Thursday, August 08, 2013

Cat 4-H at the Clark County Fair

Junior Reserve Champion for Cage Decoration
Sorry it's taken so long to get this post up. I had two more days of fair with my oldest, 3 extra kids (two nephews and a niece) here and way too much to do around here!

So 4-H Cats at the Clark County Fair...

I'll start by saying when I left for San Diego, my youngest decided she was not competing at Fair. She had never shown Beauty. She'd used our leader's cat at a Fun Match and it hadn't gone well. She'd only practiced during 4-H meetings twice.

Our leader texted me suggesting she at least decorate a cage and do a cat craft. Rose agreed. Of course, none of this was done let alone started while I was away in San Diego. So I return home from my vacation and Fair preparations begin.

Finn's award winning photo
Most people take weeks, maybe months, to pull everything together. We did it in three and a half days, give or take a few hours.

First up was 4-H Photography. Matted prints were due on Tuesday. The mishaps in getting ready included hubby not ordering reprints of all the pics and our puppy Cato eating the sheet of matting. That meant an early morning run to Michaels the day everything was due. Special thanks to the framing guy who cut the mats to save us time.

The kids pics did well. Rose won four blues. Mackenna won six. Finn won a red and a blue, including a special award.

Next up were the 4-H Cat Projects. Rose drew a picture of a cat to enter in Cat Crafts. She won a red ribbon with that. Then the big project was at had. Cage Decoration. She had a theme idea in mind based on her Build-A-Bear igloo.

A quick trip to Jo-Ann's Fabrics gave her all she needed to create the Kitty Snow Globe cage pictured at the top of the blog. She sewed the fabric to the cage, had her dad help her make a flooring and a wall to hide the litter box. A quick rummaging through her toys found a few accessories for the top. Her skills from Computer Adventures, a class she's taken the last two years, helped her create the title. All this took her most of Wednesday to complete, but for a last minute effort she did well. We had the cage to the fair on-time Thursday afternoon!

Irish Dancers Rose and Beauty
 On Friday (first official day of fair) morning when we arrived, she had both a blue ribbon and a Reserve Champion hanging on her cage for her efforts! Thankfully, she's already picked next year's theme so we can get started early.

As fair was getting closer, Rose decided she still wasn't going to show Beauty, but she wanted to do Cat Costume, where the 4Her and animal dress up. So as soon as the cage was finished, she figured out an easy costume. Irish dancers.

Rose had always dreamed of wearing her big sister's solo dress. Now she was big enough that it fit. Finding Beauty an Irish Dance outfit wasn't as hard as I thought it would be. Given our last minute efforts, sewing wasn't an option so Rose raided her toy box. The American Girl Irish dance dress was too small, but a Build-A-Bear Sleeping Beauty dress fit. Rose added a tulle headband she'd made and white baby socks, cut off with black shoe laces drawn on to look like soft shoes. She won another Blue ribbon!

"Type" Judging
By Saturday, Rose had changed her mind and decided she was going to compete in the Fitting and Showing as well as Type. She was very nervous though.

Beauty had never been shown to a judge. She was a handful for Rose during Fitting and Showing (the judge is looking at the handler not the cat), but the two of them still ended up with a Blue ribbon. Rose was thrilled. We all were. Doing so well was a big confidence booster for her.

That afternoon, Type (the judge is looking at the cat not the handler) went much better. Beauty was more calm. We're not sure if she just decided this was her Fate or if she was more used to the new surroundings, but they received another Blue ribbon.

Cat showing is very different from dog showing. I'm still not sure I get the whole concept since the cat really doesn't do much. No running around a ring or stacking, just sitting/standing/lying on a table, but Rose enjoyed herself and already wants to do it again.

Beauty resting in her igloo
Saturday was also voting day at the Fair. The public could vote for their favorite cat cage. The kids passed out ballots to people touring the cat barn. Rose worked hard to get votes for hers!

Guess what?

She won! Beauty and the Kitty Snow Globe won the Public's Choice for Juniors (Rose's age group!)

On Sunday, the kids also competed in Cat Bowl. As the day was drawing to a close, they announced Clark County's State Fair team. Rose's name was announced. She qualified twelfth out of fifteen. Not bad for a kid who a few days before wasn't even going to compete. So in September we'll be heading to the State Fair in Puyallup, Washington.

Fingers crossed we won't be rushing around at the last minute to get everything finished in time!