The 2020 Del Norte County Fair may have been canceled due to the COVID-19 pandemic. But organizers have found a way to continue the 2020 Junior Livestock Sale.
Fair manager Kim Floyd said the traditional auction of livestock raised by area youth has been transformed into a sale.
“It’s way different than we’ve ever done it before. The situation is completely different,” Floyd said. “It’s worked out very well so far.”
The fair’s website features a photo and biography of each youth exhibitor and the animal they’ve raised. Floyd explained that because this is now a sale — instead of an auction — they have set minimum prices for each species.
“Please know that these are minimum prices. We understand these are lower than averages of previous years, so don’t feel limited by these prices,” she said.
As long as the minimum price is met, buyers can choose to pay more as an added benefit to the exhibitor and an additional tax deduction, Floyd added.
“We’re finding a lot of new people who have never purchased livestock before are coming out to support the kids,” Floyd said. “They’ve worked so hard. There’s a lot of money wrapped in their projects to raise the animal. Plus, it builds self-confidence and looks good on scholarships and competitions.”
For example, Rylee DuBois, a Crescent Elk Middle School seventh grader and member of the Lake Earl Grange, wrote on her exhibitor bio about purchasing and raising her lamb, Lamborghini.
“For the last several months, I have been responsible for feeding, watering, grooming and walking my lamb. I have spent a lot of time and hard work taking care of my lamb, but it has also been very rewarding,” DuBois wrote. “My favorite thing to do with her is to walk her around my family’s little farm and introduce her to the other animals. So far, she has made friends with the dog, my horse, and the goats.”
Potential buyers chose their livestock in the online catalog, then contact the fair office to obtain a buyer proxy form.
“They fill out the proxy letter, mail or bring it in to us and we let the child know who purchased animal,” Floyd said. “Between now and Aug. 8 it’s up to the child to update the buyer on the progress of the animal.”
The exhibitors will bring their animals to the fairgrounds in Crescent City on Aug. 8. A veterinarian will inspect and weigh the animal then determine it to be market ready. The livestock will then be transferred to the harvester’s trailer.
Floyd said there are about 86 animals in total to be sold, including beef, hogs, lambs, goats, laying hens, turkeys and rabbits. She added the sale is first-come, first-serve, and several youngsters already have sales pending.
Floyd wanted to be sure potential buyers understand what they’re purchasing — livestock for harvesting food, not pets.
“This is for people looking to fill their freezer with organic meat,” Floyd said. “This is a great way to get good quality meat for your freezer and support local youth.”