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4-H’ers ready to show off chickens, pigs at fair

The Cattle Barn at the Pike County Fairgrounds will be will be teeming with farm animals for viewing and some for showing at the Pike County Fair this week.

The county fair opens at 6 p.m. tonight and continues through Saturday.

Pike County 4-H’ers will provide fair goers with something to cackle about tonight at the Cattle Barn and somebody and something to root for on Thursday night.

The Pike County 4-H’er Cackle Club members will compete tonight at 6:30 for prize money and ribbons at “the barn” when nine “trainers” and their chickens take center stage.

Emily Rolling, Pike County 4-H Regional Extension agent, said Pike County Cackle Club members and Cackle Club members from Crenshaw and Bullock counties were invited to participate in the county fair competition.

“The 4-H-ers got their biddies in the spring and have done a great job raising them,” Rolling said. “They are anxious to show their chickens, especially in the showmanship category.”

The chickens will first be judged in their cages, and then the 4-H’ers will remove the chickens from their cages and demonstrate their ability to handle their birds.

“The judges will ask the 4-H’ers questions about their chickens – what they eat, where they were caged, all kinds of questions,” Rolling said. “At the same time, they will be observing how the chickens are reacting to being handled.”

When the county competition is over, Rolling said the Cackle Club members will have the option of keeping their chickens, selling them or eating them.

However, very few Cackle Club chickens make it to the Sunday dinner table, she said.
“Most of the club members choose to keep their chickens for fresh eggs for family and friends or to sell. Some bring a rooster into the hen house so they will have baby chicks.”

Participants in the 4-H Pig Pen project will compete at 6:30 p.m. Thursday at the Cattle Barn.

“The Pig Pen competition is actually like showing calves,” Rolling said. “The 4-H’ers will walk around the ring with a stick or whip and demonstrate how they can handle their pigs. The difference between showing a calf and a pig is that the pig does not have a halter. The 4-H’ers must handle their pig with only a stick.”

The competition will be in ring outside the barn.

The Cackle Club and Pig Pen competitions are included with admission to the fair. Everyone is invited to enjoy these unique competitions and support the local 4-H programs.