This year marked the National Farm Machinery Show’s Golden Anniversary – 50 years of showcasing the latest and greatest farm equipment and technology.
Rick Rippetoe, president and CEO of the Kentucky State Fair Board, says he expected this year's attendance could very well top 300,000. It was an ambitious goal – last year’s attendance was around 294,000, and the all-time high was just over 312,000.
But people came in droves, and NFMS saw its second-highest attendance ever, at 310,589 attendees.
"This is a celebration year," he says. "Anything that lasts 50 years is iconic."
The show began in 1963 as an electricity demo and exhibit in Lexington, Ky., but quickly gained momentum and found itself needing more space. In 1966, the show came to the then-called Kentucky Fair and Exposition Center as the newly named NFMS. Today, NFMS is recognized as the largest indoor farm show in the U.S. The eight interconnected exhibit halls total more than 1.2 million square feet of indoor exhibit space, occupied by more than 850 agricultural displays.
In conjunction with the NFMS, the 47th Championship Tractor Pull also saw increased attendance over last year, with more than 66,000 in attendance.
Planning is already underway for next year’s event, which is scheduled for Feb. 10-13 in Louisville.
This year's National Farm Machinery Show ran Feb. 11-14 in Louisville, Ky. Visit http://www.agweb.com/national-farm-machinery-show/ for complete event coverage.