MONTCALM TOWNSHIP — The swine show at the Montcalm County 4-H Fair featured youths and pigs of all shapes and sizes.
But Colin Hough and his 282-pound pig, Bob, stole the show Tuesday.
Colin, 10, has Down syndrome and shies away from most questions about his pig. But once he was in the arena, Colin charmed the crowd with his energy and enthusiasm as he showed Bob in showmanship and market categories.
Colin and his brother, Colton, 15, are members of the Winfield Hustlers 4-H Club. They reside on a hobby farm in Pine Township near Lakeview with their parents, John and Traci Hough.
“We thought we’d try a pig and see how it goes,” said Traci of Colin’s first year in 4-H.
The Hough family purchased four baby pigs in Big Rapids last March. Bob weighed about 50 pounds. He’s put on a little weight since then — about 230 pounds.
Colin said his favorite part about having a pig in 4-H is walking Bob in the arena using a showstick.
“I think he was very excited,” Traci said. “When they gave him his ribbon, he threw up both hands and went, ‘Yay!’”
Bob will be auctioned off along with other swine at the livestock auction at 5 p.m. Thursday at the fairgrounds.
“I’m hoping they learn responsibility and that they enjoy it,” said Traci of the 4-H experience for both her sons.
Lisa Johnson is one of the team leaders for the Winfield Hustlers 4-H Club.
“He’s a real asset to the club,” she said of Colin. “The other kids are all excited to help him out and interact. His joy when he got the ribbons today is something everyone should remember.”