Junior fair arena all a-flutter during poultry show

| October 1, 2018

Mike Murphy of Athens County prepares to judge the poultry show at the Coshocton County Fair on Saturday, Sept. 29 in the junior fair arena.

COSHOCTON – The junior fair arena was buzzing with nervous excitement early Saturday morning, Sept. 29 as 4-H and FFA members readied their birds to be judged.

This was Jaden Art’s first time showing at the fair. She and her chicken, Nug, short for Chicken Nugget, entered the arena for the first time this year and Art said she was a bit nervous but excited.

“I’m looking forward to the showmanship because I’ve studied a lot,” said Art. “I’m nervous about him [Nug] freaking out because he does that a lot.”

Art, who is a member of Ridgewood FFA, has had Nug for eight weeks and has been preparing him for showing ever since.

“You have to feed and water them three times a day, handle them, and make sure they’re used to you,” she said about caring for her bird. “I like to spend time with him so he gets used to humans.”

Chanelle Robinson and Remi Mitchell were waiting just outside the arena to show their birds, a duck and turkey respectively.

This was Robinson’s second year showing a duck at the fair. She is a member of Lucky Learners 4-H Club.

“There’s a lot of cleaning the pen out, so it’s mostly keeping them clean,” she said about caring for her duck.

Robinson has had Devin the Duck since last summer and has been training him to be shown at the fair.

“I get really nervous showing, but I enjoy it and I have fun,” said Robinson.

Mitchell entered the arena with her turkey not long after. She is a member of Magic Makers 4-H Club and said that keeping a turkey clean is not an easy task.

“The hardest part [about taking care of a turkey] is you have to keep them white,” she said.

The judge for the poultry show was Mike Murphy from Athens County.

“For the showmanship portion, I’m looking for knowledge of their bird, control in the ring, answering questions, and as each group goes up, from beginning to past winners, I expect a lot more out of them,” he said. “For the market portion, I’m looking for meat quality, no bruising, the size of the meat, and just a high-quality bird and how they’re taken care of.”

He said he tries to make the kids feel more comfortable in the arena before he begins to judge.

“I try to make the kids feel at-ease and I joke with them,” he said. “I just want to know their knowledge of the bird.”

Category: People & Places

About the Author ()

I have been employed at the Coshocton County Beacon since September 2009 as a news reporter and assistant graphic artist. I am a 2004 graduate of Newcomerstown High School and a 2008 graduate of Capital University with a bachelor’s degree in Professional Writing. I am married to John Scott and live in Newcomerstown. We have two beautiful daughters, Amelia Grace Scott and Leanna Rose Scott.

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