Ok, ok. This weather is truly out of hand. In true Alabama fashion, the weather has us on a roller coaster ride. Sub-freezing temps to mid-70s in February to “drought” conditions and heavy rainstorms that leave us cattlemen in mud up to our knees. The rye grass is coming in slow while the feed sacks are emptying fast. It’s wintertime in Alabama (we think?) and as temperatures are looking to turn north, so are we as we prepare for our biggest event of the year. Keep reading to get an update on Convention and to learn more about what’s going on at the ACA this week.
ACA CONVENTION & TRADE SHOW- EARLY BIRD ENDS NEXT WEEK!
Hoof It to Huntsville for the 75th annual ACA Convention! We’ve got a record number of pre-registrants, almost 70 and counting vendors for the trade show and the Embassy is booked full. (Keep reading for hotel information!)
This year’s convention schedule is packed with great speakers, an engaging and interactive trade show, junior cattlemen activities and live entertainment. Here’s the run down!
On Friday, March 9, get ready to kick off the convention with Cattlemen’s College 1 which is all about “Cattle Handling and Disease Prevention,” followed by our Opening General Session led by Ranch House Designs Chief Marketing Officer and Alabama-native Ashley Grant. After that, grab your dancing’ boots and head on over to the trade show where Tim Tyler’s Piano Experience will bring the toe-tapping tunes, and we’ll have a delicious menu ready for you to graze around. During that nightly social, we’ll also host our annual PAC Auction with some awesome items including a 2-day, 2-night hunt at “The Swamp Whitetails,” a Winchester Commemorative leaver action rifle, a black baldy oil painting, bull credits, a registered Brangus bull, Stetson boots and SO many more neat items you’ll want to take home! If you’re interested in donating an item to the PAC Auction, give Erin Beasley a call at (334) 265-1867.
Now that’s just the Friday fun. Saturday will bring a whole host of exciting educational events starting with the ACA Annual Membership Meeting where you’ll elect your new state officers. After the changing of the guard, Cattlefax Senior Market Analyst Kevin Good will lead our General Session 2 as he discusses market, weather and import/export outlooks. After the Cattlemen’s Luncheon with featured speaker Gov. Kay Ivey, the trade show- with over 75 vendors- will open up and our afternoon of Cattlemen’s Colleges will commence. Topics include estate planning, pasture management and nutrition and information on Extension’s “Pasture to Rail” retained ownership program. Last but certainly not least on the convention agenda is our awards banquet where we’ll induct new members to the Alabama Livestock Hall of Fame and award over $55,000 in scholarships to deserving students. Following the awards banquet, grab those dancin’ boots again as the Rexton Lee Band amps up our Blue Jeans Ball!
Junior Cattlemen are not left out of the fun. This week, your checkoff staff has been working on an elaborate and educational scavenger hunt for those junior cattlemen to enjoy and build those teamwork skills. They’ll also have their own speaker and get to participate in leadership games and activities with ACA Director of Industry Relations & Youth Programs Michael Agar.
We sure hope you’ll Hoof It to Huntsville to the 75th annual ACA Convention & Trade Show! It’s sure to be a great time of education, networking and getting involved with your association.
Click Here to Register Now! Or call us at (334) 265-1867 to register by phone. The Embassy Suites is BOOKED full. We have an Alabama Cattlemen’s Association block at the neighboring Homewood Suites. Click here or call 256.539.1445 to book your room at the Homewood Suites by Hilton Huntsville Downtown.
SLE RODEO TICKETS ON SALE NOW
The 61st annual SLE Rodeo is coming to town March 15-17 at Garrett Coliseum. PRCA 2017 Stock Contractor of the Year Frontier Rodeo Company’s elite bucking stock, PRCA Freestyle Bullfighting and hometown funny man Trent McFarland are sure to combine to make one excellent show for the whole family! Kids events will be available where your little buckaroo can play in the dirt like a real rodeo cowboy. SLE Rodeo tickets are on sale now! Call us at 888-2RODEO2 or visit us online to order tickets to the show and to learn more about the 2018 SLE Rodeo!
As ACA Membership Coordinator Jessica Kennedy works diligently to put in county memberships, we encourage county leaders to help her out by setting aside 30-45 minutes to complete a training webinar for the new membership software, i4a. Software training webinars are still happening! If you have not signed up for training please send Jessica the days that are best for you and if you want a 12pm, 3pm, or 7pm slot. Please choose multiple times and days of availability. If you’re not a big emailer, give her a call at (334) 265-1867.
