The Daily Item, Sunbury, PA

February 21, 2013

Tractors return for annual display at the Danville Area High School

By Robert Stoneback
The Danville News

— DANVILLE — All this week, students’ tractors will be parked in front of Danville High School

For the past five years, students have done so as part of National FFA Week, which runs through Saturday.

Danville High School student and FFA Club member Kolby Whitenight brought two of his family’s large tractors to display the morning of Feb. 19. He and his cousin, fellow FFA member Makaela Bickhart, drove the two tractors across the Riverside bridge, from their homes to the high school, the previous night. “We averaged about 15 to 20 miles per hour coming over,” said Whitenight. “By the time I got here, my face was so numb I couldn’t tell if I had a hat on or not.”

Another club member, Easton Latranyi, will bring his family’s antique John Deere Model B tractor to park in front of the school today. He drove it Wednesday night from his grandparents’ property near Danville’s Susquehanna Valley Winery. On the road, it averages about 12 to 15 miles per hour, he said.

The tractors on display Wednesday were brought in by Whitenight, Latranyi and Brett Taylor. The four tractors they brought in were all for smaller, gardening jobs, such as tilling and mowing grass.

A faculty and staff breakfast was also held Wednesday morning in the high school agriculture classroom. Students served faculty and staff members a meal including hash brown casserole, bagels, doughnuts, fruit and coffee from 7 a.m. to 7:40 a.m.

About 40 district staff members attended the breakfast. “We had the best turnout we ever had,” said Mike Shultz, agriculture teacher.

Earlier this school year, Danville’s agriculture department was awarded a $25,000 grant to enhance its curriculum. There is more technology integrated into the course work now, Shultz said. A new plant science course has been added with an animal science class next school year.

Subjects build on each other more effectively, tying back to previous lessons. Shultz has seen that take affect the last few weeks. “The kids are starting to see lightbulbs they haven’t seen before,” he said.