Students prepare livestock for Big Fresno Fair show

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Saturday, October 1, 2022
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The Big Fresno Fair is less than one week away, which means hundreds of students across the Valley are busy preparing their animals for show.

FRESNO, Calif. (KFSN) -- The Big Fresno Fair is less than one week away which means hundreds of students across the Valley are busy preparing their animals for show.

Sanger High School Senior Aidan Diaz is busy prepping his pig Diesela for show.

"I came up with the name because if a got a male pig, I was going to name it Diesel," explained Ruiz.

But when Ruiz got a girl pig instead, he decided to modify the name Diesel to Diesala and the two have been inseparable ever since.

"It's definitely fun to watch. He's such a hard worker and he makes it really easy to advise him," said Sanger High School Agriculture teacher Jordan Wilbourn. "He's always here if I need anything in the classroom, in the barn, he's the first one I go to."

Raising Diesela hasn't been easy. The extreme heat posed a hardship for all of Sanger High School's FFA students.

"The pigs can't cool themselves down naturally like we do. They don't sweat," explained Wilbourn, "so we had to go into emergency mode."

"We just tried to keep it as cool as possible, turn on all the fans in the farm, turn on the misters," added Ruiz. "Keep the pen cool by splashing water on the ground."

Water supply issues were also a challenge, so the team brought in reserve water tanks before finally building a new water tank on campus. After months of hard work, Ruiz says all the long hours are finally paying off.

"They're learning to be responsible. I mean, they're the primary caretaker of a live animal," added Wilbourn.

Ruiz will auction off Disela on October 15th and is still looking for a buyer. All money raised will go toward his college fund.

"It's been a great experience," said Ruiz. "I've met a lot of people and I'm still going to meet more people at the fair."