WAVERLY – If you and your child are interesting in learning about pork production and showing a pig at this year’s Lancaster County Super Fair, there is a 4-H club you might be interested in
The Pick-A-Pig 4-H club is accepting new members and is open to all city and rural youth ages 8–18. Their first meeting will be Sunday, March 18
The club is being led by Harry and Lois Muhlbach of rural Waverly.
“This is the ninth year for the club,” he said adding that when they started there were only eight or nine members.
“Now we have up to 45 members,” he said.
Muhlbach said that they buy the pigs from Beatrice Southeast Community College but they do breed some of their own.
“The youth has to guarantee us that they will show up and care for it before they get their pig,” he said.
Although meetings begin in March, he said come April is when the real work begins.
“It’s all about learning to be responsible,” he said. Some of the members show up to Muhlbach’s pig farm once a week while some come twice a month.
“Pigs are on self-feeders, but members still have to take a responsibility.”
Muhlbach said that when summer begins to roll, the work begins on how to handle a pig. By fair time, that pig show weighs 280 pounds.
“And that’s a lot for a person to learn how to show at a fair,” he said. “But they have a ball doing it. In fact, we have a number of repeat members who just enjoy showing at the fair.”
He credits parents for stepping up to help.
“I think they enjoy it just as much as their child does,” he said. “They really like getting out on the farm as they don’t have a place to do in town.”
He said that adults have been heard to say that they remember when their grandpa had pigs.
“They are three or four generations from the farm and it is a good way to remember grandpa,” he said.
But it’s not all about just how to show a pig.
“We teach them the cuts of meat as well,” he said.
He said that they don’t care where the member comes from and that in past years they have seen more girls join than boys.
“And girls aren’t scared to get dirty.”
Muhlbach gave praise to the members in the club.
“They work many hours with their pig and last year it paid off. All of the girl members showed their pigs at the county fair and several went on to show at Ak-Sar-Ben.”
Some members have even taken their pigs to school for a petting zoo or some program.
“They really get into it,” he said. “And that is all we ask. That they become responsible for their pig.”
If you are interested in joining the club, contact Muhlbach at 402-430-7304 by March 14.