After experiencing a year filled with challenges, we are excited to share with you the 2020 Fairfield County Junior Fair Livestock Sale is STILL ON as scheduled. We know our youth are putting the finishing touches on their livestock projects and now we know they will have the opportunity to market their projects in the Show Arena on the fairgrounds during the annual Junior Fair Sales, October 15 and 16, 2020.
As you might imagine, due to concerns for the health and safety of our youth, their families, and our buyers, this year’s sale will be different than sales in the past. While everyone will continue to receive additional updates from now until Fair, this is meant to highlight changes regarding the sale of Jr Fair livestock that we know at this point.
After careful consideration of a number of factors including current livestock market conditions, and suggestions and/or requirements offered by the Governor and the Department of Health, we will proceed with the Jr. Fair livestock sales on October 15 and 16 as follows:
- This year’s sale will be a ‘partial terminal’ sale. In this case, that means only the Champion and Reserve Champion market beef, market swine, market lamb and market goat will be required to stay at the Fair and be harvested at the conclusion of the Fair.
- Aside from the 8 champions mentioned above, all youth will be given the opportunity to take their market animals home. For those not choosing to take their animals home, packer bids will be secured same as in the recent past. Learn more on that in this recent blog post: Market animals may go home this year . . . carefully consider that option!
- No youth will bring their animals into the ring during the sale.
- With exception of the beef, swine, sheep and goat champions, all animals will have left the grounds prior to the sales.
- Only the Champion and Reserve Champion beef, swine, sheep and goats will be available to be ‘keeps’ from the sale for freezer meat. No other animal projects in the sale will be available for buyer ‘keeps.’
- In order to maintain proper social distances throughout the sales, only buyers will be invited into the Arena for the sales. The youth will be in the sale ring as their turn arrives in the sale order, and their immediate family is invited to watch them each sell.
- With respect for the concerns for everyone’s health, buyers will be given multiple ways they may participate, including options that allow them to be involved without attending the sale.
- There will be no refreshment tent at this year’s sale, however cold, bottled water will be offered.
- Youth will be asked not to thank or give tokens of appreciation to their buyers during the sales.
- Plans for how and when show photos will be taken and made available are still being developed.
As families consider the opportunity to accept a packer bid, or take their market project home, keep in mind that due to issues resulting from the pandemic, packer capacity that allows custom harvest of animals for the freezer is severely limited at this time. Most Midwest custom harvest packers tell us they are booked out until after the first of the year. We’ll offer more on that, and in particular the impact the pandemic has had on market hog prices later.
As the time approaches, more details regarding the Fair schedule and unique changes for this year will be shared. In the meantime, if you have questions about the Sales, please visit our Jr. Fair Livestock Sale website at https://u.osu.edu/livestocksale/, or contact one of the Sale committee members listed there.