By Dan Bechtold
Blake Volmer might have found a career he would like to pursue after high school.
The Winner High School sophomore won first place in the state contest in ag broadcasting.
He won first place at the region to quality for state. This year the state meet was held virtually.
Ag broadcasting is a competition in which the participant has 30 minutes to prepare a 3-5 minute radio broadcast.
The participant must choose material from a packet containing news, weather and markets.
Roth, Winner FFA advisor, of Volmer winning first: “This is an
awesome and difficult accomplishment. If it was a nationwide
competition he would be moving on to nationals but since the top
level is state, he has gone as far as he can go.”
A quiet, hard working student athlete at Winner High School, the ag broadcasting competition drew Volmer out of his comfort zone.
This is the first year Volmer has really gotten involved in FFA. When he looked for a contest to participate in ag broadcasting stood out. “When watching basketball on TV I like listening to the broadcasters. I thought ag broadcasting would be cool and felt I would give it a try,” he said.
It worked out for the student as he won first place in the state meet.
Volmer said 30 minutes was not long to develop a radio broadcast. In his packet one of the items was about celebrities supporting agriculture and he felt this would be good to use as a news story. The judges also liked Volmer’s use of this story as it promoted agriculture.
His commercial, which could only be 25 to 30 seconds, was a takeoff on the popular Elf on a Shelf. Volmer called his rendition Farm hand on a stand. He explained this fictional character was like a hired man.
Weather was nice the day he gave the broadcast so he has no problem and did not have to predict a huge winter storm.
Volmer explained judges give points for articulation and being within the time limit. If a participant goes over the time limit, points are deducted.
The Winner sophomore said he would come in before school to practice or would do it in Warrior time.
The state winner says he uses a different voice when doing the broadcast. He said his voice is deeper. “I change it up a little bit,” he said.
Volmer says competing in this contest helps him grow as a person.
He added FFA helps you become a better person. “I get to meet new people and I like that.”
Who knows, someday you may hear Volmer on a radio show.
He has the voice, the personality and determination. You never know when you might hear: This is Blake Volmer reporting live from a farm in South Dakota.
Also placing at the state FFA event as Bailey Fairbanks. She took 15th in creed speaking. Creed speaking competition involves the competitor memorizing and presenting the FFA creed. They also answer questions about how the creed relates to their life.
“I am so very proud of both of these members,” said Roth. “They went above and beyond to compete and were very successful in doing so.”