Livestock Show set for fairgrounds

Published 12:00 am Friday, July 3, 2020

Event will run from July 14-16

ROME TOWNSHIP — When it was announced in May that the Lawrence County Fair was canceled due to the COVID-19 pandemic, many were concerned for the hundreds of 4-H members in the county who had spent moths working on animal projects to show at the event.

Fortunately, volunteers stepped forward to organize an independent event to keep an opportunity open for the area’s youth.

Email newsletter signup

The Lawrence County Livestock Show will take place from Tuesday, July 14 through Thursday, July 16 at the Lawrence County Fairgrounds, during week the fair had been scheduled.

The event is organized by Carrie Cheek and Rob Calaway and is independent of the Lawrence County Fair Board and 4-H.

Due to rules, those organizations are not able to actively take part in the event, though members of the fair board, such as president Randy Lambert and vice president Chris Collier, have said they hope to see it succeed.

Both Cheek and Calaway come from a lengthy background in the fair. He serves on the fair board and their daughter has been a top winner in many of its competitions over the last several years. And it will be their colleagues who staff the event.

“It’s all volunteers,” Cheek said. “From fair families.”

Donations have been raised to cover the cost and the fairgrounds will be leased for the event, with all activities taking place in the main barn.

Cheek said the event is open to youth from Lawrence County, who must register, and their eligibility will be verified. The show will feature competitions for rabbits, chickens, hogs, goats, lambs and cattle and will award grand and reserve champions.

A showman award will also go to a winner in each species category, Cheek said.

She said, like the fair, winners will receive banners and sponsors have made contributions to give rewards to the youth as well.

In the wake of fair cancellations, similar shows have been organized across Ohio at both the state and county level, Cheek said.

One difference from the fair is that there will be no auction at the end and the event is non-terminable.

“But there will people there to buy,” Cheek said, noting that all of the steers have been sold in advance.

Cheek said participants can drop off animals at check-in on Monday, July 13, or bring them on the day of their competitions. All animals must be off the grounds by 1 p.m. Friday, July 17.

She said, as of Monday, there were more than 60 people registered to take part, with many having projects in multiple categories.

Cheek said one special feature of the show will be at 2 p.m. on Wednesday, when children will get an opportunity to learn how to show animals in a showmanship clinic. The event is open to all and not just those who have experience or are part of 4-H programs.

“If they’ve never shown before, we can hook them up with an animal and an adult,” she said.

Cheek said the event is open to the public at no admission cost and there will be concessions available, including ice cream, lemonade and others to come.

She said the vendors will also be set up so that they can sell to all, including those who just want to stop in for fair food.

“You can drive in and get it and it’s safe to go on,” she said.

She said health and safety will be a priority and social distancing will be in effect, with households or groups attending together asked to stay six feet apart. She said there will be handwashing stations set up and toilet facilities will be sanitized frequently.

She said people can wear masks if they choose, but they will not be mandatory, as it is an outside event in the open-air barn.

For more information on the show and to register, visit the Lawrence County Livestock Show page on Facebook at

4-H members show their rabbits at the 2019 Lawrence County Fair. Although this year’s fair is canceled, an independent event, the Lawrence County Livestock Show, will take place at the fairgrounds from July 14-16. (The Ironton Tribune | Heath Harrison)

2020 Lawrence County Livestock Show schedule

Monday, July 13
9 a.m.-6 p.m.: Check-in/weigh-in for species staying all week

Tuesday, July 14
7-9 a.m.: Check-in/weigh-in for chickens, lambs and goats
10 a.m.: Market chicken show, fancy poultry show,
chicken/poultry showmanship
2 p.m.: Breeding lamb show, breeding goat show
6 p.m.: Market lamb show, lamb showmanship,
market goat show, goat showmanship

Wednesday, July 15
7-9 a.m.: Check-in/weigh-in for rabbits and hogs
10 a.m.: Breeding rabbit show, market rabbit show
and rabbit showmanship
2 p.m.: Showmanship clinic for ages 9 and under
6 p.m.: Market hog show, hog showmanship

Thursday, July 16
7-9 a.m.: Check-in/weigh-in for beef breeding/
beef feeders/steers
2 p.m.: Beef feeders, beef breeding
6 p.m.: Market steer show, steer showmanship