CowBelles member shows, helps others during fairWritten by Christy Hemken
As the show began indoors in the ring the Natrona County CowBelles were present to assist in handing out awards to class winners, a responsibility handled mostly by the Natrona County CowBelles Royal Court, which is composed of the younger members of the CowBelles.
Amy Andreen, a senior at Natrona County High School and a member of both 4-H and FFA, was a member of this group.
Of her involvement in the CowBelles, Amy, daughter of Dale and Val Andreen, says, “Natrona County CowBelles President Brandi Forgey was looking for more girls to be on the Royal Court, and we’d seen them around town, at rodeos and handing out awards at fair, and my mom thought we’d be interested, so we got involved.”
She says this is the second year she’s been involved with the CowBelles. “We’ll do a raffle today, and we’ll help with the beef show, promoting beef and handing out awards,” she adds.
Although Amy’s projects at fair this year include two swine, she says anybody who’s interested in spreading the word about beef can be involved in the Royal Court. “You just have to want to promote beef,” she says.
“This is my sixth year in the swine project, which my sister and I both do,” she says, adding her older brother raises and shows steers. Amy’s been in 4-H for seven years, and will begin her fourth with FFA in the fall.
“We travel to different states, shows and sales to find our show hogs,” explains Amy. “When we look for them we want them to be broad-shouldered, big-boned, heavily muscled and proportionate. If you raise them right and do the proper things you’ll be able to produce a good hog.”
She says she and her sister stick to the swine projects because they’ve been doing it for so long and have figured out what works for them. Although the Andreens live in town they’ve kept their livestock at a family friend’s place for the past 10 years. She says she appreciates the new swine barn on the Central Wyoming Fairgrounds, which is bigger, allowing for more kids to participate, and which has better airflow.
This year the Andreens started out with six hogs, intending to show them all. Four of them are at the Central Wyoming Fair, and Amy says they plan to show the lighter hogs at the Wyoming State Fair in mid-August.
“Fair time gets hectic, with the hog show and helping other kids get their animals ready,” says Amy, noting that she helps out some friends who have three species of livestock. “It’s a good time to take off from work and come here and help everyone for the week.”
Throughout the year the Natrona County CowBelles Royal Court welcomes attendees to the CNFR, helps with the Special Olympics and attends meetings throughout the year, among other things.
“Being involved in all these organizations has allowed me to get to know so many different people, and it’s really opened my eyes to see so many opportunities that are out there,” says Amy.
Amy says that, upon high school graduation, she plans to attend the University of Wyoming, majoring in education for sure, and perhaps agricultural education.
The Central Wyoming Fair livestock shows ran from July 7-12.