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What did everyone think of ag days 2019? I think its a great event, great speakers, same old machinery that's over priced.. I would like to see them charge a little bit of $ to get in maybe thin the crowd out abit??
 

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Had a great time. Actually made it through my list of people to visit which is tough when every 50' you have to stop and talk to an old acquaintance/business contact/neighbor/etc. I actually enjoy that part of the show as much as the paint, lots of good relationships in AG.:smile:

The admission is free Don and probably something they need to address. I talked to a lot of people this year and in years past and it is definitely something that exhibitors would like and no serious customer would blink an eye at $10-15 to go to the show. Lots of school kids and seniors just walking around and grabbing pens and whatever they can get their hands on for free, it will only get worse...

Some exhibitors that sell smaller stuff said they had their best show ever, so that is good. Lots coming from SK and ND to the show.

Only 362 days until Ag-Days 2020!:biggrin:
 

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I do not think that charging an admission will help with thinning the crowds out very much.
The shows that do have an admission still let kids in for a greatly reduced price or sometimes free. I have gone to multiple shows that charge admission and have had exhibitors complain about all the school kids that grab everything they can get their hands on including sales literature just to likely have it go in the garbage when they get home. The second thing is most of the other shows will make you stand outside in the cold if you happen to show up a few minutes early, before they will open the doors to start charging admission.
I really like the Brandon Show, just show up, park, and go inside, no hassle.
 

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As a farmer it is definitely one of the harder shows to navigate because of the crowds and frustrating. I know many of the exhibitors (especially the service based businesses) would like to see an admission charge so that it's potential customers only. The organizers are looking at it completely differently and do not want to charge because they want to draw in the general public for ag education. They see ag days as one of the ways to educate the consumer and that was even more evident this year with all the "Farm Facts" signs everywhere.


I understand both sides of the argument and don't know what the ideal answer is because that consumer connection is important. After all a lot of the restrictions that are coming to ag are because the consumer has become so disconnected and doesn't understand or believe farmers care about food safety or residue limits. Maybe keeping exhibitor cost the same and charging an admission would thin the crowd out to satisfy the one side and use the extra money then to sponsor a public education day? Is that a fourth day added on that is free? But then the exhibitors aren't happy because extra days are tiring especially for those who have to attend all the shows in January.
 

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As a farmer it is definitely one of the harder shows to navigate because of the crowds and frustrating. I know many of the exhibitors (especially the service based businesses) would like to see an admission charge so that it's potential customers only. The organizers are looking at it completely differently and do not want to charge because they want to draw in the general public for ag education. They see ag days as one of the ways to educate the consumer and that was even more evident this year with all the "Farm Facts" signs everywhere.


I understand both sides of the argument and don't know what the ideal answer is because that consumer connection is important. After all a lot of the restrictions that are coming to ag are because the consumer has become so disconnected and doesn't understand or believe farmers care about food safety or residue limits. Maybe keeping exhibitor cost the same and charging an admission would thin the crowd out to satisfy the one side and use the extra money then to sponsor a public education day? Is that a fourth day added on that is free? But then the exhibitors aren't happy because extra days are tiring especially for those who have to attend all the shows in January.
The exhibitors shouldn't have to sponsor public education, no way! The people that aren't farmers showing up aren't there to learn, just to fill their pockets. I doubt they were reading the farm facts boards and even if they did I saw one that said canola weighed 60#/bushel...:rolleyes:

If there is an admission charge exhibitors might hand out tickets to paying customers though. Go early to Ag-Days if you aren't an exhibitor and you will get sent back outside, happened to me!

If they want to educate kids, which I think is a losing battle, they should go to the schools. Taking them to the Keystone center creates a bad image that farmers are a bottomless pit of money. Truth is most farmers will never own most of the stuff in that building the way it's priced.:frown:
 

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The Saskatoon show charges an admission but I can’t remember the last time I paid to go. Always have 4-5 businesses offer free tickets to me.

There are a lot of farmers that just go to the shows for free stuff also when you look at the bags full of stuff they have.
 

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I think if they charged a small fee, it would definetly thin out the freebee hunters. It's nice to see good crowds, but makes it next to impossible to actually look at things in depth. As far as the bus loads of kids, they mostly just run around sitting in seats and honking horns and taking all they can get. It's different if they are there with their parents, it shouldn't be a scavenger hunt for school kids. One thing I wish they did was have maps up in each room, my god I get lost in that building! There was a few things I didn't get to see because I couldn't find them and I was short on time, with a 5 year old in tow. I wish I had a chance to meet some of the guys from this forum, sounds like many of you were there.
 

