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WFTD Board to Forgo 2021 Show; '20 & '22 Still on Schedule
Wisconsin Ag Connection - 10/08/2019

The governing board of Wisconsin Farm Technology Days says they are calling off plans to hold its first non-county hosted event during 2021, which was to be held at the Jefferson County Fairgrounds in July of that year. General Manager Matt Glewen told Wisconsin Ag Connection that the low attendance of the 2019 show, also held in Jefferson County, caused exhibitors to second-guess their commitment to return to the area two years later.

"We have been communicating with our exhibitors and they felt that bringing the show back to the same county so soon would not be beneficial," Glewen said. "It's not that the location was a poor one, but people's perceptions were a factor in the decision. We also heard from many attendees who prefer going to a show held on an actual farm."

The decision to choose a non-farm venue was made in early 2018 when no counties came forward to apply for the 2021 spot. The board then solicited the Iola Car Show grounds in Waupaca County as well as the Jefferson County Fairgrounds, which ultimately won the bid.

In addition to a tough farm economy, many blame the nice weather for this year's poor turnout because many farmers needed to take advantage of the dry conditions to get caught up with their fieldwork instead of taking a day off to attend the show.

Meanwhile, Glewen said the local county committees working on the 2020 show in Eau Claire County and the 2022 event in Clark County are very strong.

"The board will be focusing their efforts on these two upcoming shows, as well as looking for a county to apply for 2023," he noted.

The Eau Claire show will be hosted by Silver Springs Farms next summer, which is the largest horseradish producer in the world. There will also be a bus tour of the nearby Nellie's Holsteins. The Clark County group has also selected its site for 2022 and will be making a public announcement later in October.

Formerly known as Wisconsin Farm Progress Days, the annual three-day event has been held every year since 1954.

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