Agriculture is the showcase of the New York State Fair, but farming is changing with technology. The fair may be showcasing the best of the best, but Durhamville Farmer Kevin Ziemba is concerned about the smaller dairy farms struggling to make ends meet.
"Those dairy farmers who are experiencing those things need to reach out and hopefully they’re getting the help that they need. Not only from a financial standpoint and support and aide, but any mental health issues, you know those things are real."
Not only is the farming industry changing, but so are the programs that used to be focused on agriculture. 4-H Program Educator Lynette Kay explains.
"4-H has been around for over 100 years. It was typically started as an agriculture based program, but now it reaches out to so much more. You don’t have to have a cow or horse to in 4-H. We have stem projects, we have arts and crafts, we have geospatial, we do the gamut of anything to do with 4-H."
If agriculture isn’t your thing, Oneida Indian representative Sage Thomas recommends looking into the Native American exhibits. In addition to learning about the past, you can take in some music and dancing which is all part of the Native American culture.
"We give thanks to everything that we have. You know even the grass, the trees, to the water, the animals, everything has a balance to it, so we’re thankful for all of that, and so when we do that we do it in honor of them, for the things that they give to us."
If you are coming out for the day, take the time to explore because much of what makes the New York State Fair great is the locals.