Grimes County Fair Results
We survived the week-long events at the Grimes County Fair. From performing a routine on horseback before the rodeo twice to the Premium Sale on Thursday night, my children, Jake and Kyla DeHaven, were working hard and having fun. In the near future, I will post their pre-rodeo performance with the Grimes County Jr. Deputy Sheriff’s Mounted Posse. All I will say now is that it was a good, clean performance. We were really proud of all the kids.
I recently read an article that stated that the demand for goat meat has skyrocketed due to the influx of immigrants in the Houston area. Sale barn prices for goats have also increased noticeably. Knowing these facts did not prepare me for the number of goat projects at the fair. I have never seen so many goats at the fair. There were seven classes of market goats with 16-18 goats in each class. That might not sound like very many for the Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo, but it is for our county fair.
Jake and Kyla both raised and showed a market goat project. Jake placed 3rd in his class, and Kyla placed 8th in her class. Kyla chose to sell her goat at the Freezer Sale, which allowed her to make a profit on her market projects. Jake’s goat is here at the ranch. We are taking it to the processing plant tomorrow. We are going to have some cabrito.
Kyla and Jake also raised market swine projects, which have always been popular at the county fair. Kyla raised a Hampshire pig and Jake raised a Duroc. Hampshires are black with a white belt around their shoulders. They remind one of an oreo. Durocs are a pretty dark red color all over.
Regardless of how hard we tried, Kyla’s pig gained weight really slowly. Market swine at our fair have to weigh between 230-275 to qualify. As her Hamp walked across the scales, it fell below the mark by 6 pounds. So it got disqualified and is in our backyard for the moment. Before her disqualification, she received 11th place on her pig.
Eating on the exact same feed regimen, Jake’s pig weighed 270. Not being an expert in swine, I have to wonder if the weight difference was due in part to metabolism. His pig laid around all the time. Her pig thought it was a dog and ran around the yard playing. It rolled over so you could scratch its tummy. It even made a sound like a bark.
Jake’s hog placed 2nd in his class. We were so excited for him. He sold it in the Premium Sale and did better than we even hoped he would.
Our family’s business is grass fed beef. We enjoy raising market animals for the public. My husband and I are excited that our children are not only learning about cattle and the grass fed beef business, but they are learning how to raise other market animals. We are hardly experts in goats or swine, but we are learning. You have to start somewhere and I am thankful that county fairs remain in our society, which encourage agricultural pursuits.