Forty-eight young Iowans are going to ‘Find their fun’ at this year’s Iowa State Fair as they participate in the 2022 Bacon Buddies® pig show that will be held Saturday, Aug. 13, in the Swine Barn.
The Bacon Buddies show, being held for its third year, is sponsored by the Iowa Pork Producers Association (IPPA), and is done with the cooperation of Special Olympics Iowa (SOIA).
“More than 30 years ago, the pork industry adopted We Care principles. One of those principles focuses on our communities and the ways we can play an active role in helping build stronger communities,” says Kevin Rasmussen, IPPA President. “Bacon Buddies does just that by bringing together Iowans with intellectual and/or developmental disabilities with 4-H and FFA youth who want to share the exciting experience of showing pigs at the Iowa State Fair,” notes the Goldfield, Iowa pig farmer.
“This is a great opportunity for our Special Olympics athletes,” says John Kliegl, the president and CEO of Special Olympics Iowa. “They want to do what their peers are doing, and it’s great to work with the 4-H and FFA youth who see them as their equals.”
“What is equally exciting, is the number of county fairs around Iowa that have started to hold these shows on the local level, creating those local connections between youth,” says Kliegl.
The Bacon Buddies show begins at 6:30 p.m. on Saturday, Aug. 13, in the east show ring of the Swine Barn on the Iowa State Fairgrounds. Sixteen SOIA Buddies will show their pigs in groups of four, giving them an opportunity to interact with the judge and their animals. The FFA and 4-H mentors will be on hand to provide helpful suggestions as the Buddies walk their pigs around the ring.