COMANCHE COUNTY, Okla. (TNN) - Comanche County Livestock show contestants say the show must go on despite COVID-19 and PEDv, a highly contagious virus that recently reemerged in some pigs across Oklahoma.
Event organizer, Kara Goodknight, says that incorporating safety and sanitation into this year’s event was a must. She says for months prior to the show event planners orchestrated just how they would minimize the risk of exposure of COVID-19 to humans and of PEDv to show pigs.
Hundreds of children from across Comanache County held their breath waiting to hear if the Spring Livestock Show would go on after COVID-19 left them unsure of everything and after farmers in the county learned that hogs were coming down with a highly contagious virus of their own.
Prospective participants didn’t have to wait long for event organizers to announce that the show would indeed go on, says show manager, Kara Goodknight. This year though, she says, things look a little different.
“Any swine project that has come on grounds, they have had a vet check within 72 hours of arriving here. A vet has checked and said these animals are healthy enough to come to the show. And then on grounds after they’ve gotten here we have protocols. If you see people out in the arena sanitizing that’s a bleach solution that kills the virus. And so we are just doing our best to make sure that everything is safe for the animals and the exhibitors here,” Goodknight said.
Participants wear masks when displaying their livestock and social distancing is encouraged she says.
Tuesday participants showed hogs, on Wednesday they’ll show sheep and on Thursday they’ll show dairy and beef cattle, all of which is in preparation for Friday nights Premium Sale.
“At the premium sale we invite all the community members to come out and sponsor these kids so you can actually buy a kid and your money is a donation that will allow our livestock members to either purchase feed, a lot of them will use this money to go to college, some of them will buy other animals. But it’s just a really good way to keep this project going,” Goodknight said.
She says the Premium Sale will begin on Friday at 4 p.m. and will be held at the Great Plains Coliseum, where shows are currently taking place.
Goodknight says participants typically earn sponsorship money ranging from $500 to $7000 dollars and that anyone unable to make it to the event can donate to participants by calling a board member of the Comanche County Saddle and Sirloin Club.
The club is this year’s official livestock show sponsor.
To learn more about the livestock show or to contact the shows sponsors visit Comanche County Saddle and Sirloin Club’s website.