A Look Back at Big Iron 2020

Big Iron Farm Show

For the past four decades, The Big Iron Farm Show has displayed a commitment to the agriculture industry and its importance to our region. From September 15-17, The Big Iron Farm Show celebrated its 40th anniversary at the Red River Valley Fairgrounds in West Fargo.

Big Iron was founded when a group of local agribusiness- in 1980 at the North Dakota State University Agronomy Farm near Casselton, N.D. Only ten companies participated, but more than 1,200 people attended – nearly triple the number of attendees the organizers anticipated.

To account for this popularity, the second year’s event took place at the Red River Valley Fairgrounds, with about 100 companies participating and 10,000 people attending. The other big change in the show’s second year came with being officially branded as “Big Iron,” rather than the original, lengthy title “the Red River Agribusiness Equipment and Service Exposition.”

While this event has shifted and grown over the decades, a few things remain steadfast:

1) Free admission,

2) the three-day duration and

3) a requirement that all exhibits must be ag-related.

As a publication, Future Farmer is in our first year of business, but we recognize and celebrate the legacy Big Iron as left and will continue to create. We here at Spotlight and Future Farmer Magazine had the honor of being the day sponsor for the first day of the event this year. Here’s what we saw and experienced:

  • Over 25,000 attendees
  • Starting in 1980, this year marked the 40th anniversary of the Big Iron Farm Show
  • After its first year, Big Iron moved from Casselton to West Fargo
  • Exhibits were spaced out over 350 acres
  • Over 400 exhibitors from around the country attended 
  • Original Big Iron posters by artist Wayne Grindberg were on display, commemorating the big anniversary 
  • Missed out this year? Mark your calendars for next year’s Big Iron: September 14–16, 2021.

What do you think?

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