By Tony Parra
Vendors, merchants and organizers were busy on Monday afternoon putting everything in place for the 14th annual New Mexico Ag Expo sponsored by Plateau Wireless and Hamilton Automotive group.
The farming and dairy community of Portales is home to the agricultural showcase every year and this year there will be more than 170 booths with more than 400 exhibitors.
There will be many instructional seminars and demonstrations related to agricultural products, meals, farm equipment and quilts at the Roosevelt County Fairgrounds.
On Monday, people coming in from out of town who were setting up at the fairgrounds said they were enjoying the warm weather and warm people in Portales.
“So far we’ve loved it here,” Tim Gentzler of Beam Works light-weight beams in Tularosa said. “This is our first time here at the ag expo. The weather has been great and the people, here, have been wonderful.”
Gentzler said they will be giving away a 16-foot flat-bed trailer they made with light-weight beams and will be giving away a small weigh scale also in a weight-guessing contest next to the booth.
Gentzler said the 16-foot flat-bed trailer will be raffled off. Tickets are $1 per person and according to Gentzler, proceeds will go towards legislative efforts by the New Mexico Cattlegrowers Association. He said the trailer will be given away on Wednesday afternoon and winners must be present.
That is just one of many prizes which will be given away during the two-day expo. The annual prize at the ag expo is the 16-foot stock trailer. The red stock trailer was provided by Craig Hughes Welding and Trailer sales in Portales.
At the Western Bank booth, people can register to win a $100 gift certificate to Joe’s Boot Shop and Country Junction.
Katia McElhannon of South Cross Farms, a Forco horse-feed supplement dealer, said it is the first time for them to be at the New Mexico Ag Expo. They will also be giving away a 25-pound bucket of horse feed at their booth. They had their booth set up by Monday afternoon.
“Our product is doing very well at Joe’s Boot shop,” McElhannon said. The feed supplement can be purchased at Joe’s Boot Shop. “We thought this would be a good market for our product. This gives us an opportunity to tell people how they can benefit from this product.”
The South Cross Farms/Forco representatives are out of Amarillo, Texas.
Prizes will also be given away during the quilt demonstrations on Tuesday and Wednesday. Linda Custer, one of the organizers, said door prizes will be given away during the demonstrations and shows and people must be present to win.
Custer said local merchants, such as Butterfly Floral, The Print Shop, Garden Source and J J.’s Burgers will be giving away gift certificates and gifts for their favorite quilt.