Showing Goats A Family Affair- Serving Beef to the Masses at the Iowa State Fair

DES MOINES, Iowa- Showing livestock at the Iowa State Fair is often a family affair. For Deb Reasoner of Ellston, she’s got plenty of experience being a goat showing Mom, and now a goat showing Grandma.

“My sister still shows, she’s in FFA, my daughter shows,” said Allie Swietlik, Reasoner’s daughter. “Mom shows in the open. what do you have 14 goats here? 15 goats showing this year.”

People looking for a good sit-down beef meal from Prime Rib, to a number of beef dishes, at the Cattlemen’s Beef Quarters. This eatery opens 6 am for breakfast, and will serve as many as 7,000 or 8,000 people a day. They count on 250 volunteers to help serve. Some are from an Urbandale church, working to raise funds for a mission trip.

“I was a cattle feeder when we got this started back in 1985, didn’t quite envision it was going to turn out like this,” said John Mortimer, who runs the operation. He was asked if feeding people is harder than feeding cattle. “Yeah, a little bit, sometimes they talk back to you more than the cattle did.”

Parks an Rec Day featured Big Wheel Races, Bubble Gum Blowing contests, and Pie Eating Contest.

“We’re promoting what's great about your local parks and recreation department,” said Steve Jordison, CEO of the Iowa Park and Recreation Association. “Get outside while the weather, it’s still wonderful, walk or jog...your local agencies can help you out with a bunch of fall programs soccer and flag football, a myriad of other activities.”

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