Palo Alto County 4-H and FFA members planning to exhibit beef animals for the 2013 Palo Alto County Fair will need to weigh in their market steers, market heifers, and feeder pens. The weigh-in date for Palo Alto County exhibitors will be Saturday, Jan. 5, 2013, from 12 noon to 2 p.m. at the Palo Alto County Fairgrounds in Emmetsburg.
For any beef animal to be eligible to show at county and district fairs, the basic weigh-in must take place. However, if an exhibitor wishes to take an animal to show at the Iowa State Fair or Ak-Sar-Ben livestock shots, calves must also go through a state verification process. Palo Alto County officials are planning to conduct this state verification process on the same day as the regular weigh-in. The retinal imaging procedure will be used to meet the state verification requirements.
Beef animals that will be shown only at the Palo Alto County Fair or at district fairs will just need to be weighed on Jan. 5 and will not need to go through the retinal imaging process. It is requested that animals being weighed in be ear-tagged at home prior to the weigh-in day. Official ear tags may be purchased at the Palo Alto County Extension Office in Emmetsburg.
It is important that anyone who has a scheduling conflict with the Jan. 5 weigh in date must contact the Palo Alto County Extension Office at least one week before the weigh-in date so that alternate arrangements can be made. \For exhibitors to be eligible to show at the 2011 Iowa State Fair or Ak-Sar-Ben Livestock Shows, they must make sure their animals go through the state verification process. These animals are not to be tagged ahead of time and should come with the exhibitors other animals on Jan. 5. State verification animals will be weighed and then run through a head chute where they will be tagged and a retinal image taken.
As part of the state verification process, both the exhibitor and a parent will be required to sign verification forms for each entry. If a parent or exhibitor cannot be present at the weigh-in event, a signed waiver must accompany the animal. Parent and exhibitor waivers are available at the Palo Alto County Extension office. All verification fees must be paid at the time of the weigh-in and verification.
Exhibitors planning to state verify calves should contact the Extension Office by Wednesday, Jan. 2, in order to give the staff an idea of the number of animals in order to allow for adequate supplies for the verification process.
A new facet to the weigh-in for 2013 involves Heifer projects. Exhibitors may identify their heifers for the Iowa State Fair on the Jan. 5 weigh-in date, and by doing so, will be allowed to show the animal as either a market heifer or a breeding heifer.
Any exhibitor verifying their weigh-in information in 4HOnline, must remember that the exhibitor must have an "active" status, meaning they must be enrolled in 4-H at the time of the weigh-in day.
Any 4-H or FFA exhibitor with questions regarding this process should contact the Palo Alto County Extension office at 712-852-2865 or Palo Alto County Beef Superintendent, Brian Rouse at 712-260-7731.