Kids? Day at the HC Fair had a whole lot of fun, learning

By Gretchen Teske, Mt. Pleasant News


Cooler temperatures and a splattering of clouds proved to be perfect weather for Kids? Day at the Henry County Fair Saturday. Over 100 kids showed up to shoot BB guns with the Boy Scouts, learn about Iowa with Henry County Conservation and about how corn can be used to create ethanol with American Ethanol.

Kelley Tansey, the Cub Master for Pack 27, said this is the first year the Boy Scouts have made it out to the fair. They brought with them an obstacle course, pine-car derby racetrack and BB gun shooting range. The idea to come out for the first item stemmed from wanting to show the county about the different kinds of scouts. ?We got together and wanted to do something to get the Henry County units together,? she said. ?We did some brainstorming and came up with this.?

The scouts brought around five groups and about 20 members altogether. Their goal for the day was to raise awareness for the scouts and show the community the different things the kids learn and do at camp. ?We hope to get some recruitment and just spread the word that we?re here and that there?s lots of different units in Henry County.?

Carrie Nicely, a naturalist with Henry County Conservation, brought in CSI Investigations, where the goal was to teach kids about the hazards of human effects in wildlife. On a tarp, Nicely laid out things kids might find in nature, such as a turtle wrapped in fishing line, a pop bottle and milk weed. Her goal was to get children to see the dangerous effects of trash on wildlife and also recognize the good things that happen in wildlife, such as what different animals eat. She says it?s important to point out and help kids realize that taking care of wildlife takes human effort. When one child pointed out the pop bottle as pollution, she explained that is usually not the first thing kids notice because they are not correlating trash with nature. ?It?s just to be aware that our garbage can harm wildlife,? she said. ?It?s just to bring awareness that people use nature, but we need to clean it up when we?re finished.?

Mike Finarty with American Ethanol drove a trailer, the bio fueled education center, designed to teach kids about the different ways corn can be used. Their goal was to show everyone why corn is used and why ethanol is used. Inside the trailer, they burned ethanol and gas so adults and kids can see the difference. ?The importance of showing it to small kids is those small kids will (become) consumers and driving (one day),? he said. ?We can tie it all together of what they actually see in the fields and how we use it for every day.?