4-H participants enjoy showing off their animals at Montgomery County Fair

When the pandemic forced the cancellation of the Montgomery County Fair in 2020, the most disappointed were the children in 4-H who didn’t get to show the animals they raised for the year.

On Tuesday, you could see a full-year of determination as 4-Hers showed off their horses, pigs, poultry and goats on a cloudy and often rainy day.

Three local children got to experience their hard work pay off when they claimed victory in their show classes during the Junior Swine Showmanship.

Allie Brunk, 11, was awarded first place in her show class as well as Reserve Overall Junior Showman. Brunk competed alongside her friend and fellow 4-H member, Lucy Shell, 12, who was also awarded first place in her class, as well as honored as a Reserve Overall against the winners of the Junior, Intermediate, and Senior showman classes.

“It takes a lot of work to get ready for showing pigs,” Brunk said. “I raised and trained my pigs for months before showing them today.”

Allie isn’t the only one in her family who is involved in 4-H. Her younger brothers Connor, 9, and Caleb, 5, also are showing animals at this year’s fair.

Allie’s parents, Natalie and Ryan Brunk, value the skills their kids have learned by participating in the 4-H program year after year, since they too showed animals with 4-H growing up.

“It is a family affair, so if one of them wins in the ring, they both win,” Natalie Brunk said. “They are always super happy for each other.”

Kace Kozaree, 14, on Tuesday was awarded the biggest award of the pig show, Swine Showman of Showmen. Kozaree said it was his first year being able to show his pigs, and he was excited to finally have all of his hard work pay off.

“It is all about the work you put in behind the scenes,” Kozaree said. “There’s no natural talent involved like in sports. It really is all about how much time and hard work you put into it.”

Mark Jimison, board president of the Montgomery County Agricultural Society, said that along with welcoming residents back to the fair this year, the board is happy to give the children the opportunity to show animals once again.

“It means a lot to the kids that we could put on the fair this year,” Jimison said. “We are excited to let them show off what they have done, and get back to the normal fair experience. I know they are all excited to be here.”

The Montgomery County Fair continues through Sunday.



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