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Stanislaus County Fair issues livestock changes, updates
The Stanislaus County Fair is instituting several changes to the livestock exhibits, including an ethics and animal welfare training and a time change for the heifer sales. - photo by Journal file photo

Deep fried food, thrilling amusement rides, and live music — all of these things come to mind when thinking of the Stanislaus County Fair. However for most people, the main event they look forward to year after year is livestock exhibitions.

To prepare for this year’s extravaganza, the Stanislaus County Fair has issued various changes, one of which introduces the idea of ethics and animal welfare training for exhibitors.   

Although not required, it is strongly recommended that livestock exhibitors complete ethics and animal welfare training prior to the 2015 Stanislaus County Fair.

“This is optional this year, but we are in the discussion stages of potentially implementing it as a requirement in 2016,” said livestock superintendent John Mendes. “This training allows our young people to get to know all of the stakeholders involved in the animal livestock industry and understand the entire process.”

Amongst other updates, the 48th Annual Replacement Heifer Sale has also undergone a minor time change for 2015.

“Traditionally this sale has started at 7 p.m., but the committee decided to move it up by one hour to 6 p.m. since it was getting a little late in the evening when were done,” said Mendes. 

Also new this year is a ruling that states that livestock and small animal showmanship division winners will no longer be eligible to move up to the next class for competition.

“In the past what we’ve done is if a young person were to win a division, they would have the option to move up to the next division immediately, which were usually with students of an older class,” said Mendes. “This was stressful on the animal and the exhibitor since they were showing the animal twice, back to back.”

Instead, the livestock superintendent reports that livestock and small animal showmanship division winners will automatically be moved up to the next division the following year, regardless of age.

With the 2015 Stanislaus County Fair projecting an estimated 1,750 animals, Mendes looks forward to a number of aspects, including improved facilities, increased animal comfort efforts, and interactions with this year’s exhibitors.

“I think we had a great fair last year because of a lot of good, positive attitudes,” said Mendes. “Going into this year’s fair, we will see continuing members as well as get to know new exhibitors who are coming into the program this year.”

The 2015 Stanislaus County Fair is scheduled to take place from July 10 to July 19. For more information, visit