The Ohio forecast for this week looks considerably cooler than the 90-plus weather we had last week, and I’ll gladly take it.

When I woke up this morning, it was actually a little chilly in my Wooster, Ohio, house. On Saturday I worked all day at the Stark County Fair and it was the exact opposite — heat and humidity pushing the heat index to 100-plus degrees.

Hot everywhere

The effects of the heat were evident in every corner of the Stark fair. People wiped sweat from their faces and downed bottles of water and soda nonstop. And I spent a large part of the day inside the air-conditioned junior fair building reviewing pictures and chatting with fair staff.

While people were rightfully concerned about themselves, it was very encouraging to see the degree of care exhibitors gave to their animals, even on such a hot day. Each time I walked across the fairgrounds, I spotted someone providing water to their animals, spraying them off or adjusting a fan.

It’s exactly the kind of care exhibitors should provide their animals in that kind of weather, and it was encouraging to see it in action.

In just a few months, the focus will turn to keeping the animals warm and dry, and free from strong winds and drafts. You probably won’t see those efforts so much, because they’ll happen on the individual farms where the animals are kept.

A good example

I don’t think anyone would want the kind of heat we had last week for their fair, but the exhibitors and parents at the Stark fair sure did a good job of responding. And they put on a good show — albeit unintended — of what animal care is all about.

Here are some pictures of the work they did and the animals they cared for.

Chris Kick lives in Wooster, Ohio. An American FFA Degree recipient, he holds a bachelor’s in creative writing from Ashland University. He spends his free time on his grandparents’ farms in Wayne and Holmes counties.
Chris Kick
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