County Fair

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County Fair Header

We believe that the Des Moines County Fair can be an exciting, educational and fun experience for everyone! The Extension Staff, Fair Board Members and FFA Instructors work closely with youth and adults to help ensure a positive exhibit environment for youth to showcase their year-long project work.

  • May 15: Livestock ID Deadline
  • July 1: YQCA Certification Deadline
  • July 1: FairEntry Deadline
  • July 10: Clothing Event Judging Day
  • July 15: FairEntry $50 late fee Deadline
  • July 20: Fair Set-Up Day
  • July 21: Horse and Pony Show
  • July 22: Static Judging
  • July 23: Livestock Can Arrive
  • July 23 - July 29: DES MOINES COUNTY FAIR
  • August 8 - 18: Iowa State Fair

Clothing, Communication & Static Exhibits

Clothing

Judging will be on Wednesday, July 10 at Southeastern Community College beginning at 10am. 

There are four divisions this year:

  • Fashion Revue: is for clothing project area members who will model an outfit they have constructed, hand-knitted, machine-knitted, or crocheted during the current 4-H year.
  • Clothing Selection: is for selected or purchased outfits that represent the 4-H member’s goal or intended use based on individual or group experiences: choosing shopping alternatives; evaluating fit, quality, and construction features; and comparing prices.
  • $20 Challenge (replaces the $15 Challenge): is for 4-H members to model an outfit purchased for $20 or less from resale venues such as garage sales, consignment, or thrift stores, etc., that represents an intended use for the selected outfit.
  • Innovative Design (new in 2023):  encourages creativity and out-of-the-box thinking when creating an outfit. These designs can be theatrical costumes, cosplay, wearable technology, sustainable/ upcycled fashion, and/or outfits that use unconventional materials. The garment(s) may be modeled by the exhibitor or the individual it was designed for.

Members are divided by division: Junior, Intermediate, and Senior, and will meet with a judge to discuss their clothing report form and model their outfit. Report forms MUST be completed and brought to judging on the 10th. A schedule will be mailed out in July. 

Garments entered in the Clothing Event can also be entered as an exhibit in the Family & Consumer Science Department to be judged on Monday, July 22. Be sure to add this to your static entries by July 1st! Each participant is required to take part in the Runway Show at the fair on Saturday evening, July 27, 2024.

Forms:

Awardrobe Clothing Event Report Form

Clothing Event Report Form - Junior/Intermediate

Writing a Clothing Event Commentary Guide

Design: Exploring the Elements & Principles in Clothing

Tip Sheet: Clothing & Fashion

Communications

Tuesday, July 23: Share the Fun

  • 7 p.m. - Share the Fun 

Share the Fun will round out the day at 7:00 p.m. in conjunction with the Queen Pageant in the Exhibit Hall. Share the Fun provides an opportunity for 4-H members to share their skills and talents before an audience purely for the sake of enjoyment.
 

Wednesday, July 24: Communications Day

  • 11:00 a.m. - Educational Presentations

Educational Presentations provide an opportunity for 4-H members to demonstrate communication skills by presenting knowledge, information, or a process to an audience.

These presentations are like talks or demonstrations done on the club level. The educational presentation should be an outgrowth of the member's 4-H experience.

  • Extemporaneous Speaking immediately follows Educational Presentations

The Extemporaneous Speaking Contest is open to all 9-12th grade 4-H members in Des Moines County.

This contest is designed to encourage the development of the communication skills by providing an opportunity to think, organize thoughts, prepare a speech, and to answer questions when given a limited amount of preparation time. 

  • 12:30 pm - Working Exhibits

Working Exhibits provide an opportunity for 4-H members to communicate, interact with, and teach an audience in an informal and experimental way. 

Members set up interactive demonstrations to provide instruction on how to make something or provide educational information. 

The entry deadline for all communications is July 1 in FairEntry. A schedule of presenters will be mailed in July.

Communication Exhibitors are expected to be present Saturday evening, July 27, at 5 p.m. for Communication Night that will be held in conjunction with the Runway Show in Exhibit Hall. 

Communication Forms:

Communication Event Project Entry Form

Tip Sheet: Communication

 
Static Exhibits

Judging Day: Monday, July 22 at 8:00am

Photography:

Food & Nutrition:

Gardening & Horticulture:

Thrifty Meal Challenge:

Poster Communication:

  • 2024 Poster Communication Themes...
    • 4-H is...
    • Join 4-H
    • I <3 4-H (2023 National 4-H Week theme)
    • Explore the Jungle of Opportunities (2024 Iowa 4-H Youth Conference theme)
    • 4-H Fever (Variation of the 2024 Iowa State Fair theme)
  • Poster Form

General Forms/Resources:

Livestock & Pets

Beef & Dairy

Animal Care & Management Disclosure Form

Care of Animals in a Public Setting

Des Moines County 4-H/FFA Bucket Bottle Record Form

Beef Show: Friday, July 26 at 8:00 a.m.

Dairy Cattle & Goat Show: Wednesday, July 24 at 10 a.m.

Goats

Animal Care & Management Disclosure Form

Care of Animals in a Public Setting

Des Moines County 4-H/FFA Bucket Bottle Record Form

Dairy Goat & Cattle Show: Wednesday, July 24 at 10:00 a.m. 

Meat Goat Show: Saturday, July 27, 30 minutes AFTER sheep show

Weigh-in will be held May 4, 2024, from 8:00-11:00 a.m. at the Des Moines County Fairgrounds. ALL State Fair nominations must be retinal scanned!

Market Goats should be born on or after October 1, 2023. Exhibitors can bring up to four breeding does. Exhibitors can bring up to four market wethers/does. ALL goats must attend weigh-in to register scrapie tag number except Bottle Kid Goats.

