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Lacey and Lola: Goats galore at Beltrami County Fair

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Lacey Thomas leads her goat Lola in the 4-H Goat Show on Thursday at the Beltrami County Fair. (Jillian Gandsey | Bemidji Pioneer)2 / 4
Lacey Thomas' goat Lola waits to be judged in the 4-H Goat Show on Thursday at the Beltrami County Fair. (Jillian Gandsey | Bemidji Pioneer)3 / 4
4-H’ers wait to enter the arena during the 4-H Goat Show on Thursday at the Beltrami County Fair. (Jillian Gandsey | Bemidji Pioneer)4 / 4

BEMIDJI -- Long before the carnival rides roared alive Thursday, the livestock barns were filled with bleats, clucks, baas and moos at the Beltrami County Fair.

First up was the 4-H Goat Show. Lacey Thomas was victorious after showing her goat Lola for the first time in the Junior Dairy Doe category. The satisfied 12-year-old has come a long way in the past year to make it this far.

“She always saved her money for a horse,” said Jody Thomas, her mother. “Then last fall a horse bucked her off and broke both her arms.”

So Lacey chose goats. Now she has three of them: Lola, Lila and Bandit. They’re spotted goats, and she spends about two hours per day with them.

“I’m looking forward to next year, because I want to keep with the goat project,” Lacey said. “Because it’s very simple and my goats actually weren’t very halter trained.”

The judge said he picked Lacey’s goat because he liked its characteristics as far as a dairy type.

Lacey said it was exciting to see how well her goats competed after all the time she’s put in with them.

“It’s also been very good therapy for her arms,” Jody added.

There were almost 20 categories Thursday that had 4-H’ers showing different goats while the horse arena hosted the Tiny Tots Horse Show.

“This is their showcase of the year,” said Ann Marie Ward, 4-H Program Coordinator for Beltrami County. “It’s never easier to get your kid out of bed than on a Fair Day.”

Friday morning will feature the 4-H Poultry Show and the 4-H Horse Show, both at 9 a.m.

The Beltrami County Fair runs through Sunday at the Fairgrounds, located north of Bemidji off of U.S. Highway 71.

Entry to the fair costs $5 per vehicle per day. Wristbands are available for the Midway.

The annual Fair Guide details all the schedules and details for the annual get-together, but a selection of events are listed below. Please note that live music and entertainment is available throughout the day on the Marilyn Shutter Country Stage.

Friday
  • 9 a.m. 4-H Poultry Show (Small Animal Arena)
  • 9 a.m. 4-H Horse Show, Performance (Horse Arena)
  • 1-3 p.m. DNR Youth Events (Heritage Square)
  • 1 p.m. 4-H Beef Show (Large Animal Arena)
  • 3 p.m. 4-H Llama/Alpaca Show (Horse Arena)
  • 3 p.m. Carnival opens (Midway, additional cost)
  • 3 p.m. Northwind Martial Arts (Heritage Square)
  • 5 p.m. Draft Horse-Halter Classes
  • 6 p.m. Northwind Martial Arts (Heritage Square)
  • 6 p.m. Fashion Revue(Stage)
  • 7-8 p.m. Bemidji Total Martial Arts (Heritage Square)
  • 7 p.m. Gold Mine Ranch Rodeo (Grandstand, additional cost)
  • 7 p.m. Classic Country Trivia Challenge (Stage)
  • 8 p.m. Music Jam (Stage)
Saturday
  • 8 a.m. 4-H Rabbit Show (Small Animal Arena)
  • 9 a.m. Draft Horse-Harness Classes
  • 9:30 a.m. 4-H Dairy Show (Large Animal Arena)
  • 10 a.m. to noon Gym Bin (Heritage Square)
  • 11 a.m. 4-H Sheep Show (Small Animal Arena)
  • Noon Carnival opens (Midway, additional cost)
  • Noon to 5 p.m. Armband at Carnival (Midway, additional cost)
  • Noon to 5 p.m. Lions Club, Bee Demo (Heritage Square)
  • 2 p.m. Paws All About It—Dog Arena
  • 4:30 p.m.4-H Market Livestock Auction of Champions (Large Animal Arena)
  • 6:30 p.m. Dress A Goat (Small Animal Arena)
  • 6:30 p.m. Pretty Poultry Parade (Small Animal Arena)
  • 7 p.m. Gold Mine Ranch Rodeo (Grandstand, additional cost)
  • 8 p.m. Jam Session (Stage)
Sunday
  • 8 a.m. Open Horse Show (Horse Arena)
  • 10 a.m. 4-H and Open Dog Agility Show, preceded by Dog Obedience Demo
  • 10 a.m. Paint The Pig Contest
  • 11 a.m. 4-H Award Show (Stage)
  • 11:30 a.m. Barnyard Obstacle Course (Large Animal Arena)
  • Noon to 5 p.m. Lions Club (Heritage Square)
  • Noon to 5 p.m. Armband prices at Carnival (Midway, additional cost)
  • 1 p.m. Off Road Obstacle Challenge (Grandstand, additional cost)
  • 1 p.m. 4-H Premier Showmanship and Herdsmanship Awards (Large Arena)
  • 3 p.m. Chicken Races (Small Animal Arena)
  • 3 p.m. Sheep Sock Races (Small Animal Arena)
  • 5 p.m. Exhibit release time
Jillian Gandsey

Jillian Gandsey is the Multimedia Editor at the Bemidji Pioneer. She is an Iron Range native and a 2013 graduate of Bemidji State University. Follow Jillian on Twitter and Instagram @jilliangandsey. Contact her at 218-333-9786, 218-996-1216 or at jgandsey@bemidjipioneer.com. 

(218) 333-9786
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