ROSEBURG, Ore. -- 4-H and FFA kids were out in force Thursday morning at the Douglas County Fair, getting ready for the Showmanship competition.
Ian Mignola, 15, says that being there is a culmination of some hard work and something he's looked forward to since he was young. "We live on like, sort of a ranch," he said. "We've always raised animals, so when I was old enough to actually do it, i just started doing it."
When KPIC News asked what he likes best about this competition, he said the 'feel' of the fair. "Just being here mostly, you know, enjoying the fair and everything," he said.
While casual observers may find it amusing to watch kids guiding pigs that are almost as big as they are, there's actually much more than that.
Some parents say it actually helps build the character they want their children to be instilled with.
4-H parent Jeremy Grammon says it can also be a profitable lesson for the kids. "It teaches the kids to take a level of responsibility and pride in what their doing. A lot of the times, these kids are looking at it as an investment, you know. They're learning how to manage money, learning how to think outside of themselves and think about an animal," he said.
Some families say the kids spend the entire year getting ready for fair week, and most spend the 5-days camped out at the fairgrounds.