County fair underway next week

By Kristen Tribe | Published Saturday, February 23, 2019

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Show Time

SHOW TIME – Kids anxiously await a visit from the judge during a previous Wise County Youth Fair. Next week 4-H and FFA members from across the county will move animals into the barn for the annual livestock show. Other contests include public speaking, ag mechanics, baking, crafts, photography, horticulture and clothing and textiles. Messenger photo by Joe Duty

The fairgrounds will be buzzing with activity next week as local youth and their projects move in for the Wise County Youth Fair Feb. 25-March 2.

The festivities actually kick off today with a parade through downtown Decatur at 10 a.m. Lineup is 9 a.m. on the visitors side of Eagle Stadium, and families are invited to line the streets along the square to celebrate all things agriculture.

Youth Fair Board President Tim Fletcher said he’s excited about the week ahead and hoping for a safe, fun-filled week.

“(The board) has been chipping at it for six months now, going over everything and getting things ready,” he said. “We’re excited to get started Monday night with the queens contest.”

A 4-H, FFA and FCCLA queen will be crowned, and they, along with the runners-up, will hand out ribbons and trophies at the various shows.

Throughout the week, livestock of all shapes and sizes – chickens, rabbits, cattle, sheep, goats and horses – will take center stage in the show arena. Exhibitors and their advisers are reminded to check the event schedule for move-in and show times. (More detailed information can be found on page 8A.) Food and craft entries are due Thursday morning at the Women’s Building, judging will go on throughout the day, and doors will open at 5 p.m. for results.

Fletcher said although exhibitors can always count on parents and grandparents to come out, he hopes the community will visit the fair and support the kids.

“It depends on what they want to see as to which day they should come,” he said. “Thursday is hog and goat day; Friday is beef day. And of course, the Heart of a Champion show [for special needs exhibitors] at 5 that day is always exciting and a good plus for the fair.

“If they want to participate and watch the auction, they can see all the kids Saturday.”

Fletcher also noted several elementary schools are bringing students Thursday and Friday. They’re expecting a total of 440 kids touring the barns.

“We usually have little goodie bags for them and things like that,” he said. “It’s a good time to introduce them to it so they might want to give it a try sometime.”

The fair’s grand finale is the annual auction at 1 p.m. Saturday.

Visitors are welcome all week. There is no cost to attend or park at the venue.

Read Update next week for a daily schedule of events.

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