(The following account of this year's trip to the National FFA Convention in Louisville, Ken., was written and submitted by Chelcee Noland, who is chapter reporter.)
We were crammed on the mini bus, trapped under the overloaded suitcases of the girls, and both crushing and wrinkling all of the boys' luggage. It was 1 a.m. and the Enterprise FFA was headed for an experience of a lifetime that will be forever etched in each student's memory.
Aboard the bus were Ms. Stephanie Schofield, Jay McFetridge, Jake Thompson, Jessie Morgan, Sara Schnetzky, Erica Perin, Andy Marcum, Kayla Miller, Emily Maasdam, Jacinda Miller, Chelcee Noland and the ever so kind driver of our wild crew, Carl McFetridge.
With our hearts set on Nashville, the first group (consisting of Jessie, Emily, Kayla, Andy, Chelcee and Ms. Schofield) arrived perfectly on time. Upon our arrival we had the privilege of touring the Country Music Hall of Fame. We viewed the CMT station and fine dined at the Hard Rock Cafe.
The first group, while waiting for the second group of Jay, Jacinda, Jake, Sara and Erica, had the exciting honor of meeting the country music band, Rashal Flates, in the airport. At approximately 12:40 a.m. we finally joined with the second group and, all tired, headed for the hotel.
The date was Nov. 1, 2002, when we drove long hours to reach the National Corvette Museum, Monmouth Caves, and we had the special opportunity to drive around the countryside in Kentucky, which was absolutely gorgoeous. We were welcomed with open arms along with 51,000 other FFA members into Louisville, Ken.
That next morning we attended our first session, and from then on remained in official FFA dress (a white button-up shirt, black skirts for the girls, black pants for the boys, and we all proudly sported the FFA national blue and corn gold colors in our jackets.)
During the various sessions we had the honor of meeting an Olympic gold medalist and fromer FFA member who spoke to us, as well as many other inspiring motivational speakers. They had a moving effect on our thoughts, both there and now.
We were also granted the opportunity to see Lonestar and Emerson Drive in concert.
The convention offered a large variety of options for all of the enthusiastic FFA members. That ranged from a hypnotist, to the Six Flags theme park, and country music concert tickets. The convention stadium was a field of blue corduroy jackets from all of the United States. It was a sight we never imagined possible. FFA is a strong organization, and we are truely lucky to be a part of this elite group.
On behalf of our chapter, we would like to thank our advisor and chaperon for this wonderful, unforgettable experience. Without community support and our school board's involvement, this inspirational and liberating experience would not have been possible.