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I noticed there were less freebies set out this year. I got stuff when I asked about products, and was genuinely interested in learning. Then stuff came out from behind a table. I imagine it's due to the dozen geriatrics pulling oxygen tanks I got stuck behind. A $10 or $15 fee wouldn't hurt my feelings at all, and then donate a day to Ag in the Classroom for education.
 

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Go early to Ag-Days if you aren't an exhibitor and you will get sent back outside, happened to me!:frown:
Maybe they have tightened up security last time I was there 2? years ago I just walked right pass security. Even if they had stopped me I was still inside the building where it was warm.
 

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We keep saying that city dwellers do not understand how farming works and we are right. Opportunities for contact between farming and the urban population are rare. Cutting the non farming population out of situations such as this is shooting ourselves in the foot.

The number of people who hate us outnumber us, if we do nothing this will get worse. Politicians job is to get re-elected and they will do whatever it takes to be successful in doing their job; if this requires totally throwing us under the bus it will happen in a heartbeat. If there was a popular vote today every one of us would be farming organically this year wether we liked it or not.

Losing contact with the urban population is a mistake that we have made in the past. We are paying for that now and will continue to pay for some time to come. The only way out of this is to reconnect every chance we get. If we continue to be seen as operating in the shadows, as it is believed by many urbanites, things will only get worse for us.

I walked through the same crowds and yes it was a bit of an annoyance at times. One day of occasional annoyance is a very small price to pay for getting some support from the broader population on issues that affect us. These crowds have been there for decades now, this is not something new.

Another problem is that giant farm inc gets 10 free passes while small farm inc pays their own way in year one. Year two has small farm inc saying "screw this, they don't want me there so I am not going" and I can assure you this will happen.

I was at the first "ag days" when it was a weed fair and there was no admission. Their continued no admission policy is what has made the show what it is today. A few years ago the exhibitors were asked if they would rather have a price increase for their booths or charge admission, the overwhelming response was to pay a bit more for the booth and not charge admission. There is a 3-5 year waiting list for a spot at the show so anyone who does not want to be there will have their spot snapped up in a heartbeat.
 

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I say no to paid admission, if booths don't want kids grabbing free pens then keep them behind the curtain until a customer comes to chat and then offer it. Yes there is crowds but does that really keep anyone from looking at the booths? All the non farming visitors aren't asking the exhibitors questions and taking up time. If they charged admission would I go? All three days like I've done the last 10 years.
 

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Even though having kids at ag days may be a nuisance for some of us farmers I think this is one of the few opportunities we have to expose kids and the urban non farming community to ag. I see a big improvement from past years where kids running around in a free for all. I saw lots of groups with teachers / parents there trying to keep kids in check an actually educate them some. You could see lots of fact sheets all over the place and looked like kids were needing to find answers to questions as part of their assignment that was part of the tour. Yes it may be an inconvenience fighting the crowd of kids and non farmers but every time we get to tell our story about ag vs them coming up with their own opinion based on false information is a win for farmers.
 

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I agree it’s good for non farm people to attend these shows and learn about what we do. Agribtion in Regina is full of kids from schools, they are actually learning their food does not come from a grocery store!
 

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Isn't it a bit pompous to suggest that only the serious buyer's attend the show.....:22: I mean but hurt because "free loader's" grabbing free crap??? Because the serious buyer's are so interested in the free crap???
 

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That show has some long lasting effects. It’s like being inside of a virtual equipment catalogue. Somehow a bunch of that crap that I fell in love with in the 80’s ended up in my building!!!! WTF. I’m still overhauling and buying lots of parts for it.
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One other angle to look at with non farm kids at the show is that hopefully it inspires a few to consider working in the ag field, specifically in the equipment sector.
It is getting very concerning how hard it is to find quality equipment mechanics, sales people, parts people, etc.
 

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One other angle to look at with non farm kids at the show is that hopefully it inspires a few to consider working in the ag field, specifically in the equipment sector.
It is getting very concerning how hard it is to find quality equipment mechanics, sales people, parts people, etc.
And people to drive that equipment !
 

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Must be different up there than down here...


First day: everyone holds their freebees back to only people who are serious about buying

Second day: "you want one? Take two"

Third day: "I see you already have 4 bags and a 5 gallon bucket, but here take my bag-you know what? Here take two, I'll fill one up with hats and stuff and give you another empty"

End of day three: "you like hats, our equipment? how about the color? Yes? Here's a box of stuff we have to give away and forgot to put out"

The only ones who seem to do different is the smaller ones, they hold their stuff back to the end of day three, then they are like the rest.

This is what I have seen at big iron and the small shows(like the ones sponsored by the TV stations). Only time they get annoyed is when a kid comes by with an arm full of hats and wants another(literally he had them stacked all the way up to his shoulders and asks for another)
 
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