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Churches challenged to support Second Harvest, Rescue Mission at Canfield Fair

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Many of the animals shown at the Canfield Fair's 4-H program aren't there to look cute, or teach kids about the hard-work of raising livestock. 

For the majority of them, the journey to the Canfield Fair will end in someone's freezer. 

The hogs, beef cattle, lambs, goats, turkeys, and poultry, which are shown by hundreds of kids every year at the Canfield Fair., are all terminal projects, meaning they are sold at auction during the course of the fair, and then sent to the butcher shop. 

This year, one local church is making the call to use the opportunity to support as many good causes at once as possible. 

Jack Acri, Pastor of First Federated Church in North Jackson, is passing on a challenge to churches and organizations to purchase a 4-H project and donate the meat to either the Second Harvest Food Bank of the Mahoning Valley or the Rescue Mission of the Mahoning Valley. 

Acri said it's something their church has been doing for a  few years now. The church’s first hog purchase was 10 years ago and alternates between supporting the Rescue Mission and Second Harvest Food Bank each year

“The first year we bought a hog at the 4-H livestock auction and it was announced that we donated it to the Rescue Mission, the Coliseum burst into spontaneous cheers and applause,” recalls Pastor Acri. “We realized right then that we were on to something that could have a greater impact for good.”

Since then the Junior Fair has offered buyers the opportunity to donate the livestock to the Rescue Mission, Second Harvest or other food banks and the processing and delivery is taken care of with the convenience of writing one check.

“This is our way to help the ‘Move Our Mission’ project this year,” explains church council president Steve Ruggles. “We are challenging all other churches to “Bring Home the Bacon” at the 4-H auction this year and donate food to either the Rescue Mission or Second Harvest Food Bank.”

Acri said the project not only helps the Rescue Mission and the Second Harvest Food Bank- but also goes to support hundreds of Valley kids who put months of work into raising their animals. 

Many of those kids often say they're setting aside the money to help pay for college. 

The auction sales for Jr. Fair 4-H projects is set for Thursday and Friday nights. 

Thursday, September 1 Auction
5:30 p.m. – Goat Milk Fudge (Coliseum #8)
       - Rabbit Meat Pens, Immediately Following 

7:00 p.m. – Jr. Fair Market Lambs (Coliseum #8)
    - Jr. Fair Market Goats, Immediately Following
    - Jr. Fair Market Swine, Immediately Following 

Friday, September 2 Auction
5:30 p.m.  – Market Poultry (Coliseum #8)
7:00 p.m. – Market Beef, Market Feeders (Coliseum #8)

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