More than $11K raised for Yukon FFA

Annual event supports student programs

Three generations of FFA’ers, Yukon FFA president Liberty Carson with her dad Jim Bob Carson on the left, and her grandfather Phil Carson on the right. (Photo by Carol Mowdy Bond)

By Carol Mowdy Bond
Contributing Writer

The annual fundraiser for Yukon FFA brought over $11,000 into the coffers the evening of Thursday, November 5.

Yukon student members of both FFA and 4-H were present, along with a packed- out and enthusiastic crowd. The event was at the Express Cattle Sale Barn, 2202 N. 11th Street in Yukon.

Marbi Symes, acting president for the past two years of Yukon Ag Boosters, said the booster club organized the entire event.

“This is one of our annual fundraisers,” Symes said. “The other is our rodeo, held the first week of August. But it was canceled this year due to COVID. All funds from our fundraisers go to support our students.”

Volunteer Lynda Landrith serves as the 4-H leader. She’s held that position for 53 years, and she is also the president of the 4-H Leader’s Council, and serves on the 4-H Foundation.

“I am also a substitute teacher for Yukon schools, and I’m a grandma,” Landrith said. “My grandson, Nate, is the Yukon 4-H president. We have many students involved in FFA and 4-H who come from families with multi-generations who were part of these groups. And we have at least 10 kids from really old Yukon families with multiple generations who have been part of these agricultural groups.

“This year’s event includes a silent auction, and a free steak dinner. We’ve had the steak dinner for many years. We raised $11,000 in 2019 at this event. Our entire 4-H and FFA membership is here tonight.”

Symes said, “All funds we raise go to support the students. We send them to state and national conventions, to speech contests, to leadership conferences, and help buy their animals and equipment they need.”

Born and raised in Yukon, Nate Ninman is the president of 4-H. He’s a fifth generation member of FFA. His father, his grandmother Lynda Landrith, Lynda’s father, and Lynda’s grandfather have all been members of FFA.

A Yukon High School sophomore, Ninman said, “I’ve been in this four to five years. I like what 4-H does for kids my age and older. It give us future opportunities, and we learn public speaking and also how to show our animals in front of the public. I have a steer. I live in a neighborhood, but I keep my steer at the ag barn.

“4-H is a really good program for kids to join, to improve themselves in areas they might not realize, and to be exposed to new things. I’m in both 4-H and FFA. And I compete with my steer through FFA for prizes. I’ve won multiple awards including Champion Breed, and 1st class ribbons.”

A senior at Yukon High School, Liberty Carson serves as FFA president for the second year in a row. Carson and two generations of her family, who were also part of FFA, were at the event. Her dad, Jim Bob Carson, an insurance adjustor with McLarens, was present.

And her grandfather, former Canadian County Commissioner Phil Carson, also attended.

Phil serves with the Canadian County Health Department, the Canadian County Free Fair Board, and is part of numerous other groups. And Phil said, “I’m the honeybee guy at BlueSTEM AgriLearning Center at Fort Reno in El Reno.”

A member of FFA for five years, Carson’s pigs have won numerous awards, including Exposition of Youth for Oklahoma Grand Champion, Grand Champion at the Canadian County Fair, Reserve Grand Champion at the Southwest District, and Grand Champion at Oklahoma Youth Expo.

Carson said, “When we sell our animals, we get extra reward money for our animals and this fundraiser helps pay for that.

“I love agriculture. It’s as simple as that.”