The COVID-19 pandemic means that from California to New York and everywhere in between, fairs and festivals are a no go this summer.
But in an agricultural hub like Missoula, the idea of having no fair at all just didn’t feel right, so they’re reworking the normal events and focusing solely on the 4H and FFA projects.
The excitement kicked off on Sunday as 4H and FFA kids from across Missoula County brought their projects to the fairgrounds-the biggest project being livestock.
The focus of the fair this year will be the livestock sale on Saturday where people can come out in person, buy an animal, or a portion of an animal, and stock up their freezers with locally grown meat.
Senior sheep showman McKenna Quirk told MTN News she’s heading off to Bozeman next week to begin her college career and what she earns from the sale will help pay for college expenses.
After spending the year raising her sheep, she knows it’ll be hard to say goodbye, but she says that’s how she can personally contribute to the food supply.
I think what's really important to remember too is that these animals do also teach us so much they teach us about responsibility. They teach us about our future careers," Quirk said.
"I personally am going into veterinary medicine, so working with him has taught me so much about how to prepare for that career," she continued. "So, these animals have such a great purpose, and that's always what I have to keep in mind, especially during the summer.
People who want to support kids like McKenna at the sale on Saturday are encouraged to pre-register here.
Coming up on Wednesday's 5:30 News we’ll hear more about how the Western Montana Fair is making the most of this year’s circumstances.