A collective sigh of disappointment resonated through the community when the Davis County Fair was cancelled a month ago due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
The news this week is more upbeat as the Davis County Extension Council, in conjunction with ISU Extension, released plans to host 4-H and FFA Shows at the Davis County Fairgrounds during the traditional week of the fair — July 13-18.
“We’re excited to be able to host shows for our 4-H and FFA members this summer,” said Nick Melvin, chairperson of the Davis County Extension Council. “We’ll put forth our best efforts and exercise due diligence in following the official safety rules allowing this to happen.”
One of those rules is to not have all animals on the grounds at the same time. Therefore, shows will be in and out in one day and no livestock will stay on the fairgrounds overnight.
All volunteers, staff, spectators, and participants are expected, or at least strongly encouraged, to wear face masks and practice physical distancing at all times during the week.
The Dairy Show is scheduled for Monday, July 13, with check-in at 8 a.m. followed by the show at 10 a.m. Only senior showmanship will be judged. Stall assignments will be by family with space between families.
Static exhibits (those entered in the 4-H Building) will be dropped off at a designated outdoor location on Monday. Judging of the static exhibits will take place on Tuesday, July 14. Exhibitors will not be allowed to be present during the judging.
Check-in for the Sheep Show is scheduled for 12-3 p.m. on Wednesday, July 15, with the show to follow at 4:30 p.m. Families will have designated tack and fitting areas, and wash racks will have limited availability.
There will be no more than 10 exhibitors in the ring at any one time with classes broken up if necessary. Only senior showmanship will be judged.
The Horse Show is scheduled for Thursday, July 16, with check-in set for 8 a.m. beside horse trailers.
The Meat and Dairy Goat Show is also scheduled for Thursday with check-in between 12 noon and 2 p.m. and the show at 5 p.m.
Families will have designated tack and fitting areas, and wash racks will have limited availability.
As with the Sheep Show, there will be no more than 10 exhibitors in the ring at a time; only senior showmanship will be judged; and there will be no bleacher seating.
The Beef Show is set for Friday, July 17, with check-in from 7:30-9:30 a.m. and the show at 1 p.m. Only one family will be allowed at the scales at a time, and stall assignments will be by family with space between families. Only senior showmanship will be judged.
Check-in for the Rabbit and Poultry Show will be from 7-9 a.m. Friday with the show beginning at 10:30 a.m. Stalls will be assigned by family. Only senior showmanship will be judged.
The Swine Show is scheduled for Saturday with check-in from 6-8 a.m. and the show beginning at 10 a.m. Stalls will be assigned ahead of time, and there will be limited space at wash racks. There will be no pen of three classes, and only senior showmanship will be held.
Again, there will be no bleachers and spectators must stand or bring their own lawn chairs. Those who do not have family in the show ring are asked to step away and make room for family members of those who are exhibiting.
The Livestock Auction is set for Saturday, July 18, at 5 p.m., but buyers will not be able to see the animals they are purchasing. Exhibitors selling their animals will enter the ring at the time of selling. It is the exhibitor’s responsibility to deliver the animal to the destination of the buyer’s choosing. The sale will take place in the big show pavilion.
To promote safety for all involved,
• masks and hand sanitizer will be provided as necessary;
• show pavilions and their contents will be disinfected before and after showing;
• scales will be disinfected between families;
• there will only be one bathroom open and that will be sanitized throughout each day of the show.
Audience size will be limited to allow for social distancing. Each family will be provided with six wristbands per show involved in to disseminate as they wish. There will be an admissions gate for each show.
Exhibitors must enter their exhibits between June 22 and July 9.
Fair Special Edition: Iowa 4-H and FFA Livestock
State Fair exhibits will be selected during the Davis County shows as usual, and those winning livestock exhibits will be eligible to participate in the 4-H and FFA Livestock Shows at the Iowa State Fairgrounds during the month of August. Those shows will be spread out over three weeks and held Thursday through Saturday August 6-8, 13-15, and 20-22.
There will be no in-person static exhibits or judging held on the Iowa State Fairgrounds this year, but a virtual alternative is being considered and details will be announced soon on the Iowa State Fair website along with details on obtaining