Scrapie tags are again required for all sheep and goats to show at the 2024 Des Moines County Fair. Per state health rules, scrapie tags must be in the animal’s ear upon arrival at an exhibition/show. Information about the USDA scrapie program can be found here

Sheep

Animal Care & Management Disclosure Form

Care of Animals in a Public Setting

Des Moines County 4-H/FFA Bucket Bottle Record Form

Sheep Show: Saturday, July 27 at 8:00 a.m.

Weigh-in will be held May 4, 2024, from 8:00-11:00 a.m. at the Des Moines County Fairgrounds. ALL State Fair nominations must be retinal scanned!

Members may weigh-in a maximum of 12 lambs. ALL sheep (market and breeding) must come to weigh-in and have a registered scrapie tag with the exception of Bottle Lambs. Bottle Lambs must have a scrapie tag identified in 4-HOnline 2.0 by May 15th.

Scrapie tags are again required for all sheep and goats to show at the 2024 Des Moines County Fair. Per state health rules, scrapie tags must be in the animal’s ear upon arrival at an exhibition/show. Information about the USDA scrapie program can be found here

Swine

Animal Care & Management Disclosure Form

Care of Animals in a Public Setting

Swine Show: Thursday, July 25 at 8:00am

The Des Moines County Swine Committee has decided that there WILL NOT be an organized swine weigh-in held in Des Moines County again this year.

All 4-H and FFA pigs must be identified by ear notch, ear tag, sex, and color by the individual themselves. Paperwork must be entered by the family no later then May 15, 2024. Each exhibitor is limited to identifying a maximum of 12 pigs.

Production market barrows and gilts were to be weighed by the individual anytime between April 6 and April 13, 2024. Ear notch, ear tag, sex, and color need to be identified in 4-H Online 2.0 by May 15. Any barrow/gilt weighing over 65 pounds will not be eligible for the Production Barrow or Gilt class. Any combination of gits and barrows may be identified on the identification form and entered into 4-H Online 2.0 by May 15. It is not mandatory to have a production market barrow or production market gilt entry to show.

You may identify eight (8) divisions in FairEntry by July 1 and exhibit four (4) pigs in either the individual market gilt class, individual market barrow class, production market barrow class, production market gilt class, single source class, purebred market hog, purebred breeding gilt, or commercial gilt class. Exhibitors may sell two (2) pigs in the auction. The extra pigs may be removed when released or when transportation is available.

Individuals may pick up tags, both county and state fair tags; a tagger; and identification forms from the Des Moines County Extension Office on or after Monday, April 1, 2024. It is important when you come to pick up tags that you know if you are exhibiting at the county level and/or the state level to insure proper tags are sent home with you. REMEMBER TO BRING THE TAGGERS BACK WHEN YOU ARE DONE WITH THEM!

Poultry

Care of Animals in a Public Setting

Poultry Show: Wednesday, July 24 at 1:00 p.m.

Rabbit

Care of Animals in a Public Setting

Rabbit Show: Wednesday, July 24 at 8:30 a.m.

Horse/Pony

Animal Care & Management Disclosure Form

Iowa 4-H Horse Lease Agreement Form

Care of Animals in a Public Setting

Horse Show: Sunday, July 21 

-Arrive and Check-In 1:00 p.m.

-Beginner Horse Show Begins at 2:00 p.m.

-4-H/FFA Horse Show to Follow the completion of the Beginner Show

The mandatory meeting for 2024 Horse Exhibitors is May 6th at the Des Moines County Extension Office at 6:00 p.m. Bring 4-H Online 2.0 login information for ID help.  ALL members must attend the mandatory meeting and at least two (2) riding sessions or no meeting and three (3) riding sessions to be eligible to participate in the 2024 Des Moines County Fair.

  • May 6, 6 p.m.: Mandatory Meeting
  • June 1, 9-11:30 a.m.: Halter and Showmanship
  • June 11, 6:30-8:30 p.m.: Western Pleasure 
  • June 22, 9:30-11:30 a.m.: Walk Trot and Trail Horse Riding 
  • June 25, 6:30-8:30 p.m.: Ranch Horse Pleasure and Handy Horse
  • July 2, 6:30-8:30 p.m.: Reining
  • July 13, 9:30-11:30 a.m.: Speed
  • July 16, 6:30-8:30 p.m.:  English, Egg & Spoon and Vet Check
  • July 21: Des Moines County Fair Horse Show

*** New for Fair 2024...Horses arrive on the fairgrounds at 1:00 p.m., Check-in begins at 1:00 p.m., the Beginner Horse Show begins at 2:00 p.m., and the 4-H/FFA show starts immediately after the Beginner Show is completed.

Dog

Care of Animals in a Public Setting

Dog Show: Thursday, July 25 at 1:00 p.m.

Dog Training Sessions will begin Monday, June 3, at 6:00 p.m. at the fairgrounds. The June 3rd meeting is the Mandatory Meeting for all exhibitors. The sessions will last approximately 1 hour.

Please bring a 6 ft. leather leash, choke collar, water, and a bowl for your animal.

Novice and Experienced exhibitors must attend 4 of 7 dog training sessions with your dog, for safety reasons, and Advanced exhibitors must attend 3 of the 7 dog training sessions with your dog, for safety reasons.

Showmanship will be based partially on these sessions.

The dates for the Dog Training Sessions are as follows:

  • June 3, 6:00 p.m.
  • June 10, 6:00 p.m.
  • June 17, 6:00 p.m.
  • June 24, 6:00 p.m.
  • July 1, 6:00 p.m.
  • July 8, 6:00 p.m.
  • July 15, 6:00 p.m.
  • July 25, 1:00 p.m. - Des Moines County Fair Dog Show