For many 4-H and FFA members, exhibiting their projects at the Sonoma County Fair has been a long standing family tradition. These youth exhibitors love having the opportunity to showcase their hard work and educate the public on their respective programs and projects.
Over the past several years, the Sonoma County Fair has offered our youth a unique opportunity to experience some of the “behind the scenes action” in learning what it takes to run a successful fair- The Junior Ambassador Program. The program is open to any 4H or FFA member who has an interest in learning more about the fair industry, and the inter-workings of the Junior Livestock Show.
This year, 10 outstanding individuals were chosen to participate in the program- Mackenzie Herman of Petaluma, Alister Clark of Santa Rosa, Megan Donaldson of Tomales, Lucas Cheda of Petaluma, Olivia Poncia of Petaluma, Emma Stafford of Petaluma, Kassidy Bianchi of Petaluma, Reese Renati of Petaluma, Frances Marshall of Sebastopol and Analise Scholten of Sebastopol. All have been exhibiting at the Sonoma County Fair for a number of years, and have been involved in both livestock and non-livestock projects in their respective 4-H Clubs and FFA Chapters. Each of this years ambassadors are excited to have the opportunity to work closely with the public in order to offer them some insight into what it is they love to do and the agriculture industry.
Paulette Swallow, the Sonoma County Fair Assistant Exhibits Representative, serves as the Junior Fair Ambassador Program Coordinator. This program is, “a great opportunity for youth exhibitors to gain experience and exposure to the fair industry while expanding their horizons and exposing themselves to other projects they may have never participated in before,” said Paulette. The 10 Junior Fair Ambassadors will have some different responsibilities in the livestock area this year, “They will get to help out in the livestock office, clerking shows, at Farmer’s Day and facilitating the 5 different Junior Livestock Auctions”. The program is 100% voluntary and it is the fairs’ hope that with early-on exposure to duties carried out by fair personal, one day, they will come back and work for the fair!