‘It’s all kinds of emotions’: Aged-out youth exhibit at Dane County Fair

The 2020 Rona Club gave aged-out youth exhibitors a chance to participate this year.
Published: Jul. 16, 2021 at 4:40 PM CDT|Updated: Jul. 16, 2021 at 6:47 PM CDT
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MADISON, Wis. (WMTV) - At the Dane County Fair, some youth exhibitors are older than most.

Megan Breuch aged out last year and missed her chance to show cattle.

“It was shocking for sure to have this one more chance to come back and show,” she said.

Breuch says the day has been filled with looking back on her county fair career.

“It brings back so many memories of the good and the bad,” said Breuch. “It’s all kinds of emotions.”

After the fair was canceled last year, the Dane County Board of Directors started the 2020 Rona Club giving aged-out 4-H youth exhibitors a chance to participate in the 2021 Dane County Fair.

“We decided let’s give these youth that should have aged out an opportunity to come and exhibit their projects,” said Rachel Gierhart, an advisor on the Rona Club. “To not be able to have that chapter closed at the fair, we just thought it would be devastating for them.”

Nice to see 4-H members, who missed out on the Dane County Fair last year, get their chance in the ring! 🐄 Story tonight at 6 on NBC15.

Posted by Gabriella Rusk NBC15 on Friday, July 16, 2021

Adam Rademacher says he’s glad he got to show market lambs one last time.

“I would do it every year if I could,” Rademacher joked. “It’s a lot of fun watching your animal grow and working with it.”

Both Breuch and Rademacher, like many of their 4-H counterparts, have already started a career in the agriculture industry.

“Doing something in the agricultural realm and the dairy industry is something that I’m definitely looking forward to doing,” said Breuch, who is studying dairy science and agribusiness at UW-Platteville.

Rademacher has started working full-time at his family’s farm in Cottage Grove and is also completing courses through UW-Madison.

“I love farming. I love everything about it,” said Rademacher. “I wish more people had the opportunity to do it.”

Organizers say young adults like these are paving the way for the next generation of farmers.

“It’s nice to see that passion is going into the next generation and it’s going to be hitting our workforce and hitting our farmers again,” said Gierhart.

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