South Plains Fair Children’s Barnyard benefiting Lubbock County 4-H

Children’s Barnyard open daily from 10 a.m. to 9 p.m. through Saturday
Published: Sep. 27, 2023 at 6:30 PM CDT
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LUBBOCK, Texas (KCBD) - A longstanding tradition at the South Plains Fair is helping kids in our area learn skills that will carry them to the future.

The Children’s Barnyard gives Lubbock County 4-H members a chance to have hands-on experiences working with animals.

For many years now you’ve been able to see chickens, sheep, cows, alpacas and many more farm animals at the fair thanks to the Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Lubbock County 4-H clubs.

A county extension agent for 4-H in youth development, Ronda Alexander, said it gives kids at the fair and the members a chance to interact with animals they don’t usually see.

“It also provides an opportunity for our 4Hers to work at the barnyard and to get to be around animals as well, because not all of our 4Hers have animals,” Alexander said.

The 4-H members are responsible for keeping the animals safe, fed, and making sure they have enough water. Alexander said that teaches them responsibility that they’ll be able to take into the rest of their lives.

“They may have specific skills that they learn from being in a project, but they learn those life skills like decision making, and responsibility, just those general good skills,” Alexander said.

Not only does it benefit current members, Alexander said it can also be a big recruitment possibility for 4-H clubs.

“That’s also part of the purpose of the 4Hers being here every day is, or the parent leaders or the club manager, so if people have questions they can visit and ask questions and learn about getting involved,” Alexander said.

Those members can also share what else the organization does like food nutrition, shooting sports and robotics.

“To learn a little bit more about 4H, and you know 4H isn’t about just the animals,” Alexander said.

Alexander adds this experience, like many in 4-H, gives kids a learning environment outside of the classroom.

The Children’s Barnyard is open daily from 10 a.m. to 9 p.m. through Saturday.