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San Patricio-Aransas County A&H Show sees record turnout for Special Show

Event organizers said almost 500 kids participated this year.

SINTON, Texas — Thursday was a big day for hundreds of kids at the San Patricio County Fairgrounds.

They took part in the annual Special Show in the San Patricio and Aransas County A&H Show. It saw kids from around the area show goats and lambs. They ranged in age from elementary school to high school age.

Almost 500 kids participated -- a record number for this year's show.

"They're going to have their opportunity to handle an animal, to show it," said  San Patricio County 4H ambassador Lisa Baylor. "They have a judge, they're being judged and they're getting the full experience and that's what we wanted."

Baylor has helped organize the Special Show for several years. She said the kids get the full livestock show experience -- with added safety measures. The goats and lambs are small enough for the kids to handle and the animals are familiar with the show ring.

"It is such a rewarding experience for the kids," Baylor said. "They make friends, they recognize exhibitors that have come in years past and they look forward to seeing them."

Baylor said the kids get an award after their animal is judged. Jayven Cantu and Marisol Rios were both excited to be around their animals. Cantu even named his goat "Tornado" and was happy to show off his hardware. 

"It feels great!" Cantu said.

"You get to see animals, you get to walk sheep and goats," Rios said. "I like it, it's fun."

Kids showed their animals with the help of a volunteer. One of them was this year's queen, Taryn O'Brien, a junior at Sinton High School.

O'Brien said she will be active in all shows this week, representing San Patricio County as the queen. She recalled the first time she helped with the Special Show.

"I had a little girl in my first year doing it and every year she comes back and calling me her best friend," O'Brien said. "So, I think it's definitely a great day for them and a great day for me as well."

The A&H Show continues Thursday with homemaking, market hog judging and market lamb judging. The grand and reserve champions will be selected for hogs and lambs after the judging.

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