Note: This story appears in the Wednesday, July 17 newspaper on Page A2.
WELLSTON — A 2019 Oak Hill High School graduate, who aspires to become a veterinarian in the near future, is thankful for the knowledge and experiences she has gained through the 4-H program.
Bailey Ward, 19, along with her hogs “Hope” and “Brittany,” will appear in the 4-H Livestock Arena on Thursday, July 18, for the swine show and showmanship contest.
This is her last year in 4-H, and she feels that 4-H is a wonderful program that any kid can participate in.
“I think the program provides good education and teaches a child values and gives them responsibilities,” stated Ward. “I’ve shown animals with 4-H ever since I was in the third grade.”
Ward added, “Before that, my sister, who’s four years older than me, showed animals, too, so I was always helping her. I was also in Cloverbuds. So, I’ve been involved in 4-H for 14 years altogether.”
Ward belongs to the Medallions 4-H Club and Oak Hill FFA. She’ll soon study animal sciences at the Ohio State University.
The Courier asked what kind of fair food she liked the most, and Ward without hesitating said she like deep-fried Oreos.
Ward said that she has enjoyed all of the friends she has made through 4-H. She said that she took the week off work for the fair and has been enjoying that time off by hanging out with her 4-H friends.
“I also like showing, you just put so much work into it throughout the whole year, and I like when the hard work pays off,” said Ward.
When asked why she chose a hog as her 4-H animal project, Ward explained pigs are the animals she possibly has “the most knowledge in.”
“My family has bred hogs, so I’ve been around them my whole life. Pigs are also my favorite animal,” she said.
Other animals that Ward has taken to the fair in the past are market turkeys and lambs. The first animals she ever brought to the fair were hogs and lambs.
“My greatest honor would have to be winning the showman of showmen contest,” stated Ward. “That contest is not about how much money you spent on the animal or how good your animal is, it’s about how much knowledge you know about all the animal breeds.”
Ward spoke about some other past achievements, which included grand champion market lamb, reserve champion market hog, reserve champion market turkey, as well as multiple top 10 and showmanship honors.
Ward encourages other children to join 4-H. “We don’t have that many people in 4-H right now in Jackson County,” she said. “I just think it would be a really good thing for more kids to get involved.”