Trevor Johnson has been a member of the Purple Heart in Andover for eight years and he’s been to the Butler County 4-H every year.
At the fair, which wraps up this week in El Dorado, Johnson, like a lot of other 4-Hers, spends a lot of his time grooming and cleaning his animals. This year he is tending to sheep and pigs, but there also are cows, goats and other livestock around the fairgrounds.
Treating animals, of course, is a crucial aspect to not only the various contests, but just herding in general. For Johnson, he washes and shears lambs to prepare them for the show, and he keeps a wet towel on them to keep them cool on those scorching hot days, though the weather has been mostly kind this year. For the pigs, he just needs to wash them, and maybe run a small mister to keep them cool.
During the show, Johnson knows all the little tricks, like stretching the animals and bracing their backs so judges get a better feel of the animal.
More than the contest, though, Johnson has enjoyed the experience of coming to the fair.
“I like the people I show with,” Johnson said. “I just like the Butler County Fair. It’s fun to have friends come out and show together.”
While the 4H club and fairs have taught him and many others how to have respect for animals, they also learn to grow a respect for one another and other people, too.
Other 4-H groups in attendance included the Rose Hill Rustlers, the Towanda Rustlers and groups from Flinthills and Benton, among others.
Look for more coverage on the 4-H fair in coming Times-Gazette issues, including Wednesday night’s award winners.