Let’s go!'” Godfrey says. “When I moved to Rigby, I brought the idea here. Our first year we had nine tractors and it just gets bigger and more fun.”

The student drivers sign a conduct form promising to be safe while operating their tractors. The Rigby Police Department escorted the group and while some other drivers were impatient with the 18 mph parade, many others gave the FFA members thumbs-up.

“It’s pretty cool to see everybody come together united with their tractors and have a redneck ‘drive a tractor to school day,’ senior Tanner Doman explains. “I think it’s really great for the community to see it.”

More than 760,000 students nationwide are part of 8,700 local FFA chapters in all 50 states and Puerto Rico. Over 600 Rigby High School students participate in the program with 200 being paid members. The group held an appreciation luncheon Thursday and on Friday, they’ll gather for a service project.

“Around 30 to 50 of our FFA members will build panels for a new building at the fairgrounds and we’ll be sanitizing the hallways at Rigby High School,” faculty advisor Robert Hale says. “It’s a great organization to be involved with.”

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