July 15, 2024

MAGIE to observe 40th anniversary

BLOOMINGTON, Ill. — The Midwest Ag Industries Exposition celebrates its 40th anniversary Aug. 25-26 at the McLean County Fairgrounds.

What is now known as the industry’s premier outdoor trade show, MAGIE’s humble beginnings was kicked off by the Illinois Fertilizer and Chemical Association in 1981 at Danville with 20 to 30 exhibitors. It moved to Decatur for a few years before moving to its current location where it has grown to over 100 exhibitors.

“The ride and drive is the jewel of the show because it really does let people get into the cab and actually drive a piece of equipment they might want to buy,” said Kevin Johnson, IFCA president.

“We are the only show in the nation that’s really tied to the fertilizer and chemical industry and what makes us unique is you can get in any new sprayer you want to and actually ride and drive it. We have close to 30 acres available and if you want to drive a new John Deere sprayer, a new RoGator, a new Case IH sprayer, you are able to do that. That makes us different from the Farm Progress Show and any other show out there.”

MAGIE showcases all of the latest and soon-to-be released applicators and technology.

“We’ve heard from a couple different companies that they’re going to reveal some new equipment that’s coming out for the 2022 crop season. So, we’re excited about the new technology, new sprayers and floater that are going to be out in the next 12 months,” Johnson added.

“We have large booths with John Deere, Case IH, Altorfer and AGCO, but then we have smaller exhibitors with technology companies, too. We’ve really grown and been able to expand to bigger booth size and give exhibitors more room to operate.”

The show kicks off at 8 a.m. Wednesday, Aug. 25. Agriculture broadcaster Max Armstrong will be on hand on opening day.

There will also be a celebration that day beginning a 3:15 p.m. honoring Jean Payne, who retired March 31 after 17 years as IFCA president and 23 years with the organization.

The MAGIE show will continue from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Thursday, Aug. 26.

Johnson said that although the show is held in central Illinois, its visitors are from well beyond the Midwest.

“Registration is underway on IFCA.com. We’ve already had someone register from Georgia and Kansas. So, it’s not just Midwest ag. It’s tied to the fertilizer and chemical industry and all the products they use day to day,” Johnson said.

“We think there may also be some international visitors because this is held the week before the Farm Progress Show. Usually when the Farm Progress Show is held in Illinois we have some international visitors that come to the show to look at all of the new exciting products that are out there.”

Pre-registration on the IFCA website is recommended, but visitors can also register at the show.

“With COVID restrictions we’re trying to get people to register early so we won’t have lines for those registering at the show,” Johnson said. “This show is both farmers and industry representatives. Everyone is welcome to come to see the latest and greatest in the retail world.”

Tom Doran

Tom C. Doran

Field Editor