Participants’ hard work to be showcased
By Colin Anderson
Photo Courtesy of Kootenai: Shoshone 4-H
Despite the cancellation of the North Idaho State Fair, there will still be some activity within the fairgrounds’ many buildings. The Fair Board, alongside the Kootenai/Shoshone 4-H program, Panhandle Health and others, found a format in which the annual 4-H competition can still be held.
“The most traditional piece of almost any fair is the 4-H,” said Kootenai County Fairgrounds General Manager Alexcia Jordan. “It will be different this year, but I think the kids will really enjoy it.”
By not having the throngs of visitors, vendors and workers, there will be a lot more real estate available to 4-H. Different judging areas will be spread out throughout the many fair buildings in order to keep groups small. While the livestock auction portion is undoubtedly the most well-known, what is often overlooked is the scope and wide range of projects kids participate in under 4-H. “4-H is a youth development program that gives kids life skills, and we are so much more than cows and cookies. We have projects in leadership, citizenship, robotics, gardening, art and just about any topic you can imagine,” said Program Coordinator Teresa Balderrama.
Whatever the project might be, participants put in hours upon hours of work leading up to the fair. Many began their project or raising their animal last fall. “They record expenses, income, activities, and even write an essay about the project experience. The 4-H kids also are required to give a demonstration to their peers about something that relates to the project,” said Teresa.
For the first time, the popular livestock auction will be held online at LiveAuctions.tv. You can also contact Alexcia at the fairgrounds to register as a livestock buyer. In previous years, fair daily admissions covered the bulk of the costs of putting on the show. With no ticket sale revenue this year, the fairgrounds is looking for additional sponsors for this year’s 4-H program.
The show runs August 25 through August 29. A schedule of events is up at NISFair.fun. If health conditions and regulations improve, there is a chance for some in-person attendance at the event. Visit the fair website or social media channels for the latest information.