By Starla Pointer • Staff Writer • 

FFA to dish up corn and conversation

ewastudio / Can Stock Photo
ewastudio / Can Stock Photo

PERRYDALE — Students will be shucking corn and peeling apples in preparation for Perrydale’s annual FFA corn feed, slated for Friday, Oct. 7.

The corn feed began 1985. Hundreds of community residents join local students in turning out to socialize.

The event is scheduled to run 4:30 to 8 p.m. at the school. Locally harvested corn on the cob will be dished up, along with hot dogs, beverages, applesauce and apple crisp, the latter both produced from local apples.

Tickets cost $5 for local students, $7 for other individuals, $12 for couples and $25 for families of four or more. They may be arranged in advance by calling 503-835-3184 or contacting a participating FFA member, or purchased at the door.

Following the feed, Perrydale will be playing Ione in football.

Proceeds from the corn feed will help FFA members attend the national convention in Indianapolis. Perrydale FFA President Sierra Starr said she and her fellow students will get a chance to “grow their leadership skills and ag knowledge” at the event.

The Perrydale representatives will serve on the national courtesy corps, helping other students get settled and find their way around. They’ll also have a chance to meet with national leaders on the food insecurity challenge.

The Perrydale FFA has teamed with other Yamhill County FFA programs to help address the problem for several years through its annual Food for All program. Twenty farmers donate produce, which students collect, bag and distribute to people in need each December.

Former Perrydale FFA adviser Kirk “Hutch” Hutchinson led a group of fellow advisers in launching Food for All. The program now is overseen by Christina Lorenz, in her second year as Perrydale’s ag instructor and FFA adviser.

Food for All is one of many activities in which FFA members take part, Lorenz said. The activities help students learn to plan and lead events; they also learn food safety, sales skills, customer relations, networking, fundraising and other skills, as well as leadership in general, she said.

FFA reporter Maddy Ford said she and her fellow officers attended a regional leadership camp in Gresham in mid-September. She said Perrydale students were joined by their counterparts from Amity, Dayton, Yamhill-Carlton, Sheridan, Willamina and McMinnville, as well as high schools from other parts of Northwestern Oregon.

Each officer attended a training session with a state officer. Tiffany Clark, Perrydale’s sentinel, met with the state sentinel, for instance, and  Michelle Sekafetz, Perrydale’s secretary, met with a former state secretary.

Michelle said she learned ways to be more active in leading activities.

The sophomore said she helped with events in ninth-grade, her first year in FFA, but wasn’t a leader. This year, she said she plans to “focus on being a main role model.”

In addition to the corn feed, she and the other Perrydale officers are preparing to take part in Oregon Bounty, a celebration of agriculture that will be held from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 8, at the Oregon State Capitol.

Perrydale’s Food for All program will have a booth at which visitors can help bag apples or potatoes for distribution to the needy, they said. In addition, they plan to have a small petting zoo so visitors can learn about the animals FFA members raise.