New Farm Animal Barn opens at Sandwich Fair

Posted: August 14, 2019

Check out the Big Red Barn – soon to be filled with animals at the Sandwich Fair, Sept. 4 – 8.

Stop by and see the newest building at the Sandwich Fairgrounds. The Big Red Barn is the new home for the farm animal petting zoo.

The newly constructed red bar is a nice addition to the livestock area of the Sandwich Fair. It will be used by the FFA for the farm animal petting zoo.

Located in the heart of the livestock area at the fairgrounds, the red metal pole barn replaces the old wooden FFA gold and blue painted building that was there for more than 50 years.

Sandwich Fair General Livestock Superintendent Ken Tyrrell is pleased to have a new structure for the popular attraction of seeing a variety of small farm animals. “We’re very proud of our new building. It’s a valuable contribution to the fairgrounds,” said Tyrrell.

The red barn will be filled with an assortment of animals such as calves, pigs, sheep, goats, chickens, rabbits, and ducks provided by local FFA chapters. It has been a tradition for FFA members to bring some of their smaller animals to the fair for people to pet and enjoy.

The DeKalb County Farm Bureau Foundation for Agriculture provided funding for the aluminum gates in the Farm Animal Barn. Mark Tuttle, Foundation President, justified the level of support based on agricultural education. “The Farm Animal Barn provides an opportunity to teach others about farm animals which help sustain us.”

Also located in the Farm Animal Barn will be Maggie the Dairy Cow. Granted, she’s a fiberglass cow, but it’s a chance for all ages to learn how to milk a cow by hand, like in the old days. Maggie is provided by Farm Bureau, First Midwest Bank and local dairy farmers in cooperation with FFA chapters and the Sandwich Fair.

County fair ag traditions

The Sandwich Fair, one of the oldest county fairs in Illinois, boasts a strong agricultural tradition with its livestock exhibits, horse shows, antique farm machinery, horticulture and grain displays, food competitions, tractor and truck pull and agri-entertainment.

Mark Tuttle, Farm Bureau Foundation President, and Ken Tyrrell, Sandwich Fair Livestock Superintendent, take a closwer look at the new pole barn structure weeks before the start of the fair.

Some ag-related highlights of the Sandwich Fair include:

Livestock Signs – The DeKalb County Farm Bureau Foundation for Agriculture has partnered with the Sandwich Fair to educate others about the many different species of livestock being shown at the fair. Signs are on display in each of the livestock buildings.

Beef & Pork Cookoffs –The Beef Cookoff, sponsored by the DeKalb-Kane Cattlemen’s Association, is scheduled for Thursday, Sept. 5 and the Pork Cookoff, sponsored by the DeKalb Area Pork Producers, is set for Friday, Sept. 6. Both contests are held at 1 p.m. in the tent located behind the Home Arts Building.

Livestock Shows – Livestock shows happen every day at the fair. For a livestock show schedule and a complete schedule of events plus more information about the Sandwich Fair visit their website: