Operated by the Benton Central Ag Alumni for the Benefit of the Benton Central FFA Chapter
This year nearly 50 FFA students and over 100 volunteers will work together to make the 41st Annual Benton Central FFA Auction a resounding success. Since 1974, the public event has grown into one of the largest FFA auctions in the state – all from a combination of hard-work, volunteerism and countless hours of planning.
This year’s auction, held on March 28th, is expected to draw a record crowd. For many that attend it’s a family tradition, for others a place to buy new trees and landscaping, for everyone in attendance the common thread is community spirit and friendship.
From it’s humble beginnings back in 1974, the auction got it’s start through the suggestion of Dan Kerkhoff. “It was Dan’s persistence that really got Mr. Whistler and I on-board to start the annual auction,” said Dale Butcher, “Dan, Clarence VanShaffen, Larry Scherer and the late Darlene Whistler were instrumental in our early success,” he added.
Today the auction it has grown leaps and bounds, filling the entire parking lot with quality items that everyone can take an interest in. Historically speaking, “The first year the auction was held, it took us 45 minutes from start to finish,” said Larry Scherer of Scherer’s Auction Service. Quite the change from this year’s auction which will start at 9 AM, include twelve (12) volunteer auctioneers and approximately 1,000 bidders. “In recent years, volunteers like Brody Fox and Kristy Kretzmeier have added computer systems that help us get checks out door quickly and efficiently,” commented Mr. Butcher.
Countless FFA Alumni, parents and community members come together every year, putting in hours of work to help our FFA students with this successful event. Current chapter President, Senior Kenzie Kretzmeier said, “This is our primary fundraiser for activities during the year, it’s amazing how the auction gets so much support from both the farming community and Benton County in general.” The FFA students refer to auction week as “Spring Break in the Parking Lot” as they volunteer their entire vacation to the success of the auction.
“It’s a fun, family-friendly event that has something for everyone,” added Kretzmeier.
For the students, the auction is a time of year that they look forward to, “it’s a very fun work environment where we learn valuable skills,” says Chapter VP Phillip Voglewede.
What has the FFA Auction Helped You Learn?
“We learn how to plan, work together, and pull off a successful auction. I am interested in pursuing Management, so the auction has helped me prepare.”
“Responsibility, timeliness and getting the job done to completion are just a few of the things we learn through this experience.”
“I have an interest in Forestry & Natural resources, so the auction has helped me learn about the sales side of the business. Additionally, it’s been a great experience mentoring younger students.”
Everyone in the community is encouraged to attend and enjoy a full day of spirited bidding, food and fun. Dale Butcher noted that, “The Benton Central FFA Auction is known as the ‘Agricultural social event of the year, it draws people from all over the state and signifies he end of winter and the start of the agricultural production season.”
What You Will Find at the Auction:
- High-Quality Trees, Shrubs & Plants
- Lawn & Garden tools and mowers
- ATV’s & Recreational vehicles
- Farm Machinery
- Trucks, Cars, Tractors & Wagons
- Livestock Equipment & Supplies to raise 4-H Animals
- Tillage, Planting & Spraying Equipment
- Local implement dealers showcasing equipment
- And much more!
Ag teacher Amanda Mullins noted, “This year we will have overnight security to prevent the theft of items.”
How Large is the Auction?
- +- 1,000 registered bidders
- Bidders from Illinois, Ohio, Kentucky, Missouri & Texas
Where Does the Money Go?
- Items of $10.00 or Less are a Donation
- $10.01 – $100.00 are 15% Donation
- $101.00 – $500.00 are 10% Donation
- $501.00 – $1,500 .00 are 7% Donation
- $1,501.00 & Up are 4% Donation
- All Monies donated support FFA activities, events, scholarships and more.
When & Where:
- Saturday, March 28, 2015 – 9:00 AM EST
- Benton Central High School Parking Lot
On the Menu:
- Full service concessions all day long
- Coffee, Sandwiches, Chili, BBQ, Nachos, Cookies, Cakes Pies
- Bring the whole family and make it a day