I love sitting on a showbox. One, you can just sit and take in the buzz happening all around you. Second, because you have declared yourself as a livestock exhibitor at the show, people will stop and ask questions.
The leading question is “can we pet her?” as they look with awe at the cows. And once you say yes, it’s like the excitement of Christmas morning as the kids and parents walk with you onto the bedpack.
I smile because parents start shooting piles of pictures or filming the experience for posterity.
It’s easy to forget that those things farmers take for granted as an everyday occurrence, such as petting a calf, is a once-in-a-lifetime experience for many. And once the petting begins, so come the questions… "What does she eat? Where do they live? How do cows start milking?" In those few moments, farmers can put a face to the mystery of agriculture. And those answers given will impact these visitors for many years to come. It is one of the few ties they will have to a farmer or farm.
However, given the choice between people “Googling” answers versus asking a farmer at the Farm Show, I opt for asking a farmer.
If you have a great “agvocating” Farm Show story, I’d love to hear about it.
-- Charlene M. Shupp Espenshade, Special Sections Editor