The smell of fried food moving throughout the grounds, the sight of children riding a roller coaster and the sound of families enjoying themselves on a warm summer’s night — fair season …
The smell of fried food moving throughout the grounds, the sight of children riding a roller coaster and the sound of families enjoying themselves on a warm summer’s night — fair season in Missouri is one of my favorite times of the year.
Like many of us, I circle the dates for local fairs as soon as they are available. However, fairs are about more than just fun and fellowship. Sure, who doesn’t like a hot funnel cake or a deep-fried candy bar? But take a look closer, and you will see the real star of the show — agriculture.
Whether it’s any of our local fairs or the Missouri State Fair, agriculture has always been, and will remain, the driving force behind these events. Farming is more than tractors and livestock — it’s a way of life and the very heart and soul of our great state.
Yes, the demolition derbies are fun, and the corndogs are delicious, but it is much more important to highlight the hard work of tomorrow’s farmers and ranchers.
These young men and women spend countless hours preparing for this time of year. Whether it’s training goats or raising chickens, they earn their moment in the spotlight. At a time when a growing number of our sons and daughters are choosing to pursue careers off the family farm, fairs still inspire the next generation of Missourians to take up agriculture as a career, that’s more important now than ever.
As we wrap up another year at the Cole County Fair, I wanted to take a moment and congratulate my grandson, Trent, for his hard work. In his age group, his goat was crowned market grand champion and reserve sale champion. I have seen firsthand the work he puts in and his dedication to his animals.
As I watched Trent and his peers show their animals, I was assured that the future of agriculture in Missouri is in good hands. These are the farmers and ranchers of tomorrow, and they will be responsible for carrying our state’s proud agricultural heritage forward.
The Missouri State Fair is scheduled for Aug. 11 to 21 in Sedalia. The theme of this year’s fair is “Buckets of Fun,” and the fair is sure to have something for everyone. For a full list of events on the state fair, visit mostatefair.com.
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