Missouri State Fair Director Mark Wolfe recently announced two programs for the 2016 event that will provide Missouri 4-H and FFA youth exhibitors with opportunities to educate fairgoers about Missouri agriculture and showing livestock.

Let’s Talk Livestock and the new Barnyard Story Time will offer fairgoers of all ages a chance to get up close with a variety of farm animals during their Fair visit. These programs will be offered to the public free of charge and occur daily at various locations on the fairgrounds, Aug. 11-21.

“The Let’s Talk Livestock and Barnyard Story Time programs are beneficial to both our Fair exhibitors and to the general fairgoing public as they encourage communication between the two groups,” Wolfe said. “They also support the Fair’s mission of serving as an extension of the agriculture classroom.”

Barnyard Story Time is designed with young fairgoers in mind and is making its debut at the 2016 Fair. Missouri 4-H and FFA youth exhibitors will read their favorite agricultural children’s book daily on the Kids Stage, and following the reading, provide a “show and tell” session with the animal(s) featured in the book they just read.

Let’s Talk Livestock, sponsored by Tractor Supply Co., is returning to the Fair for its second year. Missouri 4-H and FFA youth exhibitors and their families have volunteered their time to conduct demonstrations during the 2016 event. The featured animal will be present at each 20 minute demonstration with an opportunity for questions and interaction from fairgoers. Exhibitors will focus on animal preparation and nutrition and share personal stories, including information on showing livestock at the State Fair.

Demonstrations are planned for sheep, swine, poultry, beef and dairy cattle, goats, rabbits and draft horses. Complete schedules with demonstration locations will be available at Fair information booths as well as included in the daily schedule of events. The Let’s Talk Livestock program received numerous awards for its agriculture education outreach from the International Association of Fairs and Expositions (IAFE) in 2015.

The Missouri State Fair is the premier agriculture showcase in the state, with approximately 4,000 Missouri 4-H and Missouri FFA exhibitors each year, and 30,000 entries annually.

The 114th Missouri State Fair, themed “See What Crops Up,” will be held Aug. 11-21 in Sedalia. For more information about concerts, events and other Fair activities, visit www.mostatefair.com, follow the Fair on Facebook and Twitter, or call 1-800-422-FAIR (3247).

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