County fair a hit in the heat
The livestock are gone, the 4-H projects have been taken home, the commercial exhibitors packed up and left and the crowds have dispersed.
After a week of judging, events and activities, the 2001 Douglas County Free Fair ended last Saturday with the livestock auction.
"I'd say the fair was very successful this year, in spite of the heat," Trudy Rice, county extension director, said.
Even though the heat didn't cause any problems for the 4-H'ers and their exhibits, Rice said it did affect the general public.
"The heat was a major factor," she said. "There was definitely a fewer amount of people attending the fair this year.
"A lot of people said this was the hottest fair they could remember."
Several Baldwin-area youth from the Vinland Valley, Palmyra, Worden Workers and Pioneer 4-H Clubs braved the heat and exhibited in this year's fair.
Some 4-H'ers found success with their entries.
Palmyra 4-H Club member Emily Krysztof, 13, along with her younger sister, Brianna, 11, won champion and reserve champion, respectively, in the cross breed heifer class.
"I was really surprised because I'd never won champion before," Emily Krysztof said.
"It was weird to have two sisters win the top two spots," she said. "It was really rewarding to us because we work them together every day and help each other out."
Brianna Krysztof said her favorite part of the fair was finding out how she did on her projects.
"I just like seeing how the things I entered in the fair do because of all the time I spent on them," she said.
But she said the fair wasn't just about winning.
"I like to see how others do and what projects they have," she said. "I like to look around and get new ideas."
Wesley Callahan, 12, said he thought the fair had been fun, but the heat had an effect on livestock, as well as people.
"The calves just didn't want to eat," the Palmyra Club 4-H'er said. "That does not help if you're trying to show them."
He said he tried to keep his cattle cool by keeping fans on them and misting them with water.
But more than just exhibiting went on at the fair this year.
Pioneer 4-H Club member Tom Wilson said he was having a busier fair this year because he was a 4-H Ambassador for the first time.
As part of being an ambassador, Wilson's job includes talking to people about 4-H and sharing information about the organization. He said he had to work that time around his exhibits.
"I had to do radio interviews and work the booth," Wilson, 17, said. "It did take some extra time this year."
Rice said the opportunity to participate in the fair was a good experience for the 4-H'ers.
"The fair's just a very successful positive self concept," she said.