A record 48 teams competed in 10 rounds of trivia ranging from pig facts, to Disney-movie characters, to sports trivia at the Meat Animal Sale Livestock Trivia Night fundraiser on Saturday, March 18, at Dodgeland High School in Juneau.

More than $15,000 was raised to help purchase new swine-barn gates for the Dodge County Fairgrounds. The current gates are 52 years old. “We have the third generation using these pens, now,” noted trivia-night co-chair, Eric Salmi. “The swine project is a big tradition, and we want to keep the family names coming back. However, to keep the tradition alive, we need a safe environment for the animals, the exhibitors, and the public.”

Ellen Maxwell, Dousman, was on a trivia team with her family; she was also lucky enough to win the 50/50 raffle. “I grew up in 4-H. We heard about this event and decided to participate. It’s a good cause we want to put our time and money into. I learned so much from 4-H and hope my children will, too.”

Table 28 won first place. Team members included Kendra Ladish, Jared Ladish, Dale Mueller, Brian Lestarge, Amy Steinbrink, and Norb Hansen. Table 38 came in second with team members: Jason and Tracie Luedtke, Bill and Michelle Hemling, David and Tisha Indermuehle, and David and Shelley Storhoff. Following closely behind in third was table four with Tom Kohn, Mason Eckhardt, Lorraine Kohn, Vicki Marshall, Ryan Marshall, Brittni Marshall, Owen Bowie, and Lisa Eckhardt.

Judges for the evening included Dave Behl, Watertown; Larry Dogs, Theresa; John Siedschlag, Watertown; Christine Siedschlag, Watertown; Heidi Tunak, Ashipun; and Louis Strupp, Watertown.

Although this was a fundraising event, money was not the only thing gained by the kids. Youth in the meat-animal project were very involved in the trivia fundraiser — from planning to working at the event. “I’ve learned to start early, plan ahead, and have every single detail organized,” noted trivia-night youth co-chair, Andy Boschert. “Hard work pays off.”

Boschert went on to add, “With this responsibility, my main goal was to support the future of the fairgrounds — this is not for myself, it is for others.”

“The current swine-barn gates have helped raise generations of kids, but they have served their purpose and need to be replaced,” noted Salmi. “To keep this tradition alive, we have to pull together to make it happen.”

Donations are still being accepted. Make checks payable to Dodge County Meat Animal Sale Committee and mail them to Eric Salmi, N1221 County Road G, Reeseville, WI 53579.

Written by Dori Lichty — farm wife, 4-H Mom, and full-time communicator