I spent the first half of this VERY hot Sunday at the Frederick Fairgrounds for the Easter Angora Goat and Mohair Association (EAGMA) goat show. The temperatures weren't too bad first thing in the morning and there was a very nice breeze, but the temps heated up quite quickly. The goats in the barn seemed quite comfortable in the shade of their pens with the nice breeze(enhanced by fans) to keep them cool.
I had a primo seat for watching all the judging - front and center! I had missed the first round of the of the colored goat competition, but there were plenty of categories and plenty of goats yet to come. Luckily, I managed to see the judging where Colleen's goat took 4th! It was awesome!!!!
Pilar and her daughter were helping Colleen show goats as well. It was awesome to watch - I love it when us "city girls" flex our wings!
I would hate to be a judge. There were so many fine animals with absolutely lovely fleeces. The judge (in the white hat) checked the wool on the entire animal - the back, sides, and rear. He checked for both the quality of the wool as well as the density of it. On a few occasions, he'd have to check and recheck to determine the final rankings of the top goats. It was fascinating to watch.
One goat was more of a "lap dog" or cat. She was very content to splay out on her owner's lap and watch the remainder of the show once she'd finished competing!
And my favorite photo - the owner that gently talks to his goat while awaiting the judging. It was just the sweetest thing I'd ever seen. The camera just didn't quite capture the moment, but you get the idea anyway.
I took soooo many "goat photos" - it's hard to pare them down to a reasonable number for this post. Here's an assortment of photos of the goats that were being judged as well as photos of some of the winners...including the Grand Champion and Reserve.
Unfortunately, I didn't get to watch much of the doe competition as I had to leave early due to a family emergency. I'm sure they were all as gorgeous as bucks.
Before I left, I checked out the vendors. There were all under a single pavilion. This festival is a much smaller venue than Maryland Sheep and Wool, but definitely worth the trip! I picked up some lovely roving (in teal) from Avalon Springs Farm and a fabulous skein of brushed mohair from Kid Hollow Farm (also in teal).
Even though the vendor area was shaded by the Pavilion, it was still hot as blazes - especially in the middle where the breeze was somewhat blocked. However, this little bunny didn't seem to mind and even posed for a photo op with the spinning wheel! The bunny's owner kept chilled water and ice packs nearby so the bunny could cool off as needed.
In the Pavilion, I also spotted a couple of my friends busily demonstrating spinning and weaving. More power to them! I don't think I could spin or weave in that heat! It was 100+ degrees by the mid afternoon - thankfully I was gone by then!
This little guy was "out for a stroll" - heading over to watch the shearing.
On my way out, I paused to checkout the shearing tent. What a hot day for shearing! I'll bet the goat was THRILLED to have all that excess wool removed!