The Livingston County Fairgrounds was a bevy of activity starting at 6 a.m. today (Wednesday) with the familiar sights, sounds, and yes, even smells of rural living.
First on the docket was blood testing of poultry, starting at 6 a.m., followed by the check-in of sheep, goats, rabbits and cattle.
Swine — topping out at around 290 head — began arriving at the fairgrounds on Tuesday. The swine numbers are up about 25 from last year, according to FFA Adviser Leda Schreiner.
Poultry numbers for this year's fair — totaling 104 — were also up by about 20.
The cattle, sheep and goat numbers were about the same as last year. There are 89 cattle entries, 51 sheep entries and 80 goat entries this year. Bucket calves (calves born after Jan. 1, 2013) are down slightly this year to 40 entries. There were 18 hams entered.
Animal began at 1 p.m. today (Wednesday) with the poultry show in the north barn and the swine show in the expo center.
With nearly 300 head of swine, the swine show is likely to last until 6 p.m.
Aside from the animal shows, there is plenty to do at the fairgrounds. This afternoon, commercial booths, 4-H demonstrations and the 4-H entrepreneurship market were to be set up until 8 p.m. The talent show is slated for 7 p.m. in the outdoor arena.
Animal shows continue Thursday with the rabbit show starting at 8 a.m., as well as the sheep show, followed by the goat show.
The dairy show will start at 1 p.m. Thursday in the Expo Center, followed by the breeding cattle show and the feeder calves.
The steer show starts at 3 p.m. Thursday.
An ice cream social, sponsored by the 4-H Foundation, will be from 5 until 6:30 p.m.
The super teen contest starts at 6:30 p.m.
Then on Friday, Farm Bureau is hosting its traditional breakfast at the shelter house, free to exhibitors.
The Clover Kid animal parade will start at 9 a.m. Friday in the Expo Center, followed by the bucket calf show at 10 a.m.
An appreciation picnic will be from 5 until 6:30 p.m., followed by the market animal sale.
From now throughout 6 p.m. Friday, the approximate 1,200 projects entered by 4-H and FFA members will be on display at the Mildred Litton Building for public viewing.
FFA Adviser Rusty Black said that the exhibitors look forward to showing their animals at the fair.
"It's the culmination of a lot of work," he said, noting that taking care of animals may mean doing chores at 5 a.m. or 1 a.m.
"They have been dedicated to it for a long time and they can see how things turn out competing against their friends.