The Harford Fair in Susquehanna County was greatly missed by the employees of Cabot this year. Many are involved with the community organizations that participate in the fair, including 4-H groups that count on the occasion for the culmination of their annual projects.
When the fair was canceled due to COVID-19 concerns, Cabot decided to focus on those youths and help others provide them a more meaningful 4-H experience than simply turning in their project books at the end of the year.
We worked with the newly formed SusCo Youth Agricultural Foundation to orchestrate a smaller-scale livestock show at the Harford Fairgrounds on Aug. 14 and a virtual online auction for the animals with Lopatofsky Auction LLC of New Milford on Aug. 15. Cabot’s initial donation of $2,500 helped to cover liability insurance for the livestock show and other costs associated with the show and auction.
Foundation secretary Cathy Bewley estimates that about a third of the 4-H youths who might have participated in the fair registered for Friday’s livestock showing. An equal number that were not showing had registered their animals for the virtual auction. Hogs dominated the competition, but cows, lambs and sheep were also paraded through the arena during the course of the warm summer day.
The youths and their parents were delighted that something could be done to help the children and for the support of all of the sponsors, including Cabot. “It’s great that they can do this for the kids,” Ashley DuPue of Montrose remarked. “It’s a lot of hard work, and they deserve a lot of recognition.”
“I was super excited that we would get a chance to show our animals,” said Ashley’s daughter, Madison Atherton-DePue. Her market hog, Cookie, and a sow named Cream both finished second in their lightweight classes.
Next to her in the ring was her best friend, Madyson Sebring, who bested her in the lightweight division and took the Grand Champion Market Hog award for Ely, for which Cabot was the high bidder online. Madyson wasn’t particularly excited about having to wear a mask in the show ring, but she sure was happy that Cabot bought her pig.
In fact, we spent $3,900 at the virtual auction, also purchasing lambs from Presleigh Brace and Aiden Empet and the Grand Champion Dairy Steer from Friday’s show, owned by Morgan Tweed of Hop Bottom.