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By Echo Menges
After several challenging years due to the pandemic, the 2022 Knox County 4-H/FFA Fair Week roared back last week.
For the first time since 2019, Fair Week hosted a “more normal” atmosphere closer to the traditional community support Knox County offers to 4-H and FFA programs, their members and volunteers. The community gathered and enjoyed Fair Week shows and evening meals in higher numbers ending a memorable week with a remarkable sale.
Fair meals returned to the Knox County Courthouse Courtyard with all five evenings being hosted by local groups, which were challenged by the current high pricing of foods and carried out anyway.
The Citizens Bank of Edina hosted the traditional Complimentary Meal on Monday, which was well attended serving roughly 250 barbecued hamburger and hotdog meals and followed by the Knights of Columbus annual steak and baked potato dinner on Tuesday, always delicious, serving roughly 125 meals.
The Knox County 4-H Council pulled together a hog roast for Wednesday evening somewhat last minute, however, with plenty of food and smiles for over 100 hungry fair goers.
The Knox County Chamber of Commerce’s barbecued pork steaks didn’t disappoint serving roughly 100 meals, and the Edina United Methodist Church served 185 tasty fried tenderloin meals ahead of the final event on Friday, which was the big sale.
The week hosted a traditional schedule beginning with the Art Hall judging, Dog Show judging and awards, Art Hall Awards and Royalty Coronation on Monday, July 11, animal shows throughout the week and finally the sale on Friday, July 15.
This year’s sale hosted a slew of 4-H and FFA supporters who payed handsomely for fair entries with auction prices peaking at hundreds to well over one thousand dollars for entries. Several supporters were refusing items and insisting the youth hold on to them.
The sale ended with a bidding war between Jerry and Janice Reeves of Edina and Chuck Schram representing Cordelio.
The final item on the auction block was Hailey Luthenauer’s sheep fetching $2,100 from Reeves – the highest bid item for this year.
“I figured out he wasn’t going to stop,” said Cordelio representative Chuck Schram with a smile. “So I did.”
The two shook hands and laughed about the bidding war afterward and Reeves was excited the bid was taken so high.
“I came here for this. It’s personal,” said Reeves with a smile. “She’s a good kid. I’m glad he helped drive it up. She deserves it. She puts a lot of work into it.”
“It’s back,” said Crystal Murr, Knox County 4-H Youth Programs Associate. “This was a good year and it felt good to see so much community support for our youth. I was blown away by the support we received at the sale.”
With the Knox County communities support of the 4-H and FFA programs strengthening, this looks to be the last year Fair Week will be held on the Edina Town Square. If donations continue like they have this year, Fair Week and many other 4-H and FFA activities will be held at the Edina City Lake once the coming fairgrounds infrastructure is in place.
Look for more fair coverage on pages 2 and 10 in this week’s newspaper, and even more in next week’s paper.