Another day, another fog delay. We were supposed to get started at West Dubuque at 8:30am, but fog once again pushed our screening back. 

Instead- we drove an hour back to DeWitt where we had the pleasure to spend some time with Patrick Diedrich, his father Steve, and his great uncle, who said we should call him great uncle. When we pulled up they were putting siding on a big building. We got the cameras out and shot some footage of them working together, and followed that with two emotional interviews, first with Patrick, then with his father.

Patrick is going to college, and is weighing his options about working the farm. His Dad misses his son very much, and his emotions were strong when talking about his son. 

Patrick is wise beyond his years and spoke with passion about FFA, and about a desire to one day have a teaching farm he could share with FFA members. 

At 11am, back in the car, we thawed out our hands and drove back North to West Dubuque, where we met up with a really inspiring and knowledgeable ag educator- Matt Lansing. Right after lunch we set up the screen and projector, and packed about 50 young farmers in. This time we tried a new educational method- we stopped the documentary at the end of each section, to talk in small groups about the issues that are raised in the film. The conversations that followed between the local farmers, students and Matt were really thought provoking. We're excited to try this new- more interactive model at future screenings. Thanks to Susan for this great idea :)

After lots of good conversation with Matt and his father Willy, we headed out, to Cedar Rapids. We're staying with a generous family-Steve and Andrea-who are hosting us before even meeting us! Really kind folks, a wonderful family. Iowans continue to extend hospitality and warmth to us on our journey.

Tomorrow we're gearing up for a screening at Coe College. There's rumors of a snowstorm, so we're leery of a third weather-related challenge in as many days... 

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published this page in Ruminations 2012-07-18 10:44:43 -0400