Jones Column: Fair fun on the breeze
I can smell it already. It’s the place where the sugar in the cotton candy meets the grease on the fresh fries. It’s where the snow cones taste 10 times better and the corn dogs are always cooked just right.
It’s the place where you learn if the project you took on for the past year was given enough time and energy or if there’s room for improvement. It’s where you can hear the livestock fans running all day and the announcer making calls late into the night.
It is… County Fair. I love a good ol’ county fair. I love the beaming faces of the kids showing their animals. I love the intense stares they’re getting from their parents on the sidelines. I love seeing the hands on artsy talent. I love the group effort that exists in spite of everyone being in competition.
I didn’t grow up participating in a 4H program and I was always a bit envious of the camaraderie that was present among those who did. I have, however, helped host a number of events in my adult life where I asked the 4H kids to come help as part of their community service and every time I am amazed with these kids.
From their ability to hold a conversation with an adult stranger, or be put on the spot in a crowd, to their ability to see a task through to the end and the work ethic as a whole is impressive. I’ve never had to worry about them dropping the ball on anything because they show up taking whatever job I throw at them seriously and with a sense of responsibility.
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In speaking with friends of mine that grew up involved in 4H the consensus was the same; they’d encourage anyone’s kids to become involved in 4H. Aside from what I can note, one touched on having learned how to be a winner and how to be a loser while in 4H… and I’d agree that our world could use a bit more of that right now. 4H also teaches business skills such as financial responsibility and marketing as well how to be a good leader.
These 4H kids need our support more than ever, and we need more kids in 4H. They show up “ready to serve” when they’re asked … and I think that is the core of a solid community’s future. So let’s, as a community, show up for these kids even bigger this year at the Moffat County Fair.
Loy Aisling Jones is a columnist for the Craig Press. Her column will appear on the last Friday of each month.
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