Hayden prepares for big weekend event

Bull sale, cowboy poetry, granary grand opening party scheduled

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Hayden will be buzzing with agriculture-related events today and Saturday.

Tonight is the Friends of 4-H and the Fair's Bunkhouse Bull Session, where cowboy poets, youths and musicians will perform. Saturday features the grand reopening of Yampa Valley Feeds at the old Hayden granary and the annual North Western Colorado Bull Sale.

The Bull Session and the bull sale will be at the Routt County Fairgrounds on Poplar Street. Doors open at 5 p.m. today for the poetry event at the Exhibit Hall, and the show starts at 7 p.m. and includes dinner. Fair Association member Don Hayes said ticket sales have been slow but that he was "enthusiastically optimistic."

The event is $30 a person, and youths will win scholarships for poems, essays and other submitted works.

"Come on down," Hayes said. "I hope we've got enough to feed everybody. Actually, I hope we run out. That'd be a good day."

The fair group, which aims to raise money to support 4-H and the fairgrounds, planned its event in conjunction with the bull sale. Saturday's sale is the only one in Northwest Colorado, said Marsha Daughenbaugh, executive director of the Community Agriculture Alliance.

"We're regional breeders selling to regional producers, and that's our primary goal: to give regional ranchers the opportunity to buy top-quality cattle," Daughenbaugh said.

Five heifers and 70 bulls will be on sale at the Multipurpose Building. Viewing of the animals starts at 9 a.m., and the Routt County CattleWomen will serve lunch for $5 a plate from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. The sale starts at 1 p.m.

Those who want to attend should arrive on time, Daughenbaugh said. The animals typically stay in the ring less than a minute.

"There are bleachers set up so people can just come and sit, and it's fun if no one has ever been to a live auction," she said.

Across town at 198 E. Lincoln Ave., Yampa Valley Feeds will offer another agriculture-focused event. Tammie Delaney and Sandy Messing took over the granary Jan. 1 and planned their grand reopening to coincide with the bull sale. They'll celebrate with sales and social events from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday.

Ranch House 4-H members will sell lunch from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m., and music goes from 2 to 4 p.m.

"My favorite, Greg Scott, is going to be singing, and we'll try to get people dancing," Delaney said.

She and Messing also invite Hayden folks to come by and tell stories about the granary. Everyone who's been in town for a time has a connection to the building, which opened in 1917, Delaney said.

"We're just hoping for a fun day and really hoping that several of the folks who either grew up working here or bringing their grain here can bring memorabilia or photos or articles if they're willing to share that," she said.

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