“We’re back and we’re ready.”
Those were the words of Darren and Tana Dale this week when the 10th annual Great Bend Farm, Ranch & Hemp Expo opened at the Great Bend Expo Complex west of town. The Dales are owners of Star Expos, which brings the event to Great Bend every year. It is dubbed the largest farm event in the United States dedicated to promoting agricultural technology.
At an opening ceremony Wednesday, Great Bend's mayor, city administrator and Chamber of Commerce director were on hand to welcome the huge trade show back, live and in person. Last year’s expo was entirely online because of the COVID-19 pandemic.
“This is the first microphone I think I’ve held in two years,” said Darren Dale. “I just want to think everybody for being here today.”
The show continues until 7 p.m. Thursday, and then Friday, April 9 is the final day of the show. It will be open from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. at the Expo. Virtual presentations can be seen online at virtualfarmexpo.com/greatbend/live.php.
Admission is free and there are hundreds of exhibitors.
Friday’s schedule of presentations includes Dr. Tom Noffsinger’s cattle handling presentations at 10 a.m. and 1 p.m.; the Great American Tractor Showdown at noon; Anthony Zukoff from K-State on Alfalfa Weevil Insecticide Resistance at 1 p.m.; Jared Slagle and guests with seminars and forums on the Expo 3 stage all day; and Daniel Meeske Horse Training demos in Expo 3 all day. The beer garden opens at 11 a.m.