By Sydney Bartels
Every student in FFA decides to go down a different pathway for their future career. FFA CDEs, or Career Development Events, are designed to help prepare students for their future careers. Winter CDEs on December 1st, 2021, offer competitions such as Livestock Evaluation, Poultry Judging, Agricultural Communications, and Biotechnology. Livestock Evaluation is the most popular event, with 473 FFA students in the district entered in the competition. Silver Lake had four students in the Jr. High division: 8th graders Karah Bartels, Kamille Karr, MaKenna Karr, and Sophie Schmidt. MaKenna Karr placed 17th with 332 points. The girls also competed in the Agricultural Quiz Bowl. It is just like an academic quiz bowl, except all of the questions are associated with agriculture; they placed 19th out of 41 teams. Schmidt said, “I was nervous going in because it was my first year competing, but I thought that our team did the best we could. I am very proud of everyone that competed in livestock judging and other CDE competitions.” In the Junior division,11 students from Silver Lake competed, with sophomore Savanna Junek placing the highest from school, with a score of 451 earning her 1st place. Participating in the Senior division, Silver Lake had four students entered. Juniors Samantha Bonifas, Reagan Rust, and Georgi tenBensel all placed in the top 50. The state livestock judging team will consist of Junek, sophomore Keaton Karr, freshman Clay Plambeck, and freshman Lane Conway. They will compete during the State FFA convention in April. On the other side of the Buffalo County Fairgrounds building was the poultry judging. Sophomore Ashley Bonifas, freshman Addison Schmidt, and freshman Paxton Sorenson competed in this event, securing 299 points in the competition. “Because our poultry judging team was a young team, we used this year as a stepping stone for next year. We learned a lot and gained experience so we can place higher in the future. I am very proud of how well we did considering we didn’t have much experience going into the competition,” commented Ashley Bonifas. Across the parking lot, Agricultural Communications was taking place. Ag Comm is essentially an ag journalism competition. Students take two tests, an editing quiz and a communications quiz, along with creating a media plan outline. Each quiz is independent, while the media plan outline is group work. The judges tally up each individual’s scores from the quizzes and add them up with the media plan outline score to get a total team score. Silver Lake students competing in this particular event were freshmen McKenna Pankoke and Milla Butler and sophomores Sydney Bartels and Madison Karr. The team worked together to earn a 6th place finish in the district. Congratulations and good luck to Savanna Junek and the state livestock judging team.