It's time to get ready for the fair


With the 4-H programs in full swing throughout Nebraska and fairs quickly approaching, here is fun poem for any 4-H family trying to finish projects the night before entry day. 

 I am sure this can bring back many memories of the chaos and family bonding time.  Enjoy and be sure to check out your local county fairs, especially the 4-Hers’ exhibits!  

For more information about Nebraska 4-H, please contact the University of Nebraska-Lincoln Extension Office in your local county or visit the website at 4-H learning experiences are open to all youth. Make Nebraska 4-H your first college experience with UNL. #4-H Grows Here.

 ‘Twas the Night before Fair


 ‘Twas the night before Fair, and all through the house,

Not a person was sleeping-not even the mouse.

The unfinished clothes were hung with care,

 In hopes to be finished in time for the fair.

The children were hustling, making mother see red,

While visions of blue ribbons danced in their heads.

As Judy sewed kerchief and Sue knitted cap,

Mom and Dad wished for a long winter’s nap.

When out on the lawn, there arose such a clatter,

Those darn steers were out again!  That was the matter.

Away to the window flew Mom like a flash,

Pulled open the drapes and threw up the sash.

The moon on the breast of the lawn freshly mowed,

Gave a lust of mid-day to creatures below.

Bill ran for the halter, Dad put on his shoes,

The girl’s smelled bread burning-there go the blues!

Around 10, its hard to be lively and quick,

But they knew at the moment, they couldn’t be licked.

More rapid than eagles, the steers, running, came,

 As Dad whistled, shouted and called them by name.

“Come Dasher, come Dancer, come Prancer and Vixen,

Here Comet, here Cupid, here Donner and Blitzen.”

(They were named after the reindeer.)

To the corn on the porch, they charged the wall,

And grabbed the broom, screaming, “Now get away All!”

Out of the barn, the steers quickly flew,

Followed by Dad, Mom and her broom, too.

Meanwhile, the girls filled out fair tags, too fast,     

Forgetting the first names always go last,

As they started again to turn names around,

In came the rest of the folks with a bound.

Bill was covered with hay from his head to his boot,

 So Mom quickly scolded and told him to “Scoot!”

Washing her hands, she eyed clothes on the door,

and wondered if others followed this pre-fair score.

“I’ll finish the tags, you finish the sewing,

Dad’ll help John wash the sheep, where is this night going?”

The bread a bit brown, but preserved looked quite merry

Sue iced coffeecake, topping it with a cherry.

Mom finished the tags and proceeded to wrap,

The foods in plastic which ran out with snap!

Now blouses have buttons, skirts hemmed at last,

The long dress looks better with seams pressed flat.

By two in the morning, the sheep clean at last,

John sat in the kitchen and took a short rest.

Bill said his tool box paint with still wet,

 But Mom said, “At this hour-too late to fret.”

“Go take a shower” and she tweaked his nose,

With yawns and a stretch, the children arose.

Mom cleaned the kitchen while Dad sipped iced tea.

Glanced at his watch, and said, “You’ll agree

they really did it-they’ve got some time to spare.”

Said kids, “4-H is really a family affair!”

 With a wink of his eye and a nod of his head, he said,

“Let’s go to bed Mother, we’ve got a big day ahead.”

The themes of this story, in case you can’t guess,

 Is “A 4-H family, together works best.”

~Author Unknown