Eighty FFA students from Sedro Wooley to White Salmon joined the Elma FFA for its third annual Logging Rodeo. Elma brought home a second-place finish and five students earned top prizes in individual competition.
Events at the Dec. 1 competition hosted by the Elma Agricultural Boosters included the ax throw, log toss, log chop, pole climb, choker setting, match split, cross cut sawing, wrapper toss and chainsaw operation. Sedro Wooley earned first place overall.
“This event has grown over the last three years, and it is a great opportunity for kids to learn something they may never have been exposed to, while enjoying some fun competition,” said Jerry Bailey, Elma Ag Boosters president and Port Blakely forester. “The timber industry has been an important part of the Pacific Northwest for over 150 years. Logging sports have been a part of that history for just as long. Although some techniques have changed most of the events are still relevant today.”
The competition is a fundraiser for the Elma boosters. “It was a wonderful turnout, we are very excited to see so many kids compete,” said Jill Carter, boosters treasurer and Logging Rodeo Chairman. “The Elma Ag Boosters would like to thank all of our sponsors for their support over the last three years. We have raised thousands of dollars to give scholarships to many hard-working, fine young men and women of the Elma FFA. We would also like to thank all our volunteers that help set up, judge and tear down the event, so much hard work is put in by so many, for such a good cause.”
Connor Custis led the Elma boy’s team, placing fifth overall with first in the ax throw, third in choker setting, and third in log carry with James Davis. Zack Holcomb placed ninth overall with fifth place in small chainsaw, fifth in ax throw, first in match split, and fourth in log carry. Kyle McDougal was 10th overall with second in match split and fourth in small chainsaw. Logan Heironymus placed second in ax throw and fifth in log carry; Steven Aldrich placed first in log toss; Matthew Nelson second in log chop; James Davis fourth in log chop and third in log carry; Patrick Julian fourth in log carry and fifth in match split; Wyatt Carter first in wrapper toss and fifth in log carry; Wyatt Gray fifth on large chainsaw; Walker Reever third on ax throw; and Trevor Clark on choker setting. Other Elma FFA participants included Cody Fitzsimmons, Tait Bentley, Jake Davis and William Tangen.
The Elma FFA girls placed in several events assisting with the overall team score. Angie Patton led the girls with a second place overall finish. She captured second in log toss, second in wrapper toss, first in large chainsaw, fourth in small chainsaw, and fourth in ax throw. Raelene Darnell placed sixth overall, first in log toss, first in log chop, and fourth in Jill/Jill cross cut. Tiana Cox was ninth overall, first in match split, third in pole climb and fifth in Jill/Jill cross cut. Stefanie Cristelli placed fourth in log toss; Colby Trusty third in match split and fourth in Jill/Jill cross cut; and Paige Kershaw fourth in log chop and fifth in Jill/Jill cross cut. Dallas Trusty, Shalee Swint, and Kortney Bailey of Elma also competed.
Sponsors are: Port Blakely Tree Farms, Murphy Veneer, Skarperud Timber, Steve Smythe Country Financial, WCLA, SPI, Buck’s Logging, Hamilton Rocking & Contracting, Willis Enterprises, Bob Rogers, RL Smith Logging, NW Hardwoods, Ken’s Kutting, Inc., Jack Dilley Logging and LeMay, Inc.