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May 20, 2021

Welcome to the County Fair Podcast! This is the podcast where fair influencers share their valuable insights, strengthening and growing the long-lived tradition of the county fair.


This week, your hosts Jeffrey Palermo and Christina Rudolph, are hearing from Ashlee Laird; the CT Instructional Specialist of Ag Sciences at Katy ISD in Katy, Texas.


Recently, Katy ISD just wrapped up their 2021 Katy ISD FFA Livestock Show. This year was their 78th year running and they had over 500 children that showed. 


In this episode, Ashlee shares about how the Katy ISD Livestock Show teaches so much more than just the responsibility of raising the animals and teaching showmanship — they also teach their kids to be members of the broader community. She shares how and why their show is set up for live sales and barn sales, how they adapted their show this year to the pandemic, how ShoWorks has streamlined their process, key lessons they have learned over the years of running the show, and advice on how to successfully run a fair of your own.


Ashlee is doing an amazing job representing Katy ISD, Katy Texas, and Harris County. She has so much to share in today’s conversation — you won’t want to miss out!


Topics of Discussion:

[:00] About the County Fair Podcast.

[:19] This show is brought to you by ShoWorks.

[:40] Today’s scripture.

[:54] Jeffrey Palermo and Christina introduce and welcome their guest, Ashlee Laird.

[1:18] Ashlee shares the origin story of Katy ISD FFA Livestock Show and how it has become a long standing tradition.

[3:15] Do most kids show because they have a family history of it? