Alpacas, sheep, cattle, goats and horses, oh my!
It must be the annual Schaghticoke Fair, which ran Aug. 27 to Sept. 1. Featuring 4-H and open competitions youth and adult exhibitors alike hauled livestock of all breeds and types into the Fair.
Exhibitors had their animals on display for both competition and to engage the general public in learning about the farming way of life.
For many youth showing at the Fair is an annual treat. Sixteen-year old Lindsey McMahon of Hooskip Farm in Petersburgh, NY, has brought her family’s dairy cattle to the Schaghticoke Fair since she was eight years old. “I like the competition,” she said, “it’s different than any sporting event.”
Raised on her family’s second generation dairy farm, Lindsey enjoys working on the 115 cow dairy. Located in the River valley that straddles New York and Vermont, the farm enjoys 716 acres of fertile land where it is able to grow all of the crops needed to feed the herd. Inspired by the Hoosic River, which runs through the McMahon’s property and the Skiparee Mountains that border the land, the farm was aptly named Hooskip Farm.
Committed to promoting the farming lifestyle, Lindsey was named the 2013 Rensselaer County Dairy Princess. In February 2014, she was crowned the New York State 1st Alternate Dairy Princess.
“Agriculture is struggling as an industry and it’s important to keep it going,” she said, “it means a lot to me that I get to travel across our state to promote the industry and represent New York farms as the New York State 1st Alternate Dairy Princess.”
The family owned operation is dedicated to preserving agriculture for generations to come. The family first conserved 317 acres of land through the Vermont Land Trust and in 2010 the McMahons conserved an additional 343 acres with the Agricultural Stewardship Association.