What an eventful Tioga County Fair!
Monday started the Dairy Goat Show. In the Nubian show we won Grand Champion Sr. Doe, 4-H Reserve Grand Champion Sr. Doe and Grand Champion Jr. Doe! We also won Get of Sire (Clover, Shamrock, and Mistaken Rose), and Dam & Daughter (Mistaken Rose and Gelway Rose). In the Saanen show we won Reserve Grand Champion Jr. Doe (Lillian), 4H Grand Champion Sr. Doe (Maude) and 4H Reserve Grand Champion Sr. Doe (Wisteria). We also won the 4H Dam & Daughter (Millie and Lillie) and 4H Get of Sire (Lillie, Holly, and Petunia).
We also won Best 3 Females with Mistaken Rose, Clover, and Shamrock. Then won Best Get of Sire of Show with the same 3 as well. Mikey and Katie each won their Dairy Goat Showmanship classes. Then Mikey won Reserve Master Showman!
On Tuesday was the Meat Goat Show. Mikey placed 2nd in his class but best of all…won his showmanship class. Not bad for his 1st time ever showing boer goats. He beat several others who have been showing boers since a very young age.
Wednesday we took a break from showing. We came home and cleaned out the barn, mowed the grass, did some laundry, and cleaned up the house. We headed back to the fair to groom our Market Hogs and wash the Market Lambs in preparation for the next two shows to come.
Thursday was the sheep show. Mike and Katie headed out for showmanship class. I leaned over to a friend and said “Boy those are some ugly looking lambs that Mike and Katie have!” Mikey surprised us all and won his sheep showmanship class! He was so excited to have won all 3 showmanship classes he had entered thus far at the fair.
Mike and Katie each had lambs in the Medium Weight class. Katie placed 1st and Mikey placed 2nd. We were shocked. Then Katie placed 2nd in her heavy weight class. When 1st and 2nd were brought back in for Grand and Reserve…Katie’s Medium Weight lamb took Reserve Grand Champion (this was the same lamb that I thought was “so ugly”)!!! Katie then won Grand Champion Pair of Market Lambs. What made the wins even more special…the lambs were born and raised on our farm and will be the last ones ever. We sold the sheep herd in the spring after deciding to concentrate on the goat milk soap business and breeding dairy goats only. Katie who is normally soft spoken and shy came out of her shell a little more after each win. At the beginning of the sheep show she barely cracked a smile or said a word. By the time she won Grand Champion Market Pairs, she was laughing and talking with the judge. Vince and I got the biggest kick out it. What a way to end our sheep breeding “career” and go out with a bang!
The next day was Friday and the Swine show. Both Mikey and Katie had a market hog entered. They fell into the medium weight group and took 2nd and 3rd. The each won 2nd and 3rd in showmanship as well. We were proud of them as this was an improvement in both classes from last year’s fair and it was only the 2nd time they had ever show swine.
Saturday brought the Jr. Livestock Sale which is a happy and sad day for me. Happy for all the kids who finally get to reap the benefits of all their hard work by auctioning off their 4H animals and making some money to put into their college funds, etc. Sad because I know that it is the end of the road for these animals. Every year I do my best to not get attached but every year I seem to.
We would like to thank our children’s buyers…Ward Manufacturing (Katie’s Reserve Grand Champion Market Lamb), Bryan’s Meat Cutting (Mikey’s Market Hog), 1st Citizens National Bank (Katie’s Market Hog), Cornell Brothers Inc. (Katie’s market Lamb and Mikey’s Market Goat), and Weis Markets (Mikey’s Market Lamb.
After the Jr. Livestock Sale the truck pulls up and loads the animals. You will find me taking a long walk when this happens. I usually find a remote place and have a good cry. I know that it is part of farming but it is the part that I can’t seem to get used to.
So all in all, the Tioga County Fair was a successful event. We aren’t complaining and no one would care if we did anyway 🙂 We are already making plans for next year…trying to figure out what we can do to make it better. What’s in the works? Breeding plans for our Saanens and Nubians, purchasing a few Nubian does from Tecoa Seibert of Cream of Kansas’. I am also taking an Artificial Insemination class and Vince just purchased a AI tank for me. Hey…shouldn’t that make some interesting blogs in the future!
Right now though, our focus has turned to Linear Appraisal with ADGA on September 4th and preparing for the Pa State Farm Show in January. And well, what seems like a 100 craft fairs in between. So I am back to making soap like a mad person while day dreaming of perfect little doelings to come from my perfect breeding plans this fall.
By the way…the boys are in full rut and Holy Crap! do they SMELL!…get ready for “LOVE IS IN THE AIR AND IT STINKS”…round 2!