Wednesday night, the stands were filled with crowds cheering on the
kids. After Lesleigh Bennett sang the National Anthem, the Clover
Cheer Club opened the evening’s event with a cheer to inspire
In the scrambles, children organized by age groups
worked to catch different sizes and types of animals turned loose on
Sixteen adorable children between ages five and seven
scurried around trying to catch one of the many chickens. The kids
learned just how challenging it could be as the chickens dodged back
and forth hoping to escape capture.
As each child caught the chicken, they were given a
goodie bag and one lucky child caught the golden rooster, winning a
Next up, 12 children between the ages of eight and10 tried to
harness one of six wily goats who were scrambling across the track.
The first child to catch a goat wrestled with it as he tried to get
a rope around it. Goat number five gave kids a run for their money
before finally getting caught.
Then 12 pre-teens and young teens between 10 and 15
years of age struggled and wrangled with six slick pigs slathered
with conditioner, which can be a daunting task. To make it even more
challenging, the kids arms are covered in soapsuds.
The slippery pigs kept trying to slip out of their
grasps and there was some added excitement when two pigs escaped
into the stands and tried to slip under the bleachers before being
caught and taken back to the track.
For the final and most exciting part of the evening,
18 kids between the ages of twelve and eighteen participated in
a calf scramble with them struggling to harness a big feisty calf
that can weight up to 350 pounds. This feat took a lot of strength
and skill and many times, the calves dragged the teenagers around
the track as they tried to rope them. Still the sweaty and exhausted
kids persevered as they attempted to catch a calf.
Those who caught calves get to keep them to raise for
next year’s steer competition to be judged next year during the
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Eight of last year’s winners brought their calves
back to be judged on grooming, confirmation and showmanship. The
overall winner of this year’s steer competition was Vivienne Pratt.
The judge commended all of the steer competition contestants for
their public speaking ability.
Judges call the fair’s calf scrambles the best show
and granddaddy of all other scrambles.
A big announcement
was made during the 4-H Scrambles Night. Pam Tibbs will be inducted
into the 4-H Hall of Fame at the Illinois State Fair on August 13th
The evening included the awarding of scholarships,
recognition of seniors finishing out their many years in 4-H and a
4-H leader being inducted into the 4-H Hall of Fame.
Another event before the calf scramble was an alumni
game where males working in groups of two stack approximately 25 hay
bales on a trailer and then unload and stack them again on the
ground. Those who completed the task in the fastest time, which was
less than five minutes, won the competition.
The evening’s events were lively and entertaining.
One audience member who had never been to a scramble said the kids
were cute and seemed to enjoy themselves. The kids watching the
event were often wide-eyed with excitement.