Farm Progress Show returns to Illinois

Corn Belt Energy’s Evan Reynolds shows his dexterity on a utility pole during a pole climbing demonstration.

Illinois’ electric cooperatives connected with thousands of individuals at the nation’s largest outdoor farm event. Held Aug. 29-31, this year marked the 70th anniversary of the Farm Progress Show at Progress City in Decatur and attracted around 163,000 visitors. The show connects farmers with hundreds of exhibitors and industry experts. It alternates between its two permanent locations in Decatur and Boone, Iowa.

Representatives from 12 of Illinois’ Touchstone Energy cooperatives were on hand to share information about electric co-ops, safety and energy efficiency. The Illinois electric cooperatives’ tent featured a variety of activities including live line safety and pole climbing demonstrations, as well as electric vehicles and a photo booth.

Cooperative members who presented their Co-op Connections card or app on their smart device received a special gift. Those visiting in the morning had the chance to see the Touchstone Energy hot air balloon flying the American flag over Progress City.

Participating electric co-ops included Coles-Moultrie Electric Cooperative, Corn Belt Energy Corporation, Eastern Illini Electric Cooperative, EnerStar Electric Cooperative, Illinois Electric Cooperative, Jo-Carroll Energy, M.J.M. Electric Cooperative, Menard Electric Cooperative, Norris Electric Cooperative, Rural Electric Convenience Cooperative, Shelby Electric Cooperative and Southwestern Electric Cooperative.