Monday, April 29, 2013

Pima County Fair and 4H

This past week has been hectic for us. The Pima County Fair was on and two of the kids were showing their bantam chickens. Much preparation at their 4H leader's house went into this big moment for the boys. We had never been to the barn section of the fair before, so it was a new and exciting as well as educational experience.

The 4H and FFA children were showing poultry (chickens, pigeons, ducks, peacocks, turkeys), beef steers, dairy cattle, goats, sheep, and hogs. Each group puts up a display poster about their project which is informative. Many of those that we enjoyed reading were the diseases pigs can carry and transmit to humans (ew!), the cost of raising a hog, the cuts of meat on a chicken and facts about steers.

Beef Steers kept cool with a fan
The children have barn duty, which means they hang out in the barn near their project and are available to answer general questions. These kids did a great job and it was obvious they'd studied up. The barn and animals are maintained by the children and everything was tidy.

Poultry Showmanship
Our boys only did the showmanship show as we are so new to all of this and it's overwhelming at first. Other parents recommended that we take the kids out of school the whole week of fair. Some even bring campers and rent a site on the fairgrounds. Now we understand why!

Goat Showmanship
If our kids were taking part in more than one show or project we would have needed to be out there much more. As it was, we were there each day to feed and water their chickens and help out with our group's birds.

Outside one of the rides
Next year we will know what to expect and be better prepared. The boys both earned blue ribbons for showmanship. They have plans for the next time around and seem to be enjoying 4H more than ever now.

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