2016 Oklahoma Youth Expo Coming Soon to Oklahoma CityTue, 19 Jan 2016 03:56:14 CST
The 2016 edition of the Oklahoma Youth Expo is less than 60 days away. OYE will be held March ninth through the eighteenth at State Fair Park in Oklahoma City. Exhibitors are getting their animals ready by participating in jackpot livestock shows across the state. OYE Executive Director Tyler Norvell said it’s fun to hear how excited people are for this year’s show.
“I think we’re in a great spot,” Norvell said. “I think it will be our second best year ever in terms of the premium sale and the scholarships given out and it’s still very positive. People still want to be involved with the program, even though resources are tight and they let you know we’re doing what people want us to be doing.”
The annual livestock youth show continues to grow to impressive levels. While there are fewer students that have parents that make their living from production agriculture, Norvell said the number of entries continues to grow each year. He said this is one of the few programs left in 4-H and FFA that provides youth with a hands on learning experience in production agriculture. He said we still need to be teaching youth how to produce animals for a safe product to feed consumers around the world.
Among the new activities at this year's OYE will be a Hereford Pig Show. Hereford is an emerging breed that is being shown more in Oklahoma. Norvell said the Hereford gilt show could be larger than Hampshire gilt show this year. Another change is that the doe goat show will be moving to the first weekend of OYE. This year's Barrow show will also be terminal. That change came from a recommendation from ag teachers, the Oklahoma Pork Council, the State Veterinarian and the Oklahoma Department of Agriculture, Food and Forestry.
“I think it will be a good lesson for those students to learn about disease control and why we need to do the best bio-security measures we can as producers to keep the food supply safe,” Norvell said.
Leadership development remains a key cornerstone of the OYE program. OYE awards scholarships to seniors based on their leadership experience. That's an important attribute in demand by today’s employers. Norvell said FFA and 4-H do a great job of building leadership in today’s youth.
As exhibitors and visitors come out to this year’s show, they will find logistics to be more challenging with the construction taking place on the State Fair Grounds. Construction continues on the new Expo Building across from State Fair Arena. Norvell said they will be excited to see construction completed and how this will allow OYE to grow and make OYE even bigger and better.
Radio Oklahoma Network Farm Director Ron Hays talked with Norvell about the 2016 OYE. Click or tap on the LISTENBAR below to listen to the full interview.
The 101st year of OYE will be held March 9 - 18 at the State Fair Park in Oklahoma City. The Grand Champion Drive will be held on March 17th at State Fair Arena. The Sale of Champions will be held on March 18th at 4pm in State Fair Arena. Livestock entries are due by February 19, 2016. Click or tap here for more information.
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