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Dear Block and Bridle Members and Advisors,

Iowa State University is honored to host the 100th National Block and Bridle Convention. The convention will take place April 2-5, 2020 in Ames, Iowa. Almost 30 students of the Iowa State University Block and Bridle Chapter have been working diligently since 2018 to create a fun, educational, and memorable convention! With this convention being extremely exciting and meaningful as the National Block and Bridle Club celebrates its centennial, we could not be prouder as a charter chapter to host this special celebration. We will provide national members with opportunities for professional development through guest speakers, workshops, and going on industry tours to experience Iowa agriculture. 

As planning is underway, we will continue to keep you updated via social media until registration opens in January. Coming together for this event will give you the opportunity to connect with students and industry professionals from across the nation as we continue to focus on the future of animal agriculture. We cannot wait for you all to join us in the spring. In the meantime, check out our schedule of events, list of tours, and everything you can expect to experience as we commemorate the 100th National Block and Bridle Convention on our website and social media pages. Come experience how we celebrate a Heritage in the Heartland!


2020 National Block and Bridle Convention Tri-Chair Executive Team & Planning Committee



Thursday - 12:00 PM

Registration will begin at 12:00 p.m. It will close at 6:00 p.m.


4:00 PM


The etiquette dinner is optional and must be RSVP'd for ahead of time. Dress for this event will be business professional.

6:00 PM

Registration will close promptly at 6:00 p.m.


6:00 PM


Welcome to the official start of the 100th National Convention! Dress for the opening session will be business casual (no jeans). Attendees are welcome to wear their school colors! It will feature keynote speaker, Jim Olson.

8 - 8:45 PM

Experience a Taste of Iowa at our Dessert Social!


9:00 PM

Dress will be casual.


Friday - 5:30 - 8:00 AM


Tours will depart at different times. Information on when your tour leaves will be included in your registration packet. Breakfast will be available.

6 PM

All tours will be return to the Hansen Agriculture Learning Center by 6:00 p.m.


6:30 PM


Food trucks will be parked at Hansen Agriculture Learning Center. Tyler Geiger will be performing and there will be games and fun activities.

Saturday - 7 - 7:45 AM

Breakfast will be served at the hotel.


8:00 AM


Kick off Saturday morning with a motivational speech from Dr. Brett Kaysen! Dress for Saturday will be business professional.

9:10 AM

Breakout sessions will last 50 minutes with 10 minute breaks in between.


12:15 PM

Lunch will be served at the hotel.


1:15 PM

Hear from body language expert, Jan Hargrave!


2:45 PM


This will be a time for attendees to socialize and reflect on their time at convention so far. There will also be time to write Thank You notes for sponsors, tour hosts and other convention supporters. The Thank You note will serve as your ticket into the banquet!

3:15 PM

Learn more about advocating for agriculture from Trent Loos!


6:30 PM

Dress for the banquet will be business professional.


9 PM

Kick back and enjoy the last night of convention at the dance! Dress will be casual.


Sunday - 7 - 8:00 AM

Breakfast will available at the hotel.





Embark on a trip to northwest Iowa to Rule Sheep Company, a sheep operation that maintains over 500 ewes, a research facility, and show lambs.  TransOva Genetics offers various services, including work with IVF, sexed-semen, genetic preservation, and cloning for dairy, beef, and small ruminants.  Finally, Wells Blue Bunny is the ice cream capital of the world and has over 70 unique and popular flavors to try! This trip will satisfy your taste buds and peak your interest in several ruminant species.


Get ready to head northeast as Lynch Livestock provides high quality pork products and focuses on consumer demands in the current swine industry.  Next, is WW Homestead Dairy where over 90 years in the dairy industry has helped them to make their mark by letting people enjoy products including cream-line milk (non-homogenized), over 30 flavors of ice cream, cheese, and butter!  Finally, you will head to Shrimptastic to see a more unique aspect of Iowa agriculture where they grow and sell Pacific White shrimp. Go on the northeast tour to learn about how your meat and dairy products are grown and processed!


Keep heading north to Couser Cattle Company, a family farm started in 1889 with over 5,000 head of feedlot cattle.  Then, head to Backcountry Winery to see the vineyards and view their wide array of homemade wines housed inside a nearly century old barn. After, take a turn and head to the USDA National Animal Disease Center to learn about the diverse number of research projects performed there - both past and present. Finally, get excited to see the many poultry breeds and the 26,000 square foot facility at the Murray McMurray Hatchery, which was founded in 1917 and distributes chicks all over the United States.  From family farms to research operations, see how science is implemented in all forms during this tour!



Head to the heart of Iowa to Nichols Cryo Genetics to view some of the industry leading bulls and learn more about their on-site collection technology with storage and shipping of semen and embryos across the country. At the National Pork Board you will see the marketing, research, and education aspects of their organization and history of the pork industry along with the Pork Checkoff program.  John Deere has been supplying equipment to farmers since 1837, and you have the opportunity to see their innovative machinery. Regardless of the industry, you will see how these companies provide services with novel technologies to assist farmers in running a profitable business!


