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Animal Learning Center Educates People During Iowa State Fair

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DES MOINES, Iowa – One of the most popular places to visit at the Iowa State Fair is inside the Paul R. Knapp Animal Learning Center. It is where people can learn about a variety of animals and watch them be born.

According to ALC Veterinarian Dr. Gene Hoy, more than 100 animals have been born during the Iowa State Fair.

Iowa State Sophomore Michael DeDecker has been volunteering at the State Fair for years and said around 100 piglets have been born so far this year.

"Our litters are going to range in size from 10 to 12 piglets, all the way up to 16," DeDecker said.

DeDecker said the FFA members can sign up to take home a litter of pigs after the State Fair.

"The point of that is to help our members start their own project and maybe something like a show pig auction," DeDecker said.

Many volunteers in the center are high school and college students. Emma Hay is a student at Southeast Polk High School that one day wants to become a veterinarian.

"We help inform the public who may not know about animals and livestock," Hay said.

Other animals people can see include baby goats, ducks, calf and more.

The center is open from 9:00 a.m. to 9:00 p.m. every day of the fair.

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