PUTNAM COUNTY, WV (WOWK) – The Putnam County Fair would have been this week, but just like many summer favorites, it was canceled because of the pandemic.
However, one of the more popular events lives on, thanks to some creative thinking and some hardworking kids.
The coronavirus has forced many businesses and organizations to get creative this year. So, from the fields of green — to your computer screen! A part of the Putnam County Fair is going virtual this year.
“It is definitely a part of the summer that I look forward to each year to make friends and meet new people … I’ve raised goats for six years for the fair,” 15-year-old Ariel Thomas said.
Thomas has been raising goats for the last six years. She says its a fun past time, but it also requires a lot of patience and hard work. Thomas, like many of the other kids who participate in the auction, use the money they make for a college fund.
“It’s a lot of hard work, you have to be willing to put hard work into it,” she said.
“All of these kids had raised these animals and started their projects long before COVID even became a thing,” Putnam County Fair Vice President Andrew Parsons said. “So we wanted to come up with a plan for them to sell their animal and recoup some of the expenses they had and have some of the experiences they would have at the fair.”
So the livestock portion of the event is being hosted virtually this year and it’s proven to be a success.
“It’s doing very well. We had a good time at the weigh-in and so we are moving forward as best we can,” Parsons said.
With a national meat shortage, the pandemic has made a lot of people seek out locally sourced food. Parsons said they already have agreements with meat processing plants so there won’t be a wait for those who purchase the animals.
The online auction continues through Wednesday, with bidding ending at 5 p.m.