Cider Day at PYA
PENN YAN — On Friday, Oct. 15, the Penn Yan Academy FFA hosted its annual Cider Day for the Penn Yan Elementary School. Classes were invited down and participated in six different stations run by Penn Yan FFA and Ag. students.
As students walked down from the elementary school, they were greeted this year by a giant inflatable cow named Bertha at our dairy station. Students learned about dairy cows and New York State's top agricultural industry, got a picture in front of Bertha, and had some cheese samples to take back to class. Thank you to Cabot Creamery for donating the cheese samples and the New York Animal Ag Coalition for letting us borrow Bertha.
As always, there was a cider pressing station where students helped with pressing cider from apples donated by Cornell Agritech. Then they each had a sample and each class was able to take a gallon back to their classroom to have later. There were three cider presses running all at once to press two large tubs of Empire apples. The Penn Yan FFA has one press, and the other two presses were loaned to us by John Kriese and Tito Chavez.
Another favorite is the vegetable station. Students received a bag of popcorn and tried their hand at cabbage bowling. Special thanks to Brock's Bowl for loaning the pins, and Hemdale Farms and Wickham corn stands for the cabbage. Students also met with a variety of animals brought in by FFA members including goats, a calf, chickens, rabbits, and peafowl. A special thanks to the Yates County Fairgrounds for loaning the fencing for the animals.
Two new stations were introduced this year for Cider Day which included a honey bee station and a tractor pull station. Students learned about the honey bee hives that agriculture students care for on the roof of the academy, saw the tools used and what a hive looks like, and in the end the teachers received a bag of honey sticks to try. The FFA purchased honey sticks from Woodchucks W.N.Y. Honey. The pedal tractor pulls were new favorite for students. They were able to compete against each other to see who could pull the sled the farthest. Even Mr. Foote and Mr. Baker got in on the action! Thanks to the N.Y. Steam Pageant and Ontario County Fair Board for borrowing the pedal tractors and sleds.
It was a fun-filled day for all students from our elementary up to our high school students who helped run the different stations. The FFA was happy to bring back this annual event after having to cancel last year.