Next week you may notice a little extra aroma in Wisconsin’s dairy air.
The North American Manure Expo is returning to Wisconsin, where it started 16 years ago. At last, the continent’s lords of incontinence, its excremental experts, are returning to a sacred scatological site.
Arlington will host the expo next Tuesday and Wednesday, drawing manure haulers, farmers, and handlers of solid and liquid manure. Be careful with whom you shake hands.
Held annually at sites across the American Midwest and Canada, the expo is coming to Wisconsin for the first time since 2012. It’s fitting that the event is returning, as it got its start in Prairie du Sac in 2001. Remember, that community hosts the world’s premier annual exhibition of meadow muffin projection, the Wisconsin State Cow Chip Throw. The manure expo is coming back where it belongs: When it comes to No. 2, Wisconsin is No. 1.
The expo combines an industry trade show, manure technology demonstrations and educational events. You know, for people who don’t know poop.
I kid. In fact, the event draws global experts. It began when manure applicators asked the University of Wisconsin to provide side-by-side comparisons of agitation and application equipment. After all, the Wisconsin Idea holds that the university shall spread knowledge — and, when applicable, manure — to every corner of the state.
The event is run by a nonprofit called North American Manure Expo, or NAME. What’s in a NAME? A fertilized field by any other name would smell as ripe. Its board of directors includes a delegate from Ag Annex Publishing Group, which gives the world Manure Manager Magazine. There never has been a more perfect union of reading material and venue than the bathroom and Manure Manager Magazine. Sometimes one finds comfort in a magazine when undergoing manure agitation.
No doubt much will be learned next week, by manure professionals and laymen. Just visiting the event’s website, I learned there are such things as manure brokers. They’re like stock brokers, only less full of crap. My high school guidance counselor let me down by not alerting me to this career path. I ended up spreading dung, anyway, through the weekly collection of puns you’re currently reading.
No doubt the waste wizards who attend the expo get tired of such jokes. Despite all the cracks about turds, they’re undeterred. In their line of work, fecal matter matters. Given an opportunity to learn the latest in manure application strategies, they’re pumped.
As one prospective attendee says in a promotional video, “They’re only here to talk about one thing, and that’s application of manure and more efficient ways to do it, so this show is the Super Bowl, in my opinion, the granddaddy of them all.” Is it too late for NAME to rename this event the Super Bowl of Stool?
I’m happy to have these feces aficionados back in Wisconsin. I think they’ll like it here. After all, we love manure. At UW football games, students invite one another to eat it. In the hinterlands, you can take a Sunday drive and smell it. On the 10 o’clock news, you can listen to our governor dispense it.
Just because we know our feculence doesn’t mean we’ll have nothing to gain from next week’s expo. Even when you’re No. 1, there’s something to be learned about No. 2.