Iowa Farm Bureau and University of Iowa Athletics team up for the 12th annual America Needs Farmers (ANF) game and tailgate at Kinnick Stadium
Former Hawkeye standout and NFL Super Bowl champion Bryan Bulaga to meet fans in ANF Legends Tent
Iowa Farm Bureau and the University of Iowa Athletic Department will celebrate America’s farmers at the 12th annual America Needs Farmers (ANF) Game Day, Saturday, Oct. 21 at Kinnick Stadium. The highly anticipated annual rivalry game against the University of Minnesota kicks off at 2:30 p.m. and features two historic Big Ten programs. The nationally televised matchup will showcase why the ANF program is as important today as ever before.
As part of the annual celebration recognizing the significance of Iowa agriculture, fans will have the opportunity to interact with farmers at the ANF Legends Tent in Krause Family Plaza and play tailgate games from 10:30 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. for a chance to win exclusive ANF/Hawkeye prizes, such as clear ANF sunglasses, bags, koozies, wrist lanyards, bandanas, light-up necklaces and more, while learning how Iowa agriculture plays a major role in our daily lives. Fans will also have the opportunity to get autographs from the newest ANF Wall of Honoree and Super Bowl champion, Bryan Bulaga, along with Hawkeye fan favorites, Gary Dolphin and Ed Podolak.
“The annual ANF game and tailgate activities provide a great opportunity for fans to interact with Iowa farmers and learn about the diversity and innovation of agriculture today, while celebrating the importance of agriculture to our state and nation,” said Iowa Farm Bureau President Brent Johnson. “Iowa farmers recognize the importance of this special event, and many are stepping out of their combines and away from harvest on their farms to interact with fans and answer their questions about agriculture and food production today.”
Like most Iowans, Bulaga didn’t grow up on the farm, but farming is still a part of his family’s legacy, and the values and virtues that define ANF play a huge role in his life. Bulaga has spent most of his life in the Midwest, surrounded by agriculture, and has a strong affinity for the work ethic and dedication of farmers today. The ANF character is something that not only defines him but is also something Bulaga and his wife instill in their children.
“As a father, I want to pass down that ANF mentality to my kids,” Bulaga said. “Toughness, determination and the ability to face adversity and push through are things my wife and I try to pass down to our kids.”
The hard work and tenacity that embodies the Iowa farmer was evident during Bulaga’s playing days, where he persevered through a variety of injuries during his career. Despite hardships and obstacles both during his collegiate and professional career, Bulaga’s playing career was a tremendous success highlighted by an Orange Bowl win with his fellow Hawkeyes and winning Super Bowl XLV with the Green Bay Packers.
Bulaga is the 11th recipient of the America Needs Farmers (ANF) Wall of Honor, which salutes former University of Iowa football players who exemplify the tenacity, work ethic and character of the Iowa farmer. Previous ANF Wall of Honor recipients include Casey Wiegman (2012), Jared DeVries (2013), Bruce Nelson (2014), Robert Gallery (2015), Dallas Clark (2016), Chad Greenway (2017), Aaron Kampman (2018), Matt Kroul (2019), Marshal Yanda (2021) and Tony Moeaki (2022).
A gold ANF decal was placed on players’ helmets during the Hawkeyes’ 1985 Rose Bowl season by head coach Hayden Fry to show support for farmers during the 1980’s Farm Crisis. The Hawkeye helmets still have the special decal on them today. ANF serves as a longstanding tribute to America’s farmers, andIFBF and University of Iowa are excited to help connect Iowa’s farm families to consumers to learn more about the production of food, fuel and fiber and the farm families raising it.
Fans can show their ANF and Hawkeye pride by purchasing ANF merchandise during game day in shops around the stadium with a portion of the proceeds benefitting the Iowa Food Bank Association. Since the ANF partnership began, more than $180,000 has been raised to feed hungry Iowans.
For more information about ANF and Game Day activities, visit www.americaneedsfarmers.org.
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