Saturday, August 2, 2008

Fair - A Week in Review

First, I uploaded tons of pictures (fair and otherwise) onto the dropshots can check them out at

Sunday, Austin took his Blue Building projects. He took in two pictures and one consumer savvy project. His consumer savvy project was my favorite. We go through a TON of bananas in our house, so he compared bananas bought from KwikStar and bananas bought from our local grocer. The immediate cost difference was 30 cents. However, we wanted to see what the actual cost was once you peeled the bananas. We thought the difference would shrink, because you would lose more actual product with the KS bananas. How wrong we were! You actually end up losing MORE buying them at the grocery store. The true difference was 54 cents! Needless to say, as much as possible, Steve will be picking up our bananas for sure on his way home from work every night. He was considered for state for this project and ended up with honorable mention. For this project area, only one went to state and only one received honorable mention, so that was awesome!

He took two pictures from his birthday party last year that he took with his new digital camera. Both of those were also considered for state. One received a blue and one received an honorable mention. Another great job!!

Finally, he showed his rabbits yesterday. This was our first year using our own stock, so we were curious to see how they would do. They were bred from the excellent breeder stock we use, so we were hopeful until last week. Then they all of the sudden started molting all over the place. Our fair is so last in the year that it is blazing hot by the time it gets here and they were a mess! Still, we tried to pick the best ones available (he only took three).

The senior buck, Bucky, received a blue. His ears were a little long and he was molting, but he met breed standards, so he received blue. One senior doe, Pip, received a red because she was too fat and over breed standards for weight. Steve doesn't agree...he thinks she was right on the line, but there was no scale and she was a hair chunky. She was also molting and pitting from how much hair she was losing. The other senior doe, Dino, we had showed last year and she did really well. She received a blue this year again, but was a little long in body to beat out some of the smaller ones. Again, still within breed standards, though. All in all, they did better than we thought they would and Austin was pleased with how they did. It was a HUGE class this year....larger than last year (13, with two being disqualified right off), so that made competition a little harder also.

Austin didn't want to do showmanship this year, but we made him. It's the one area he can show what he knows about his rabbits and how he handles them. In other words, it's more about him than his rabbits. It's important for him and he learns a lot through that process so we make him. He does consistently well in this area, also, so I don't know why he didn't want to do it. He did do it and ended up receiving Reserve Grand Champion! I knew almost immediately that he wasn't going to get GC this year...there was a new girl there and she expertly flipped her rabbit. Austin didn't support his rabbits butt when he flipped his and that counted against him. But he impressed the judge with how he answered his questions and how he handled the rabbit. He said he knew which kids worked with their rabbits and which ones just showed up at fair without spending time with them and if you work with them, you will be rewarded for that. He was an excellent judge and really did a lot more teaching than I have seen in previous years and also at other fairs.

All in all, Austin had a great experience and did really well all week! And I'm thrilled that we go pick up projects today and it is over again for this year. We all look forward to it, but we are all happy when it's over, also!


Anonymous said...

Way to go Austin we are very proud of you. Thank you for coming and spending time with us we had a very nice time. Love ya Grandma & Grandpa Willey

Ash said...

I am glad to hear that you guys make him participate in Showmanship. My mom always made up participate in judging and showmanship with our dairy cattle and I think we learned a lot more about our projects than we would have otherwise. Great Job Austin!