Lighting it up at the Parade of Lights

New Ulm FFA runs two floats through the Parade of Lights.
The second tractor and float in the parade driven by Kolbe Platz.
The second tractor and float in the parade driven by Kolbe Platz.
Kolbe Platz

It took two school days, hundreds of zip-ties, many headaches, and 25 bales thrown. It also took two generators and many outlets splitting left or right to get power to the floats. Many hours were spent washing and waxing the tractors and rigging up lights.

The New Ulm FFA loves to drive through the parades and spread cheer and joy to others. Along with making memories with each other and seeing faces that they know. New Ulm FFA loves to go a step further and bring in tractors which brings even more joy to people and many old folk.

New Ulm FFA has been in the Parade of Lights annually for the past couple of years, despite the cold weather everyone loves to come along for the ride. FFA tends to drive tractors through the parade because so many people have become disconnected from their food source and FFA tries to reunite the people with their food source in any little way possible. “It’s fun to see FFA work as a team to make the floats and to watch joy come to people’s faces when they see a tractor drive through the parade,” said Andrew Hellendrung, President of the New Ulm FFA.

The first tractor and float brought through the parade by Andrew Hellendrung with Cody Serbus riding along. (Kolbe Platz)

Although the floats looked good and had a good amount of lights on it took a lot of time and hard work. It took two days of school at lunch to get the lights on them even having to take all of the lights off once. 

Even on the day of the parade, we were redoing the hay racks. Tucker, the New Ulm FFA Historian, had said a couple of times that it was gonna be the day of the parade and the floats were gonna have to be redone once again. There were even problems on the way down to the parade with the flags and the trees leaning and falling over. “It was really kind of a nightmare on the way to the parade with everything tipping over and a lot of the stuff wasn’t even hooked up right,” said Tucker.

Without all the struggles with the floats everyone along had a good time and did a lot of hard work cleaning tractors but enjoyed doing it and enjoyed doing it for a good cause. The FFA members truly will not forget this moment in time when they got to light up everybody’s faces with joy.

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