Judges pick finest swine
RIFLE – A pat on the back meant much more than a job well done Tuesday at the Garfield County Fair 4-H swine show.Nichelle Jaeger, 14, of Silt knew she had won the swine crossbred division when a straight-faced judge picked her pig out of a crowd of finalists and slapped it on the back. “I was real skeptical coming here,” she said after putting away her trophy, between cell phone calls. “So many people are doing swine projects that there are some really good pigs. You get beat a lot.” Jaeger said she had shown her pig about five times up and down the Western Slope, but Tuesday was the first time she’d won.The competition was good and had many entries, said spectator Sandra Allmon, of Rifle.”It’s 20 after 2 and they’re still not done,” Allmon said near the end of the show, which started at 7:30 a.m.She sat in the bleachers near the show ring and carefully recorded the results of each division after her two grandchildren, Zach and Amy, had shown their pigs.Allmon said judges “want them kind of long and they want a good ham on them, good loin,” she said. Though the animal shows were the main attraction of the fair on Wednesday, many vendors had already set up shop, and carnival operators were putting the finishing touches on their attractions – spinning the first sticks of cotton candy and hanging stuffed-animal prizes.Vicki Ruechel, a maintenance worker at the fairgrounds, was helping vendors settle in. The fair will have about 31 vendors by today, she said, more than the fair has ever had.”We have horse tack, a guy selling blankets, ATVs, info booths .” said Ruechel. One booth even lures fairgoers to rest their bodies with a massage chair and table set up beneath the shade of a tent.Area 4-H’ers also took part in the goat show yesterday afternoon.Michael Runia, 12, of Rifle was showing three of his goats yesterday. Michael said he has been showing goats for three years, and just enjoys showing. The biggest of his goats, Big Red, weighs more than he does and is almost as tall, he said.During the first round, 4-H’ers knelt behind their goats as the judge called individual contestants forward for a closer look.Then the judge walked to the opposite side of the goat line, sending kids scurrying to opposite side of their animals and offering the judge a clear view of their animals.No goat show results were available at press time. The FFA and 4-H animal showing will continue throughout the week. Contact Ryan Graff: 945-8515, ext. firstname.lastname@example.org
Today at the Fair:-The Garfield County Junior Rodeo, 6:30 p.m.-Rabbit show at 8 a.m. and sheep show at 2 p.m.
This weekend at the fair:-Bareback bronc riding, barrel racing, bull riding and other rodeo events, 8 p.m. Friday.-Junior livestock sale, 2 p.m. Saturday.-Freestyle motocross, 7 p.m. Saturday.For a complete schedule of weekend events at the fair, see Friday’s Post Independent.
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