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LA County Fair returns with CPP hosting The Big Red Barn

By Kaitlyn Oliveros, May 17, 2022

The Los Angeles County Fair made its return to the Pomona Fairplex after a 2-year hiatus on May 5, with CPP’s Don B. Huntley College of Agriculture hosting the Big Red Barn.

The fair is celebrating its 100th anniversary with a “Back to Our Roots” theme, which will run until May 30. Guests will once again get the opportunity to enjoy fun rides, games, fair food and live music performances.

Opening day consisted of a live music performance from “Selenamos,” as well as a variety of exhibits, such as the Haunt Super Show and eSports Gaming World. Guests also had the opportunity to meet the fair’s mascot Thummer the Pig.

For the last two years, the beloved fair was pushed back due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. With the fair making its return, it’s also the Big Red Barn’s return. Guests can interact with cows, goats and chickens. Grieselda Rodriguez, an animal science student, shared what it was like being back at the fair.

“It’s been going good,” said Rodriguez. “Seeing everybody see the animals again for the first time in two years at the LA Fair has been really awesome and being able to educate everybody (on the animals). It’s a really fun thing to do.”

Connie Lee | The Poly Post

The Big Red Barn consists of a petting farm, goat and cow milking, chicken egg hatching and a Cal Poly Pomona and friends talk show. Students were highly involved in the process of setting up the barn, from the animals to the decorations.

“It was a basic set, but we did decorate everything ourselves,” said Rodriguez. “Everything in the Big Red Barn was basically more or less decorated by us and everything in the green barn was also decorated by students. Basically, for the last two weeks, we’ve been here almost day and night just preparing everything.”

Rodriguez hopes that guests realize that these animals aren’t scary. She hopes to see more children and adults interact with the animals by petting and feeding them, forming more human and animal connections.

While some students are making their return to the Big Red Barn, others  are getting their first experience working at the Big Red Barn. Kylie Carter, a first-year animal science student, said that this was her first year working at the fair. She shared what she hopes guests take from this experience.

“I’m hoping they get educated about the sheep and goats here,” said Carter. “How they can tell which are sheep and goats by their tails and everything like that.”

The fair brings a variety of people whether it’s to enjoy the rides, eat some fair food, or just to walk around and take in the scenery. Bella Gatica, a Chino Hills high school student, shared what brings her to the fair and what she likes most about it.

“In general, I always like going to the fair,” said Gatica. “Just the vibe here, the music, the food, everything. Even the people here, I just really love it.”

Gatica also talked about her love for animals, which is what brought her to the petting zoo. She said she hopes to interact with all the animals at the petting zoo.

The LA County Fair is open throughout the month of May on Thursdays through Sundays. To purchase tickets or for more information on the Big Red Barn and other attractions, students can visit the LA County Fair website or follow their Instagram @lacountyfair.

Feature image by Connie Lee. 

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