County fair returns with shows, competitions
Cambry Lynch admits she's been spending a lot of time with her heifer, Whimsey, lately.
It makes sense, considering the Eudora Middle School sixth-grader-to-be is preparing to show the 18-month-old Simmental at the Douglas County Fair.
And she's looking to win.
"I'm pretty excited -- a little bit nervous though," Cambry said.
Cambry will get her chance later in the week as the Douglas County Fair gets into full swing.
The fair gives 4-H'ers the opportunity to show their stuff in a variety of contests ranging from arts and animal husbandry to rocketry. The fair also will include contests, live music and a carnival.
The festivities started earlier in the month when youngsters had the chance the show off their favorite in-door pets. Club members also put on a fashion review last Tuesday in Baldwin.
Although some contests are finished, there's plenty more of the fair to come.
"The county fair is what you look forward to all year long. It's what 4-H is about I guess," said Cambry's mom and former 4-H'er, Sheila Lynch.
This year's fair offers some new events, said Douglas County Fair Board executive secretary Margaret Kalb.
County residents will have the opportunity to try a barrel racing competition Friday.
"It should be a fun night," Kalb said.
The next day, the 4-H'ers will show off their own horses at the 4-H Club horse show at 11 a.m. Saturday.
There also will be an open horse show on Sunday, Kalb said.
"You don't have to be pre-entered for that and you can enter all the classes you want," she said. "Just show up with your horse."
The fair continues Monday, as judges will evaluate foods, crafts and visual art.
"Things really get under way Monday," Kalb said.
Starting Tuesday, residents can enter fruit and nut pies in the president's pie baking contest at the fair board office. Fair officials will accept pies until Aug. 4.
Also starting Tuesday night, Moore's Greater Shows Carnival opens. The carnival will be open from 6 to 11 p.m. Tuesday through Thursday, from 6 p.m. to midnight Friday and from 5 to 11 p.m. Saturday. Thursday will be a family night.
Livestock will take center stage Wednesday, as beef, sheep and swine will be weighed-in. There also will be goat and poultry shows during the day.
Wednesday night also marks the first musical performance of the fair. Listeners will have the opportunity to hear music by the Konza Swamp Band.
"I think it's a bluesy, folksy kind of music," Kalb said.
The animal shows continue Aug. 2 as 4-H'ers will showcase flowers, rabbits, sheep, bucket calves and dairy animals. In the evening, people can watch an antique tractor pull at 6 p.m. or see square dancers from the Happy Times Squares spin at 7:30 p.m.
"There's always a big crowd for that, lots of antique tractors," Kalb said.
Musical guest Chuck Mead, lead singer of BR59, will play at 7: 30 p.m.
On Aug. 3, judges will begin judging cattle including both 4-H and Future Farmers of America entries.
The day also will mark the return of the popular, hay bale-throwing contest, Kalb said.
"We get some Kansas University football players out there," Kalb said.
The annual demolition derby also will take place at 7:30 p.m. Friday. Tickets for the derby are $10.
Friday's musical act, Within, will play from 7 to 10 p.m.
The last full day of the fair, Aug. 4, will be filled with zany contests. At 9 a.m. youngsters will have the opportunity to race turtles. At 4 p.m. judges will evaluate the county's best llamas.
At 2 p.m., 4-H parents will be able to have some fun. At that point, parents will compete to see who could come up with best costume for their children's animals as part of the creative fitting contest.
"It always a lot of fun," Kalb said.
Saturday's entertainment will be from the old-time country band, Twang Daddies, playing from 7 to 10 p.m. The Missouri State Tractor Puller's Association Hot Rod and Tractor pull will begin at 7 p.m.
Tickets for the tractor pull are $10 for adults and $5 for children 12 yearsold and younger.
The exhibits come down the following day, Aug. 5, followed by an awards ceremony for the 4-H'ers. It all will end with a livestock auction at 4:30 p.m. in the community building.
With all the activities, Cambry's brother Colton also is preparing to do the best he can. His projects include a horticulture presentation and he's raising a different Simmental heifer.
"You always get nervous but you know it's just for fun," Colton said. "You've got to have fun doing it and enjoy having fun with the cattle."