Reyna Z. De Leon giggles after petting some goats at the Malheur County Fair. (The Enterprise/Yadira Lopez)
ONTARIO — The 110th Malheur County Fair delivered fair games, food and livestock, per usual. While attendance was down from previous years, fairgrounds manager Lynelle Christiani estimated that auction sales hit a record high.
Despite missing carnival rides and behind the scenes plumbing issues, fairgoers found joy wandering around the grounds and showing animals. See anyone you know?
This steer was just one of about a hundred back in January. But then Wyatt Marchek chose him and he became “Chunk.” Marchek, 14, was the only FFA member from Harper High School to show at the Malheur County Fair this year. He can rattle off info on cattle like a pro. It only took him about a minute to pick out Chunk earlier this year. The Angus steer comes from a long line of fair animals including three brothers before him: Big Chunk, Little Chunk and King Chunk. Marchek’s running out of names. What’s next, he says, Chunk Norris? (The Enterprise/Yadira Lopez)
A goat poses with Mille and Ray Harris inside the barns at the fairgrounds.(The Enterprise/Yadira Lopez)
A young fairgoer gets a helping hand tossing a newspaper through the door at the Enterprise booth set up at the 110th Malheur County Fair. (The Enterprise/Isabella Garcia)
The livestock exhibitions are a big draw each year at the Malheur County Fair, which had its annual run at the fairgrounds in Ontario last week. Above: Blake Trees has sold animals at the fair three times, but his entry this year – Phoebe – is special. “She’s very friendly,” said Trees, a first-time FFA member at Ontario High School. As if on cue, two little girls ask if they can pet her. They giggle. Phoebe doesn’t even stir. Phoebe is a market ewe, and Trees admits he’ll be sad to see her go. She came in at 116 pounds, barely making the minimum cutoff of 110. “I almost hoped she wouldn’t make it,” said Trees. (The Enterprise/Yadira Lopez)
Shawnee Ortega feeds her goats. She has five – and three favorites: Button, Ellie and Trap Queen. (The Enterprise/Yadira Lopez)
Makhai hugs his grandfather Guillermo after sharing French fries at the Malheur County Fair. (The Enterprise/Isabella Garcia)
Aubry Hillman, Queen of the EhCapa Bareback Riders, rides without a tack rein – a strap around the horse’s neck – using her feet, legs and voice to guide the horse. (The Enterprise/Isabella Garcia)
Did someone say fair food? There was plenty of it at the fairgrounds last week, from corn dogs to scones to ice cream and more. This young fairgoer gets fueled up with a corn dog. (The Enterprise/Joe Siess)
Modesto and Charity Vega, father and daughter, run the Fiesta Guadalajara food stand at the Malheur County Fair. (The Enterprise/Isabella Garcia)
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