Bargfrede grows up helping on family farm

Wednesday, June 6, 2012
Taylor Bargfrede of rural Alma, bales hay for an area farmer as part of his Diversified Agriculture Production Proficiency Award. He is one of six Santa Fe High School students who received the State FFA Degree this year.

Taylor Bargfrede grew up wanting to be an FFA member, so when he was a freshman at Santa Fe High School, he joined the organization.

"My brother was in it, and I always had to go to all his events when he got all his degrees, so that's what I wanted to do too," he said.

This April, Bargfrede, the son of Larry and Terri Bargfrede or rural Alma, earned his own State FFA Degree at the Missouri FFA Convention in Columbia.

Today he would recommend joining FFA to incoming freshman.

"It is a good program. It helps with lots of things including leadership and talking in front of people," he said. "You get to spend time with your friends and meet new people."

He has grown up helping and living on the family crop and livestock farm located west of Alma.

He helps with various chores, including checking cattle, working ground, helping during harvest, and cleaning grain bins.

He also helps a local hog farmer, giving vaccinations to the pigs once and month and washing the barns.

His work hours vary, but often include late nights during harvest.

"Through harvest as soon as I get out of school until 10, 11 or 12 p.m.," he said.

He also puts in long hours in the summer and on weekends.

"Dad makes sure I'm up to go help him," he said. "If he doesn't have anything to do, he can usually find something for me to do around there."

His various jobs have taught him a lot about farming, including all the responsibilities and hard work.

Being an FFA member has also taught him to "not be scared or worried about meeting new people."

Bargfrede has many favorite FFA activities, including trap shooting, where he got second in state his sophomore year. The team has qualified for state each year.

He also enjoyed celebrating FFA week each year.

"That was always fun, going bowling, and wearing different outfits every day of the week," he said.

Besides being a member of the trap-shooting team, he also participated as a member of the Career Development Event ag mechanics team which qualified for state his sophomore year. As a freshman, he was on the poultry team.

Bargfrede is vice-president of his senior class, serves as an usher at Trinity Lutheran and is a volunteer fireman in Alma.

His hobbies include farming and spending time with friends and family.

Next year he will be attending Grand River Technical School in Chillicothe for the diesel mechanics program.

"I'll do the one year for sure, then I might do the second year there or try to go to a different college," he said. "Hopefully once I get out of college, I'll come back to the farm and take over the family farm."