It has been an emotional spring and early summer for everyone. But for the kids of the Erie County 4H program, the COVID pandemic has meant the cancellation of the payoff to their hard work; the county fair.

Not only do the kids work hard to get their animals ready for the shows. They also look forward to the annual auction in which they make money for savings or for next year's projects. Many of the local agriculture supporters and staff have vowed to not let them lose out this year.

I spoke with Tammy Kron from the Erie County Cornell Cooperative Extension via email about the plans for this year's auction and sale.

CM: What can we expect for the revised auction?

TK: "..we will be offering an online auction for our 4-H and FFA members to sell their 2020 Market Animal projects.  We will be posting all the details and information pertaining to the sale to our Cornell Cooperative Extension of Erie County website http://erie.cce.cornell.edu/."

CM: What animals will be available this year?

TK: Auction offerings for 2020 will be steers, lambs, hogs, meat goats, rabbits, turkeys and chickens.

CM: I understand you have had to figure out new dates as well?

TK: We will be using Bontrager’s Auction Service.  The sale will be open from Friday, August 7 to Friday, August 14 when it will be a soft close beginning at 5:00 p.m.  All bidders are encouraged to register at Bontrager’s Auction site early so they are prepared when bidding opens.

CM: Most years you sell per pound. However, to make it fair, that had to change this year as well?

TK: This year the 4-H and FFA programs will be offering top quality animals to fill your freezer.  Based on the format of an online auction, all animals will be sold by the head instead of by the pound.  Animals will be transported to the processor by the 4-H members.

CM: Anything else we should know about the sale this summer?

TK: We will also be offering our annual pie and cookie fundraiser.  The proceeds support the entire 4-H program allowing opportunities for trips, events, educational resources for our members.

It would be a great way to make sure your freezer is full this winter and help out the kids who put so much work in each year. I have watched many of these kids grow up and look forward to helping them whenever I can. Please support them and support the future of agriculture in Erie County!