Peasley: Farmers to keep eye on weather at McHenry County Fair
McHenry County Fair officials have included uncertain weather conditions in their planning as they look forward to the start of the 64th annual county fair Wednesday at the fairgrounds in Woodstock.
The fair has air conditioning in most buildings, and farmers will watch closely to be sure animals and poultry are not adversely affected by the heat.
Opening day will feature the 6 p.m. dedication of the renovated swine barn. The ceremony will welcome visitors to the 4-H Livestock Barn Memorial Project. This memorial project honors three young Huntley residents who died in the last 2½ years. Grant Fruin, Kevin Ziller and Jennifer Kearns were active 4-H members who showed pigs and cattle. Every August, they spent great times together at the fair.
The McHenry County Fair Foundation is accepting tax-deductible donations for the project.
The Miss McHenry County Scholarship Pageant at 7 p.m. Wednesday will feature 16 contestants from throughout McHenry County. The young women will compete for a $2,000 scholarship to the college or vocational school of their choice.
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WGN Agribusiness director Orion Samuelson will be the featured speaker at the McHenry County Farm Bureau’s 100th anniversary dinner Aug. 24 at Donley’s Village banquet hall in Union.
Tickets are available at the Farm Bureau office, 1102 McConnell Road, Woodstock, or by calling 815-338-1520.
A display will feature many of my favorite agricultural photos and early issues of Farmer’s News.
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From a modest home on Clay Street in 1914 to a huge expansion in Huntley, the Woodstock Hospital (now called Centegra) has made giant leaps forward. I remember when I arrived in Woodstock in October 1947, a small hospital (later named Memorial Hospital) in a former residence on South Street served as the center of the community’s health care.
After considerable discussion, the hospital board decided to expand health care facilities. A key step was to hire Bert Hanson as administrator in 1956. With his skill and diplomacy, Hanson united the community, and the beautiful, modern hospital opened on South Street in 1958. Further expansion in the 1960s kept pace with ongoing demands in health care.
Many residents remember the merger of the Woodstock and McHenry hospital leadership, resulting in what we call Centegra today.
Approval last Tuesday to construct a $233 million health care center with a 128-bed hospital in Huntley adds another milestone to the 1914 Woodstock beginning.
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The McHenry County Historical Society is sponsoring a 50th anniversary logo design art contest for high school students. The historical society seeks an enduring image committed to the preservation and ongoing education of local history. The winner will receive $100 and recognition.
For information, visit www.mchsonline.org.
• Don Peasley has been editor, columnist and historian in McHenry County since October 1947. He began his association with Shaw Publications in 1950. He is a frequent contributor of articles/photographs. He can be reached at 815-338-1533.