With a successful fall season behind them, Brownwood High School FFA chapter members are preparing for a busy winter season.

Chapter members described their past accomplishments — including a trip to state competition for two teams from the chapter — as they prepare for the Brown County Youth in January and the rest of the stock show season.

Two Brownwood FFA teams advanced to state competition, held Nov. 30 in Huntsville. Those teams were the Ag Issues Forum Senior Quiz teams.

The seven-member Ag Issues Forum team finished as a semi-finalist with its presentation on wind farms.

As the team presented for the last time at the state competition, the judges noted the passion exhibited by team and the detailed answers team members gave.

Although the team did not win first place, it was a memorable experience for the members. “Even though I’ve only been on this team for a year, the Brownwood Ag Issues team was a dream to be on,” team member Austin Haynes said.

“The team advanced me to my first (Leadership Development Events) contest and imparted a love of being a voice in the community.”

Following the Ag Issues competition, four of the members from the Ag Issues team competed in Texas State FFA Chapter Quiz. The contest tested the team’s knowledge of the Farm Bill, the FFA organization, parliamentary procedure and agricultural issues such as GMOs.

The test was the most detailed chapter quiz given to state contestants in all the years of the contest. Team members did their best by using critical thinking skills to find the best answer to all the 150 questions given to them.

The team did not receive a top 10 team placing, but team member Emily Chapa  received the third highest individual score with a score of 110 out of 150. 

“This is my fourth time to be on the team and each year it just gets better and better,” Chapa said. “Through my years, I have seen this team grow and find a love in studying about agriculture. Everyone on this team works immensely hard and studies day and night to get to where they are now.

“I have been trying to secure a top three individual place at state in this competition since freshman year, and I couldn’t be happier that I finally did it.” 

At the district banquet, chapter member Kyler Dean received second place in the talent contest. The chapter was also represented by district officers Trinitee Skelton and Shea Hughes.

The chapter show was on Dec. 8, the weekend after state competition.

At the show, the exhibitors gained places, buckles, and insight on how their show animals were holding up. 

Immediately, following the chapter show, the Brownwood FFA began their community service activities with the Salvation Army and the Ark Domestic Violence Shelter. Roughly 15 members of the Brownwood FFA spent two or more hours over three evenings ringing bells in front of Brookshires the week of Dec. 10.

The families of the Brownwood FFA chapter then took a part in the Ark drive. They gathered items ranging from bicycles and toy cars to dish detergent and personal care necessities. 

Next on the chapter’s schedule is the Brown County Youth Fair, where chapter members have more than 80 swine, 40 sheep, 40 goats, 20 bunnies and 10 steers, as well as numerous home economic projects entered. The chapter will work over the holidays to ensure a successful youth fair and stock show season in 2019.