Every year we try to work the Oink booth or the Promotions booth at the State Fair. I like to do it for two reasons; first I enjoy meeting people and talking to them about raising pigs and preparing pork. Second, I think it’s a good experience for the kids. It teaches them how to support the pig industry through their involvement and how to interact with people.

 Last Saturday the boys worked in the Oink Booth while Dale, Beth and I were in the Promotions booth. The boys spent time with the sow and litter and answered questions, mostly regarding the pigs’ age and how much they weighed. The largest boar is also a great attraction but the ultimate draw has to be the paper pig ears that people get to wear. You see them all over the fairgrounds. I’m not sure what the record is for assembling paper pig ears in one hour, but I know it’s a lot, especially when people are standing three deep to get them.

 In the Promotions booth, questions deal mainly with cooking pork. Most people overcook pork and end up with a dry piece of meat. Four words of advice… Use a Meat Thermometer. This year I was amazed at how many people took the recipes we had on the counter. Many commented that they stop here once a year to get new ones and that we have some of the best recipes. Beth spent most of her four hour shift restocking supplies. She did have to sneak away once to look at the carved butter heads of the Princess Kay of the Milky Way contestants.

 At the end of our shift, the boys came back with stories about pigs and people. Dale and I had a number of good conversations and felt we had the chance to educate a few people on what we do and how to prepare pork. Beth was just happy to hang out with us as you can see by the picture. All in all, a good day promoting pork.

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