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Student power: Idaho high school athletes double as farm hands for spud harvest

Wake up in time to get to practice at 6:45 a.m., work up to a 15-hour day harvesting potatoes, and then go to sleep to get up and do it again. That’s the life of a high school athlete in Southeast Idaho for weeks during the potato harvesting season known to locals as spud harvest, writes Koster Kennard of the Rexburg Standard Journal in an article published by Farm and Ranch.

He writes that despite the fact that they have to go to practice several times a week, these athletes are some of the local potato farmer’s best employees.

“The kids who play sports are really good workers,” said potato farmer Cade Crapo who owns Crapo Farms in St. Anthony with his family. “They’re willing to go early to practice and they work hard all day. The kids who are playing sports have the work-hard attitude already because they play sports and that kind of goes hand in hand.”

The farmers do have to hire extra workers to make up for the athlete’s time at practice, but Crapo said it’s well worth it.

Cade said high school-aged youth are the perfect employees for spud harvest because they are able to work long hours for the couple weeks while their adult counterparts work full-time jobs.

Source: Farm and Ranch. Read the full story here
Photo: Sugar-Salem’s Aubrey Mace and Kennedy Chambers have worked hard during spud harvest. Courtesy Aubrey Mace

Lukie Pieterse, Editor and Publisher of Potato News Today

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