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For Immediate Release: March 30, 2005 Contact:

Lynne Richmond

(TRENTON) –The Burlington Center Mall will be alive and blooming April 8 through 10 as members of the New Jersey FFA Association -- an educational organization for students enrolled in high school Agriculture, Food and Natural Resources Education programs -- kick-off the 28th annual three-day New Jersey FFA Horticultural Exposition. All entries are created by Agriculture, Food, and Natural Resources Education students and will be showcased on both floors of the mall.

Students from 24 schools from across New Jersey will gather to compete for prizes in three divisions – Horticulture, Arrangement and Permanent. More than 500 entries have been registered, and floral industry experts will determine the winners of each class, as well as choose a Best of Division for each.

An FFA Floral Design career development event, sponsored by the New Jersey Florists’ Association, will be held for students at 10 a.m. Friday. Students will be provided with floral materials to create two floral arrangements and asked to calculate the retail cost of each arrangement based on the costs of labor, materials and supplies. Arrangements from the FFA Floral Design competition will then be donated to the Masonic Home in Burlington.

Agriculture, Food and Natural Resources Education is a systematic program of instruction available to students interested in learning about the science, business, and technology of the agricultural industry. A complete Agricultural Education program is composed of three components: classroom/laboratory instruction, individual supervised agricultural experience (SAE) projects, and FFA, which focuses on leadership, personal and career development. More information is available on the web at www.state.nj.us/agriculture/rural/ag_education.htm.

The New Jersey FFA Association, in the New Jersey Department of Agriculture, has nearly 1700 members statewide, who are preparing for careers and leadership in the agriculture industry.

The New Jersey FFA Horticultural Exposition will take place beginning at 10 a.m. Friday, April 8 through Sunday, April 10 at the Burlington Center Mall in Burlington Township, NJ.