The nation's largest outdoor farm show
is moving to a semi-permanent facility to reduce the risk of weather
disruptions and to provide show visitors and exhibitors with
additional facilities and exhibit features.
The show's move to this semi-permanent
location includes extensive site development to provide upgraded
facilities for show visitors and exhibitors. The show will alternate
from year to year between the Decatur site and an Iowa location. In
the past, the show rotated annually between Illinois, Indiana and
The Illinois-Indiana semi-permanent
site search was narrowed to four finalist locations earlier this
"Several prime Illinois and Indiana
sites were considered for the show's semi-permanent, shared
Illinois-Indiana location," said Don Tourte, director of national
business development for Farm Progress Companies. "Our goal was to
select a site that gives us the opportunity to provide world-class
facilities and easy access for exhibitors and visitors. And we have
done that," he said.
The show site will have easy driving
access for visitors from all compass directions. Decatur is located
35 miles southwest of Champaign on Interstate 72 (from Interstate 74
in Indiana). Additionally, Illinois Route 48 and U.S. Route 51
provide primary access to the show site.
"The 52nd annual show will emphasize
the show's continued dedication to progress by showcasing
agriculture's innovations, information and technology in one of the
nation's richest agricultural areas," Tourte said.
"Also, this is the first show held at
an Illinois-Indiana location with the show scheduled one month
earlier than usual," he said. The show dates were moved at visitors'
and exhibitors' requests to avoid late-September's peak harvest-time
The permanent show site will be
comprised of 640 acres for exhibits and field demonstrations. The
former "Tent City" exhibit area will be renamed "Progress City" for
its permanent location as the venue's focal point. More than 200
acres of established sod will be used for primary visitor parking,
plus adjacent fields are available for overflow.
The site will be
developed in a manner similar to an industrial park -- providing
electricity, telephone lines and drainage. Two cellular towers less
than two miles from the show site will be upgraded during the show
to provide additional line availability for cellular telephones.
More than 12,500
hotel rooms are located within 45 minutes of the show site in
Decatur and nearby communities of Springfield, Bloomington-Normal
[to top of second column in
College will close for the show and make campus facilities available
for show use, as needed. Classrooms and an auditorium could be used
for seminars and related events. The college's nursing and health
wing will serve as the show's medical facility.
The Farm Progress
Show is the nation's leading outdoor farm show and features the most
extensive state-of-the-art information and technology available for
today's agricultural producers with the latest agricultural
equipment, products and services.
The annual gathering
represents a tradition of rural community building with its
educational offerings and has hosted many political leaders. Most
recently, President George W. Bush visited the 2004 show near Alleman, Iowa. The country's top agribusinesses plus many regional
and local manufacturers and suppliers are regular exhibitors. The
Farm Progress Show has been the blueprint for other farm shows that
have been started around the country.
The show's 50th
anniversary was in 2003 near Henning, north of Danville, near
the site where the first show took place in 1953.
Prairie Farmer and
Indiana Prairie Farmer are the new site's show host publications. Wallaces Farmer is the Iowa site host publication. The Farm Progress
Show is owned by Farm Progress Companies, located in Carol Stream.
About Farm Progress Companies
Companies Inc. is the largest U.S. media company serving the
agricultural market. The company's division headquartered in the
suburban Chicago area publishes state, regional and national farm
publications, such as Prairie Farmer, Nebraska Farmer and Farm
Futures, a nationally circulated publication for high-volume
producers. The division operates five farm trade shows, including
the Farm Progress Show and Husker Harvest Days. Additionally, this
division provides marketing services, including database, market
research and custom publishing.
Additionally, Farm Progress' Minnetonka,
Minn., division publishes Feedstuffs, the weekly newspaper serving
U.S. and international agribusiness decision-makers involved in
animal agriculture, as well as Tack 'n Togs, the leading magazine
serving equestrian retailers. Farm Progress is wholly owned by Rural
Press Limited. Rural Press, headquartered in New South Wales,
Australia, which also operates agricultural and consumer media,
printing and tradeshow businesses in Australia and New Zealand.
Progress news release]