'Big E' Lights Up Today

New England's premier ag exposition runs through Oct. 4

Published on: Sep 18, 2009
New England's largest regional fair opens its gates today at the Eastern States Exposition in West Springfield, Mass. The show's 17-day run will draw more than 6,000 youth competitors and thousands of animals vying for awards.

A number of new offerings are planned. The jackpot obstacle contest and youth judging competition are especially noteworthy, says Betsy Booth, Wolfeboro, N.H., who manages the llama show. "The youth judging contest is the only one in the area and is an outstanding educational opportunity for kids."

In the beef arena, Belted Galloway exhibitors will again face a record number of competitors, reports Donna Woolam, Big E's director of agriculture. Dairy producers will see a strong lineup of dairy shows, as Holstein, Ayrshires and Milking Shorthorn again hold their national regional events.

Much more will be happening outside the livestock arenas. For instance, the Farm-A-Rama will feature "Through the Seasons: The New England Farmers' Year". The turn-of-the-century exhibit will be in the Stroh Building.

Here's a quick look at the main livestock events. All are shows unless otherwise noted. For the full Big E schedule, visit the Web site www.thebige.com. Or call 413-205-5115.

Friday, Sept. 18

  • 9 a.m.  Northeast Fall National Holstein
  • 1 p.m.  Polled Dorset
  • 6 p.m.  Belted Galloway Jr.

Saturday, Sept. 19

  • 8:30 a.m.  Marcus Thompson Jr. Hampshire
  • 9 a.m.  Belted Galloway
  • 2:30 p.m.  National Regional Southdown

Sunday, Sept. 20

  • 9 a.m.  Montadale
  • Noon   Market Lamb
  • 2 p.m.  Regional Shropshire

Monday, Sept. 21

  • 9 a.m.  Oxford
  • 10 a.m.            Horse pulling (3,050 pounds)
  • 1 p.m.  Northeastern National Jr. Milking Shorthorn 
  • 1:30 p.m.         Horse pulling (3,300 pounds)
  • 2 p.m.  Suffolk
  • 6 p.m.  Horse pulling (3,350 pounds and up)

Tuesday, Sept. 22

  • 9 a.m.  Cheviot
    9 a.m.  Northeastern National Milking Shorthorn
    10 a.m.            Ox Pulling (2,800 pounds)
  • 1 p.m.  Pure Horned Dorset
  • 1:30 p.m.  Ox Pulling (3,200 pounds)
  • 4 p.m.  Sheep Supreme Champion
  • 6 p.m.  Ox Pulling (3,500 pounds and up)

Wednesday, Sept. 23

  • 9 a.m.  Jersey
  • 3 p.m.  All Other Breed Beef
  • 5:30 p.m.         Jackpot Steer

Thursday, Sept.24

  • 9 a.m.  Eastern States National Ayrshire 

Friday, Sept. 25

  • 9:30  a.m.  Columbia
  • 12:30 p.m.  Jr. Hereford 
  • 2 p.m.  Corriedale

Saturday, Sept. 26

  • 8:30 a.m.  National Border Leicester
  • 9 a.m.  4-H Beef Type 
  • 12:30 p.m. Hereford
  • 2 p.m.  National Cotswold 

Sunday, Sept. 27

  • 8:30 a.m. Lincoln
    2 p.m.  National Natural Colored Sheep

Monday, Sept. 28

  • 9 a.m.  Merino
  • 12:20 p.m.       Rambouillet
  • 3 p.m.  Romney
  • 6 p.m.  4-H Beef Sale 

Tuesday, Sept. 29

  • 8 a.m.  Llama
    9 a.m.  Northeast Brown Swiss
  • 9 a.m.  Tunis
  • 1 p.m.  AOB Wool/Hair Sheep
  • 1 p.m.  New England Guernsey Classic
  • 2 p.m.  Northeast Brown Swiss
  • 4 p.m.  Sheep Supreme Champion

Wednesday, Sept. 30

  • 8 a.m.  Llama 
  • 9 a.m.  Angus Jr.
  • 6 p.m. New England Angus Sale

Thursday, Oct. 1

  • 8 a.m.  Llama
  • 9 a.m.  Angus

Friday, Oct. 2

  • 9 a.m.  4-H Dairy Goat
  • 2 p.m. Alpaca

Saturday, Oct. 3

  • 8 a.m.  Alpaca
  • 9 a.m.  4-H Dairy, Goat Type
  • 9 a.m.  4-H Sheep, Market Lamb & Breed Classes
  • 1 p.m.  4-H Dairy, Goat Type

Sunday, Oct. 4

  • 8 a.m.  Alpaca
  • 9 a.m.  Dairy Goat
  • 1 p.m.  Open Swine