Farm City Breakfast kicks-off 2012 Niagara County Fair
This year’s fair is in honor of 75 years of 4-H history. As part of that, the speaker for the breakfast was local historian John K. Hall. Hall is a member of the Hall Apple Farm family and is a long-time 4-H leader and member of the Niagara County 4-H sponsors committee. This year he was the chairman of the fair committee, organizing the five-day event.
He is a Lockport High School graduate, and attended Cornell University, where he studied Agriculture. In June 1949, John married Arvilla K. Walker, and they have two sons John and Robert and one daughter Debbie.
During the breakfast Hall gave the history of the 4-H program and its time in Niagara County. 4-H officially began in the county in 1937, though Hall believes it was around many years before that. He said over the years 4-H has helped young people and their families become “forces” in their community, creating leaders.
Hall also spoke about how different life was then to now. In 1937, Disney first released “Snow White,” Toyota was founded and the Golden Gate Bridge was built. He said the average weekly salary was $35 and gas was 10 cents a gallon.
Others also expressed their support of 4-H and this year’s fair. County Clerk Wayne Jagow was excited to wear his 4-H suspenders to the breakfast. He said the last time he got to wear them was 25 years ago at the 50th anniversary celebration.
“In Niagara County we grow great things,” he said. “One of those things we grow is our youngsters.”
Legislature Chairman William Ross expressed his support of Cornell Cooperative Extension.
“We do support the Cooperative Extension,” said Ross. “They are so important to this county. They provide educational program to any resident in this great county of ours. Even more important is their work in the 4-H. This youth group is the future.”
After the breakfast, many gathered for the flag raising ceremony, conducted by 4-H Royalty Brian Alt and Kassy Neadow and 2012 Symbolic 4-Hers Miranda VanBuren and Eli Pries.
The ceremony was followed by a dedication of a bench to Norm Sinclair.
Sinclair, born in 1924, passed away in 2011. He was a long time supporter of 4-H and the fair. The bench — which sits in the Memorial Garden outside of the training center — reads, “Spirit of Sinclair. To inspire hope and create opportunities for a better life for all.”
“He truly was a gentlemen and a mentor to many,” said Nate Herendeen, former agriculture educator who worked with Sinclair on the 4-H sponsor committee.
The fair will continue through Sunday. For more information visit www.cceniagaracounty.org.