Saluting local fairs, honoring farm families

With the start of the Marion Fair this week, the beginning of the very busy fair season is upon us.

The Marion Fair runs through June 28. Soon after, the Mecosta County Agricultural Free Fair opens for a week of activity July 7-12. The Osceola 4-H FFA Fair runs July 28 through Aug. 2.

All these fairs are great family fun. There is a lot to see and do, and plenty of good clean fun for area residents and visitors to our community alike.

We would like to take this opportunity to point out an important and, indeed, vital part of the fair — no matter which one or where it is held.

Local fairs give 4-H kids and their clubs a chance to really shine while displaying their talents in far-ranging areas from photography to swine raising.

Ultimately, the fairs are all about kids — kids working hard to raise animals large and small, and create craft and life skills projects.

The fairs give 4-H kids an opportunity to demonstrate to the community, and to visitors to this area, the incredible knowledge they’ve developed in their chosen field of interest. It is also a chance for these same kids to teach visitors, children and adults alike, that food doesn’t originate in a grocery store warehouse or a food processing plant.

We get the food we eat out of the barns, dairies, and fields of farming families throughout the community, state and nation.

Food on our tables reflects a lot of hard work by farming families all year through.

We hope every visitor to a fairgrounds during the coming fair season will take a few moments between the rides and the midway to gain a new, or renewed appreciation for the hard work our local 4-H’ers put into the work they do and the projects they submit for judging.

We also hope the fairs will better help residents and visitors — all of us — respect the efforts of farm families in keeping us well fed and healthy. They deserve our thanks.

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