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That'll Do Pig, That'll Do

4-H critters get plenty of attention at the North Idaho State Fair

COEUR d’ALENE — At just 7 months old, Gerald already weighs 270 pounds.

He is a big pig.

With an attitude.

“He's kind of crazy sometimes,” said Maddie Andres with the Ramsey Raiders 4-H Club. “And actually, this is my alternate because my other pig got hurt. But yeah, he's always been a little spunky.”

Gerald is one of many pigs lounging around at the North Idaho State Fair at the Kootenai County Fairgrounds.

Most were sleeping Monday afternoon, usually a pair to a pen. They were the center of attention, with fairgoers snapping away through bars toward large snouts.

“This one is a monster,” said one boy as he stopped to stare at a pig that stood and snorted, clearly agitated at being awakened from its slumber.

The pigs are in the final stages for the Swine Fitting and Showing Finals at 6 p.m. Wednesday in the Jacklin Building.

Andres, 15, said her family breeds show pigs and Gerald was one of them.

She’s been looking after him since he was a baby on their farm.

“We just raised him and I went to shows all summer and showed him,” said Andres, who is also part of Future Farmers of America.

This is her 10th year of showing at the fair, and fifth with pigs.

“I love showing pigs. It's just like, always been kind of my passion being involved in agriculture,” Andres said.

At this point, Andres wants to keep Gerald clean and happy. She'll feed him supplements so he’ll look his best for the judges.

Gerald seemed content as he fell asleep in his pen.

"He’s a good pig," Andres said.

Maddie Andres' older brother, Cole, is a senior in high school and in his last year of showing at the fair.

“Growing up in being able to show together was a great experience,” Maddie Andres said.

Just outside, Carline Ross of Athol was shearing Larry, an 8-month-old lamb, while Larry’s owner, Ryder Jordan, watched and learned.

“We're just washing and shearing him, getting him cleaned up so that the judge can see everything underneath,” Ross said.

Once the lambs are sheared, they'll sit in their pens and be fed twice a day.

Larry’s next steps in his journey include quality judging with the fitting and showing finals on Friday.

Jordan believes he will do well.

“He's a good-sized lamb,” he said.

Ross is in her fifth year of showing lambs and has three in this year’s show. She also has a market pig and rabbits in the fair.

“I think it's a really good passion. It teaches kids how to be determined, it gives them a good work ethic, it gives you a lot of experience and gives you a good background when you're young," she said.

The North Idaho State Fair runs through Aug. 28. Some of today’s activities include the carnival rides and games, a lumberjack show, decades dress-up contact, watermelon eating contest and the Skillet concert in Findlay Arena.

That'll Do Pig, That'll Do
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