More than 60,000 FFA members are expected at the National FFA Convention and Expo in Louisville, Ky., this week, starting Oct. 29 and running through Nov. 1.
The convention and expo will bring an estimated economic impact of $40 million, making it the largest convention and expo for Louisville this year. Attendees will stay in 136 hotels for a combined 39,247 nights within a 60-mile radius of Louisville. The event will stay in Louisville through 2015 before returning to Indianapolis for three years.
"Go All Out" is the theme of this year's convention and expo. "With the opportunities we are given in our lives, we must take action. We must give it our all and put everything we have into everything we do," 2013-2014 National FFA President Brian Walsh, a Virginia Tech student, said. "We must go all out to develop positive leadership, personal growth and career success."
Nine general sessions will draw FFA members together at the Kentucky Exposition Center. Students will engage with exhibitors from more than 450 corporations, organizations and colleges at the expo inside the center. Other events will be held at venues downtown, in the suburbs and beyond.
Nick Vujicic will be the opening session's headline motivational speaker. Tyson Foods, Inc., President and CEO Donnie Smith will deliver his message to attendees during the third general session on Oct. 30. On Oct. 31, Elanco President Jeff Simmons and Southern humorist Jane Jenkins Herlong will address convention goers during the fourth and seventh general sessions, respectfully.
Throughout the week, students will attend more than 85 leadership and personal growth workshops. FFA members will also tour industry destinations, including Papa John's international headquarters, Ford's Louisville assembly plant, Churchill Downs and more.
FFA members also will participate in community-service initiatives throughout the week. Students will help beautify the city, volunteer at a local food bank, harvest and distribute locally grown produce, package meals for families in need, and more.
Country music star Justin Moore with special guest Easton Corbin will perform exclusively for FFA members the night of Oct. 29 at KFC Yum! Center, and on Thursday, Oct. 30, Scotty McCreery, Danielle Bradbery and The Springs will take the stage.
The World's Toughest Rodeo will unfold on the nights of Oct. 30 and 31 at Broadbent Arena, inside the Kentucky Exposition Center. A late-night, lock-in dance on Oct. 31 will be hosted by the National FFA Alumni Association.
The convention and expo ends Nov. 1, after national delegates representing FFA in all state associations elect a new, six-member national FFA officer team for 2014-2015.
Portions of the event will be streamed live on iHigh.com.
Source: National FFA