Hear the guns go off and get ready to run to Prairie Meadows to see the magnificent race horses along with the one-mile racetrack. Then, be ready to tour Voss Angus to see their sale ring, barns, and elite Angus cattle.  You will get an inside look at how the family runs their operation and annual sales. Finally, head to the facilities of Hawkeye Breeders and learn about how they can provide cattle operations with bull semen collection, fertility testing, and shipping to all over the world.  If you are interested in beef cattle and the thrilling sport of horse racing, then embark on a trip around central Iowa!


Let’s go eastbound and down to visit Iowa Premium, where the procurement and processing of corn-fed Black Angus showcases itself with their prime cuts, line of boxed beef products, and byproducts for domestic and international customers. At Kent you will learn about their nutrition products and services for livestock, lifestyle animals, and pets. Vermeer is an equipment manufacturer for farms world-wide and are now working to help feed and fuel the world.  Animal agriculture is a full circle industry and this tour gives a taste of three parts to raising livestock!


Head west to see the production of rye transformed into whiskey.  By visiting Templeton Rye you will have the ability to see the distillery and the finishing, creating, and bottling of various products. Next, Sullivan Supply is an innovative leader in the stock show world, and you will get an insight on their products and equipment at their new Iowa facility! Then, see how Corteva Agriscience assists farmers by using digital technology, seed treatments, and more to move the world of farming to an innovative future.  If you are interested in crop technology, byproducts, or show stock, the southwest tour is the place for you!



Opening session keynote

Originally from LeMars, Iowa, Jim earned his B.A. in mathematics and economics and his J.D. in international law, both from the University of Iowa. In the U.S. Navy, he attained rank of Lieutenant Commander. 
Jim was a career officer in the Directorate of Operations of the Central Intelligence Agency, serving mostly overseas in clandestine operations. He served as Chief of Counterintelligence at CIA Headquarters in Langley, Virginia. He has had overseas assignments in the U.S.S.R., Austria, and Mexico. Jim speaks French, German, Russian, and Spanish.
He is a recipient of the Intelligence Medal of Merit, the Distinguished Career Intelligence Medal, the Counterintelligence Excellence Medal, the Donovan Award, and several distinguished achievement awards.  He was awarded the Silver Star Award at the Bush School for excellence in teaching.
Jim was assigned by the CIA to the George Bush School of Government and Public Service in College Station, Texas, as an officer-in-residence in December 1997. While there, he taught courses on intelligence, counterintelligence, and national security and was a frequent guest lecturer at other courses, conferences, and symposia. He was appointed a permanent faculty member of the Bush School in August 2000. Jim is now serving as a Professor of the Practice.
Jim is the author of “The Ten Commandments of Counterintelligence,” “Fair Play: The Moral Dilemmas of Spying,” and “To Catch a Spy: The Art of Counterintelligence.” His outside interests include church, tennis, bicycling, foreign languages, history, literature and he is an avid baseball fan.


Registration files are now available for download! They must be postmarked by Feb. 10. Registration cost will be $195 per person. Please complete one registration form per attendee and one chapter summary for your chapter.

The registration fee covers all meals, desserts and snacks needed throughout convention as well as a complimentary goodie bag, guided tours and transportation costs during convention.

ISU Block and Bridle Mailing Address: 120 Kildee Hall 806 Stange Rd. Ames, IA 50011

A late fee of $50 per person will be charged for any registration postmarked Feb. 11 - 20. No registration will be accepted after Feb. 20.
The only payment methods we can receive are by checks or cash, no credit card or online payments will be allowed (according to university rules). Please make checks payable to: ISU Block and Bridle Club




Etiquette Dinner
Sign up now for the etiquette dinner on Thursday at 4:00 p.m. Registration will be first come first serve so don't wait! Cost will be an additional $35 per person. If you have any questions please contact isuconvention2020@gmail.com
Apr 02, 4:00 PM
Scheman Building,
290 Scheman Building # 2, Ames, IA 50011, USA


2601 E 13th St, Ames, IA 50010

515 - 232 - 9260




If the Quality Inn & Suites is full, here are the following hotels we recommend contacting to make reservations. There is a difference in price between the hotels, so we will leave that decision up to your chapter. All these hotels are within a 5 minute drive to the convention headquarters. 

Holiday Inn Express & Suites Ames

Address: 2600 E 13th St, Ames, IA 50010

Phone: (515) 232-2300

Fairfield Inn & Suites by Marriott Ames

Address: 2137 Isaac Newton Dr, SE 16th St, Ames, IA 50010

Phone: (515) 232-4000

TownePlace Suites by Marriott Ames

Address: 1523 S Dayton Pl, Ames, IA 50010

Phone: (515) 232-5500

Microtel Inn & Suites by Wyndham Ames

Address: 2216 SE 16th St, Ames, IA 50010

Phone: (888) 293-6315

AmericInn by Wyndham, Ames

Address: 2507 SE 16th St, Ames, IA 50010

Phone: (515) 233-1005

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