Having a swine time at the fair – and bunnies, too!


(Posted July 16, 2020)

By Theresa Hennis, Staff Writer/Photographer

At the Madison County Junior Fair on July 14, swine were divine and rabbits held their own, or rather were held and shown as the swine and rabbit showmanship events took place at the EBY Arena and open pavilion area, respectively.

Friday’s fair schedule includes:
9 a.m. – Dog Show

9 a.m. – Equine Show – dressage classes

Saturday’s fair schedule includes:

9 a.m. – Start of online Junior Fair Livestock Sale at www.bwfinaldrive.com

1-5 p.m. – Senior Fair Board election

5 p.m. – KOI drag racing ($10 admission)

Admission to the fair is free through Friday. For more information, visit madisoncountyfairoh.com or www.facebook.com/MadisonCountyFairOh/.

In the rabbit showmanship event, judge Jacinta Taulbee (left), who has raised and shown rabbits for more than 35 years, carefully studied each rabbit and its owner’s handling skills. Here, Kennedy Nickell, 17, a London resident and member of Born in a Barn 4-H Club, proudly shows her New Zealand Black rabbit. “My dad showed rabbits in 4-H,” Nickell said. “I enjoy breeding, raising, and selling rabbits. I like to see the new owners win with my rabbits.” Nickell’s grandmothers, Sandy Wolbert and Nancy Nickell, both of Springfield, have gone to the fair for seven years to watch their granddaughter show rabbits. “She’s grown in her knowledge and presentation and has been showing rabbits since she started 4-H,” they said.
Jacqui Lauer, 18, of London shows her Satin of the Otter variety rabbit named “Vass.” “I love to have competition with other high standard rabbits,” she said. “I like to sell them to others so they can win.”
First place in the age 16 overall senior division of swine showmanship went to Corey Cress of London, a member of Madison Plains FFA. “I didn’t name my pig, but you do get attached because of the work you do together,” he said. “It’s fun. It takes a lot of hard work and dedication. It’s a different kind of community. There’s a good outcome when you put in the work.”
Second place in the age 16 overall senior division of swine showmanship went to Sara Oney of London, a member of the Country Bunch 4-H Club and London FFA. Pretty in pink, both owner and pig were commended by the judge for “their smooth maneuvering of the ring, their consistency and style.” Oney said, “I like doing this for the fun of it, and you learn a lot of life lessons. You learn how to work hard which is important.”
With temperatures in the high 80s, Kiera Kimbler of London, a member of the Green Range 4-H Club, prepares to cool down her pig with a water hose. Kimbler took first place in the age 15 overall senior division of swine showmanship. In last year’s competition, Kimbler won champion showman, third overall intermediate showman, and reserve grand champion breeding guild.


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