Young Russian farmers explore their first county fair in Iowa
SPENCER, Iowa (KTIV) -
It's known as "The World's Greatest County Fair," and it takes a lot to live up to that name - like drawing people from around the globe.
16 young farmers from across Russia experienced their first fair in Clay County, Iowa.
"It's really interesting how people celebrate agriculture," Nina Sokolyuk from St. Petersburg, Russia said.
Sokolyuk was selected through the United States Embassy and a private farmer's organization to learn more about our country's farming culture.
"The reason that they're here is that they're looking at new technology that we have in the United States, visiting private farms, looking at how our agriculture is organized," World Link President Curtis Stutzman said.
Stutzman organizes exchange programs for the state department and U.S. Department of Agriculture. He said the fair is a great place for the students to learn about youth activities.
"They're seeing the students out there with their projects, showing sheep, showing dogs, showing horses, and they're asking about the competition," Stutzman said.
The students said they were very impressed with the way they saw the students take care of the animals. They don't see this all the time in Russia.
And some Americans were excited to show them.
"I thought it was pretty neat because they don't know our culture around sheep. I think they will be able to take this back to Russia because we treat our animals nicely and take care of them," Shelby Meyer, of Alta, IA, said.
The animals weren't the only aspect of the fair with which the students were impressed.
"I saw new combines and tractors and amazing new technology," Sokolyuk said.
Stutzman hopes the visitors from abroad share all they learn about farming from the fair with others in rural Russia when they return home.
The students will spend more time at the fair on Thursday and again Saturday checking out the 4-H and FFA Livestock judging competition.