Nixon thanks supporters at ham breakfast

PHOT+BY+MATT+BIRD-MEYER+%2F+FACULTY+ADVISER%0AFrom+left%2C+Attorney+General+Chris+Koster+and+Democratic+candidate+for+governor%2C+speaks+with+Gov.+Jay+Nixon+Thursday+outside+of+the+Director%E2%80%99s+Tent+during+the+Missouri+State+Fair+Governor%E2%80%99s+Ham+Breakfast+in+Sedalia.

PHOT BY MATT BIRD-MEYER / FACULTY ADVISER From left, Attorney General Chris Koster and Democratic candidate for governor, speaks with Gov. Jay Nixon Thursday outside of the Director’s Tent during the Missouri State Fair Governor’s Ham Breakfast in Sedalia.

Written by Muleskinner Staff

By MATT BIRD-MEYER
Faculty Adviser
(SEDALIA, Mo., digitalBURG) — In a short, 10-minute address, Gov. Jay Nixon used his final appearance at the Missouri State Fair Governor’s Ham Breakfast Thursday to trace hardship and recovery across the state and to tout the overall strength of the state’s agriculture industry.

PHOTO BY MATT BIRD-MEYER / FACULTY ADVISER Gov. Jay Nixon answers questions from journalists following his speech Thursday during the Missouri State Fair Governor’s Ham Breakfast in Sedalia.
PHOTO BY MATT BIRD-MEYER / FACULTY ADVISER
Gov. Jay Nixon answers questions from journalists following his speech Thursday during the Missouri State Fair Governor’s Ham Breakfast in Sedalia.

“I’ve had an honored life to be governor of the best state in the world,” Nixon said. “To get the opportunity to travel around the state to small towns, big towns, farms, factories, schools and colleges. And everywhere people have treated us with respect. They supported us when we needed their help and in tougher times more came together.”
More than 1,000 people filled the Director’s Tent at the northeast corner of the fairgrounds, with pockets of people spilling outside to continue talking with local and statewide candidates and the media. T-shirts proclaiming “Blunt Brigade,” the ubiquitous red hat from the Trump campaign, campaign tour buses, and yard signs and oversized posters for numerous candidates were in abundance.
“The turnout is tremendous,” said state Rep. Denny Hoskins, of Warrensburg, who is running for District 21 state senator in November. “I always tell people this is the one event in Missouri that if you want to meet all the statewide and local Democrat, Republican, Libertarian candidates you can meet them all right here this morning.”
State Sen. David Pearce, of Warrensburg, said the Ham Breakfast is a good opportunity for legislators to reunite following the close of session in May.
PHOTO BY MATT BIRD-MEYER / FACULTY ADVISER From left, state Sen. David Pearce, of Warrensburg, visits with UCM President Chuck Ambrose and Deborah Curtis, provost and chief learning officer, on Thursday during the Missouri State Fair Governor’s Ham Breakfast in Sedalia.
PHOTO BY MATT BIRD-MEYER / FACULTY ADVISER
From left, state Sen. David Pearce, of Warrensburg, visits with UCM President Chuck Ambrose and Deborah Curtis, provost and chief learning officer, on Thursday during the Missouri State Fair Governor’s Ham Breakfast in Sedalia.

“So, it’s a great place where a lot of people get together, kind of renew acquaintances and see what’s going on this summer,” he said. “And it’s a who’s who of politics, not just agriculture, but you can see everyone who is running statewide and, especially in our area, a lot of locals show up as well.”
Completing his second term in office, Nixon cannot run for re-election due to term limits. During his speech, the governor recalled the floods and drought that devastated many parts of the state in 2009, 2011 and 2012. He said the drought in 2012 led to hay and water shortages that forced some farmers to sell their herds.
“So we got to work,” Nixon said. “And in just a matter of days we put together a rapid response program to help farmers and ranchers drill or deepen wells to get water to crops and livestock. And in 90 days we completed 5,000 projects in all corners of our state. We put wells in there. We put water in there that’s still there today.”
He also praised the bipartisan bill he signed last year to create the Missouri Dairy Scholars program. The program offers 80 scholarships of $5,000 each for students pursuing agriculture degrees in exchange for agreeing to work in the Missouri agriculture industry for at least two years for every year they receive the scholarship.
“I got to meet two of the first students that were going to get the $5,000 dairy scholarship at universities in our state,” Nixon said. “We’re making plans for the future by investing in two things that pay off – agriculture and education.”
The governor praised the record yields produced by Missouri corn and soybean farmers. And he boasted that in his first seven years as governor, the state has completed $6.8 million in capital projects at the Missouri State Fair.
“We’re investing back into the state,” Nixon said, adding that youth participation at the fair is strong. “There are more than 30,000 entries by students here and more than 4,000 exhibits.”
He joked that in 149 days he will regain his full First Amendment rights.
PHOT BY MATT BIRD-MEYER / FACULTY ADVISER From left, Attorney General Chris Koster and Democratic candidate for governor, speaks with Gov. Jay Nixon Thursday outside of the Director’s Tent during the Missouri State Fair Governor’s Ham Breakfast in Sedalia.
PHOTO BY MATT BIRD-MEYER / FACULTY ADVISER
From left, Attorney General Chris Koster and Democratic candidate for governor, speaks with Gov. Jay Nixon Thursday outside of the Director’s Tent during the Missouri State Fair Governor’s Ham Breakfast in Sedalia.

“But we will never lose our deep love for this state,” Nixon said, “our deep respect for the people in this community here, the agriculture community. And our sincere thanks to you. The way you welcomed us into your lives inspired us to work together to make this great state even greater.”
Prior to the governor’s speech, a variety of items were auctioned, including prize hams and bacon, to benefit youth scholarships and fair improvements.

  • Grand Champion Ham: exhibited by Quynten Cary, of California, Missouri, purchased for $7,000 by Murphy Brothers Exposition and Ditzfeld Container & Trash Service and donated to the Missouri 4-H Club.
  • Reserve Grand Champion Ham: exhibited by Deb Cary, of California, Missouri, purchased for $7,000 by KCP&L and donated to the Missouri FFA.
  • Grand Champion Bacon: exhibited by Center Locker, of Center, Missouri, purchased by Starline Brass for $7,500 and donated to the Missouri FFA.
  • Pie baked by first lady Georganne Nixon: purchased by Starline Brass for $5,000 to benefit an agriculture education endowment.
  • Commemorative belt buckle: purchased by Jim Mathewson for $1,100
  • Henry rifle: donated by FCS Financial, purchased for $10,000 by Starline Brass with the proceeds benefiting the Missouri 4-H Club.

Editor’s Note: This version of the story has been updated to include additional details regarding the auction and corrects the name for Ditzfeld Container & Trash Service.