Extension agent Patrick Mangan and a committee of 4H leaders and volunteers have been working out the logistics of how to do the 4H/FFA Market Sale since the Ravalli County Fair was cancelled. According to Mangan, the committee has decided to hold a virtual sale for those members selling beef, dairy, swine, sheep, and goats.
The sale is set to run from September 1 through September 5, 2020. Mangun said they are working with an auction company that has lots of experience. Buyers will sign up through a portal and will be able to view the animals and their owners. There is a convenient ‘bid’ button for each animal so all a buyer will have to do is hit the key to bid and then keep checking back to raise the bid if necessary. The members will be able to keep track of the bidding on their animals also by using this portal.
The official weigh-in for the sale is the weekend of August 22 and 23. In order to comply with social distancing directives, only a few animals at a time will be weighed, giving the 4H/FFA members and volunteers plenty of room. After they weigh in, members will have their photos taken with their animals. These photos will go on the sale website along with a brief write up about the member and the animal to personalize their projects. The members also have the option of using their own photos on the site. According to Ravalli County 4H Facebook page, members wishing to sell in the virtual sale should notify their 4H leaders by this Friday, August 7th.
For those who want to specifically support one member but not buy an animal, there are ‘add-ons’. Mangan said they are still working on how to do this with the virtual platform and will have that information soon.
Last week we mistakenly wrote that the 4H program was not having livestock shows due to mandates from the state. This is incorrect. Ravalli County Extension Agent Patrick Mangun told the Star that it was actually a group of county 4H leaders and volunteers who decided that it was not safe to hold the livestock shows.