4-H at the Franklin County Fair

(Provided photo)

The 172nd annual Franklin County Fair kicked off on Sunday, Aug. 7, with poultry judging, horses in place, Holstein and red and white cattle in place, and a demolition derby. It will conclude on Sunday, Aug. 14, with an open beef show and tractor pulls.

You can still take a spin on the tilt-a-whirl or a ride on the ferris wheel, enjoy fried dough and take in a monster truck show (Aug. 10), a demolition derby (Aug. 11), or a concert by Rodney Atkins and Tracy Byrd (Aug. 12) or Walker Hayes and Tigirlily (Aug. 13).

It’s also an opportunity to learn about or show your support for 4-H, America’s largest youth development organization.

4-H is almost certainly the most highly recognized of all Cooperative Extension programs. And the Franklin County Fair has a long and rich tradition of supporting 4-H programs and 4-H youth. For more than a century, the Fair has been a place for 4-H members to come together to showcase their skills, craftsmanship, showmanship, and their animals. The fair isn’t actually a part of the 4-H program and Cornell Cooperative Extension and the fair board are not directly related. But both organizations have been cooperating for generations to assure continued success.

Franklin County 4-H club members will be exhibiting their projects in the 4-H Youth Building (located behind the commercial exhibits building). The 4-H Fair theme for 2022 is “4-H Together Wherever.”

Parents are invited to take a relaxing break from the midway while children of all ages enjoy live, interactive activities (e.g. butter making) on the 4-H Stage daily from 1-3 p.m., or visit the small animal petting zoo, the Build a Tower Pit, and the kinetic sand and lego tables. It’s all free!

While you’re there, stop by the Clover Corner Eats concession stand, where you can try a walking taco made with locally-sourced beef, cheese and sour cream, or a Stewart’s milkshake, fresh popcorn, cotton candy and much more. Clover Corner Eats is open daily from noon to 6 p.m.

The effort, creativity and teamwork put forth by 4-H leaders and volunteers, and the hard work of our 4-H club members as they ready their displays with the posters, crafts, woodworking, sewing and gardening projects that they’ve submitted for judging, is often inspirational. And words cannot describe the love, pride and individual care given by these remarkably enthusiastic boys and girls to their exceptionally-well-cared-for animals. They won’t all go home with blue ribbons but, as far as I’m concerned, they’re all winners.

Visitors are encouraged to view these much-loved animals in their pens and stalls and to enjoy the many equestrian and livestock exhibits, demonstrations, shows, and competitions taking place during the week.

4H events include:

Wednesday, Aug. 10

8 a.m. — Combined Open and 4-H Youth Goat Shows (Inside Arena), English Horse Show (Riding Arena).

Thursday, Aug. 11

(Children’s Day; Senior Citizen’s Day; Sensory Perception Day)

10 a.m. — 4-H Youth Goat Showmanship, pack and costume (Inside Arena).

Friday, Aug. 12

8 a.m. — All day Pony and Horse Show (New Riding Arena)

2 p.m. — 4-H Youth Colored Breeds Show (Inside Arena)

6 p.m. ­­­­– 4-H Youth Beef Show (Inside Arena)

Saturday, Aug. 13

9 a.m. — Cattle Judging, Colored Breeds; Open Sheep Show (Sheep Barn).

Sunday, Aug. 14

(Agricultural Day)

1 p.m. — 4-H Wearable Creations Fashion Show (4-H Building). Young designers walk the catwalk dressed in clothing they created (e.g. hats, mittens, felt purses, t-shirt dresses).


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