Posters play a big role in rabbit contest at fair

Wednesday, July 26, 2006

When fair goers enter each of the barns to look at the animals being exhibited by the Putnam County youth, they might notice signs bearing the exhibitor's name.

But when they enter the rabbit barn next door to the goat and beef barns, they might notice something a little more creative.

Every year, Putnam County youths decorate the area above and around the cages of their rabbits.

But they also take that creativity a step further with the rabbit poster contest.

Fair goers may have noticed in the fair schedule for Tuesday night something called the Rabbit Posters, Showmanship and Rabbit Contest.

While fair goers may know what showmanship and the contest are about after watching the other youths from the different barns show their animals, they might not know what the poster contest is about.

According the assistant barn supt. Melissa Archer, the poster contest has been a time-honored tradition during the rabbit contest held this year on a Tuesday night.

Archer, who has been in the rabbit barn for nine years, said they have had the poster contest since she started, but it has probably been going on longer than that.

So what is a rabbit poster? Well, that depends on which child you talk to.

Archer said that children can choose any rabbit topic varying from diseases to breeds to food to nest boxes, as long as it is related to rabbits.

The posters must be 22 inches by 28 inches and are judged on creativity, originality, and neatness just to name a few.

Tyler Cole, 10, Greencastle, told the BannerGraphic this was his first year showing rabbits and participated in the poster contest. The son of Brian and Susan Cole, Greencastle, said that his poster consisted of a photo of his rabbit, his rabbit's birth date, age, and breed.

Cole learned about rabbits from his grandmother, and "the rabbit meetings and dad helped me a lot," he said.

While his rabbit only cooperates some times, Cole had a lot fun working his rabbit. He is hoping to place first in both the poster contest and the rabbit show.

Archer said that many of the children who win champion ribbons in the poster contest do go on to compete at state fair. "All the kids do really well at state, they are very creative," she said.

Fair goers should keep their eyes peeled for these Putnam County youths and their creative rabbit posters.

Winners of the poster contest and showmanship will be announced today during the rabbit show.

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