By Jordan Van Skike, 2021–2022 FFA Chapter Reporter, Garces Memorial High School
May 13th marked the Garces Memorial FFA’s second and a half annual FFA banquet. Last year the event was downsized to a drive-through due to COVID-19, but even then, the chapter made the best of it. This year, however, the chapter was able to hold an all-out award ceremony outdoors. Garces FFA was able to highlight the members’ boundless involvement and achievements. Their theme for the night was “rise,” which members had clearly demonstrated throughout this year, rising above limitations. This night gave the chapter the opportunity to recognize not only the immense accomplishments of its members but also to show their appreciation for their benefactors. The chapter acknowledged their supporters for all of their encouragement and help throughout this year’s challenges. The banquet gives everyone a chance to be rewarded for their hard work and contributions to the Garces FFA.
The Garces members have gone above and beyond this year; they have proved themselves to be valuable members of the agriculture community and extraordinary citizens as a whole. Some of the awards presented ranged from completion of an individual’s SAE all the way to completion of the program. Others included character virtue awards such as knowledge, faith, compassion, and justice which the FFA is built on. But it did not end there, still others were presented for high achieving degree awards, star greenhands, and star chapter farmers. The night began with the current officer team opening the event and concluded with the newly elected officers closing the banquet. The chapter’s fair exhibitors also received recognition for persevering through the adversities this year’s Kern County Fair presented. Even through the difficulties, the Garces FFA chapter participated in numerous competitions and events, and every contributor was spotlighted during the banquet. All of the members were awarded for their outstanding accomplishments and commitment to the Garces FFA program.
The banquet was also an opportunity for the Garces FFA family to gather and celebrate their successful year. Members and their families were able to come together to share in a delicious meal catered by Luigi’s and some flavorful barbecue prepared by our FFA dads, followed by some fresh home baked cookies. The entire event was run by the 2020 officer team, the upperclassmen, and their dedicated advisor, Ashleigh Rossi, who kept the night running smoothly and helped organize everything.
“Our members work hard towards this event all year, and it is truly rewarding to celebrate all of their amazing accomplishments despite this limiting year. I can honestly say we had very few setbacks this year and their awards showcase that,” stated Rossi.
Members of every class had roles announcing awards and their importance, as well as introducing other speakers. Special members of the community also attended the event to give out individual awards. Each speaker could choose their walk-up song, and music was heard all throughout the night. The members, their families, and their supporters were all applauded, and all received the recognition they had truly earned. Everyone was able to enjoy an exciting night of awards, food, family, fun, and most of all FFA.