On that note, we also want to encourage you to keep an eye out for renewal notices as the second renewal mailout is hitting mailboxes this month! Be sure to get those memberships sent to the state office. Over the Top deadline is set for March 31st.
COUNTY MEETINGS HAPPENING ACROSS ALABAMA
County annual meetings are in full swing, and your state staff is excited to buzz all around visiting those meetings. If a state staffer isn’t in attendance, then one of our outstanding officers are. This week alone we’ve hit Clarke, Henry, Pickens and Crenshaw counties. Stay updated with the “when” and “where” of meetings by visiting our Cattlemen’s Calendar. If you’re meeting isn’t on the list, be sure to send that information to Jessica.
Jessica is also anxiously awaiting your county leadership updates and county annual meeting photos. She needs the names and contact information of the newest county leaders in order to organize the updating of the magazine and website as well as provide the correct correspondence for important letters and emails pertaining to Board Members. Please send those updates to Jessica! She is also looking out for information on your upcoming county meetings. Send those dates, times and locations her way to get them included on our online calendar and to line up a state representative to attend the event. If you’d like a county meeting mailout done, please give Jessica TWO WEEKS notice. Those mailouts take a good bit of time to design, print and label, so please give us plenty of notice to do a clean, thorough job for your county.
If you’re favorite student applied for an Alabama Cattlemen’s Foundation scholarship, be on the look out for a letter and an email THIS WEEK. We’re proud to award over $60,000 in scholarships this year to deserving students across the state. This year’s applicant pool was extraordinary as we had a plethora of students with superb grades and loads of agricultural involvement.
We are thrilled to award scholarships to Alabama’s finest cattle kids!
Hosting Large Animal Bovine Vet Students
The ACA is looking forward to hosting Dr. Misty Edmondson’s large animal bovine veterinarian students this Friday at the ACA building. While visiting along with State Veterinarian Dr. Tony Frazier, the students will tour our building, enjoy lunch and learn more about Alabama’s beef cattle industry and our association. This group stops by for a visit each year, and we appreciate the leadership of Dr. Edmondson to introduce her students to our association.
AL Cattlemen Blazed a Trail to Phoenix
Alabama Cattlemen’s had quite the showing at the 2018 Cattle Industry Convention and Trade Show in Phoenix last week. Your state officers, collegiate cattlemen and others had a successful trip out west to visit the largest industry trade show in the nation and participate in all the meetings and events! We’re proud to announce that ACA Past President Jimmy Holliman was elected to serve as your Region II policy vice president where he’ll represent the Southeast at the policy roundtable.
We’re already looking forward to a trip to the bayou next year as convention comes to New Orleans!
Staffers Head North
ACA staffers Michael Agar and Kayla Greer enjoyed the opportunity to travel across north Alabama last week to visit with and present the owners at Tennessee Valley Livestock, Fort Payne Stockyard and Sand Mountain Stockyard and with BEEF signage and ACA sorting flags. They also stopped by former Regional Vice President Clay Kennamer’s operation in Hollywood, Alabama and ACA President-Elect Jack Batts’ homeplace in Athens. We appreciate the hospitality shown and the time everyone took to meet with us. Look for more in the March issue of the Alabama Cattleman magazine. Great sales, fine facilities and nice folks along the way!
Legislature Heating Up
While the legislature is heating up in Montgomery, your Cattlemen’s lobbyist Erin Beasley has been spending time at the State House and planning our upcoming PAC Reception and reception for Congressman Mike Rogers. She is on the forefront of the discussions about the impending ELD extension expiration and is fighting to protect Alabama’s cattle producers from the effects of mandatory electronic logging devices.
YCLP CLASS V APPLICATIONS NOW AVAILABLE
The Alabama Cattlemen’s Association recognizes the need to cultivate our future leaders of the association and industry. The Young Cattlemen’s Leadership Program (YCLP), funded in part by the Alabama State Beef Checkoff, aims to do just that by identifying the state’s top young cattlemen and developing them into leaders of the future.
The three primary goals of the YCLP are:
- Provide participants with a “pasture to plate” experience of Alabama’s beef industry
- Equip participants with the tools necessary to become an effective leader and to share their beef story with their peers
- Create a network of young cattlemen who the ACA can depend on to help with beef promotion and issues management as well as become industry leaders in the future
The YCLP consists of six meetings dispersed across Alabama over the course of a year. The class will be selected by a committee based on applications submitted. Preference will be given to those nominees who are between the ages of 20 & 40, but do not be discouraged to nominate yourself or someone else who falls out of that range.
If you’re interested in the program or would like to nominate someone, find the form in the December issue of the Alabama Cattleman magazine or print the application.