Last week, the National Farm Machinery Show took place at the Kentucky Exposition Center in Louisville — the first time the event has been held since the start of the pandemic. The event’s 56th year ushered in an estimated 255,000 attendees over the course of four days, relatively close to the roughly 300,000 people who show up on typical years.
The National Farm Machinery Show is an event where farmers can see practical and implementable machinery for their farming operations — the production-ready tools more so than merely the “concepts” that other trade shows offer.
“I think that is a very powerful part of why so many people come to the farm show. There’s largely a discussion about items you can implement the next day when you go home,” Ian Cox, Executive Director of Communications for Kentucky Venues, told AGDAILY ahead of the 2022 show.
In all, there were more than 800 exhibiting companies exhibiting on 1.2 million square feet of space, helping lead to a $20.5 million economic impact on the local lodging and restaurant industries.
“From innovative technology on the show floor to educational topics discussed in seminars, this year’s National Farm Machinery Show proved to be an important opportunity for farmers to gain knowledge and prepare for the upcoming planting season. After postponing the 2021 show, it was vital to bring the agriculture industry together to discuss the essential work that goes into providing food for our country and a good part of the world,” said David S. Beck, president and CEO of Kentucky Venues.
Not only is some of the agricultural industry’s most cutting-edge technology on display, the event also put on 20 free seminars with topics ranging from market strategies to drones and other farm tech. And, of course, there was the Championship Tractor Pull and a gift and craft market on site.
Nasty weather swept in the first couple days of the show, with high wind gusts even knocking out power to the Kentucky Exposition Center for upwards of an hour on opening day (to the credit of farmers’ unflappability, there was little slowing the action of the show floor under the emergency lighting). Day 2 followed up with more severe weather, thanks to sustained — and sometimes heavy — rains.
The re-welcoming of the National Farm Machinery Show was a broad success, and the organizers gave everyone a look at how an event could be skillfully put on even two years after the pandemic disrupted life everywhere around us.
The 2023 National Farm Machinery Show takes place next year February 15 to 18 at the Kentucky Exposition Center.