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Farm life, in miniature, on display, in displays

PINE PLAINS —  If you’re a fan of intricate miniature scenery, contests of strength, or collectibles, look no further than the 29th annual Farm Toy Show and Auction, hosted by the Pine Plains FFA (Future Farmers of America).

Taking place on Saturday, March 18, and opening its doors at 9 a.m. at the Stissing Mountain High School’s gymnasium, the event will be an opportunity for the agricultural community to come out and forge bonds across generations. To Stephanie Rhoades, FFA advisor and agriculture teacher at Stissing Mountain, that’s what makes it such a fun space.

“It’s cool to see people engage with a hobby that fosters a sense of community.  . . . It spans generations. But it’s also for anyone interested in agriculture, or interested in browsing things for the sake of browsing, or buying your kids a toy tractor, or seeing an incredibly detailed farm diorama!”

Part of an ongoing national yearly circuit of farm toy shows, vendors from far and wide within New York state, and perhaps beyond, will peddle their wares at the event. Come noon, young folks will compete in the pedal tractor pull in competition with their classmates. At 2 p.m., the auction will begin, in which collectibles, toys and more will be sold to benefit the Pine Plains FFA.

The chapter has approximately 30 students from sixth to 12th grade in its membership, and the Toy Show and Auction is a part of the yearly cycle of fundraising to support Pine Plains FFA programming. The event has been on hold since 2019 due to COVID-19 restrictions.

The day will also feature food booths, and a host of miniature farm scenes on display, built with care by local farmers and farm enthusiasts. The dioramas will be given awards through the day based on their quality and intricacy.

Stissing Mountain High School is located at 2829 Church St, Route 199. Admission is $3, and free for children under age 5. All proceeds from the event benefit the Pine Plains FFA.

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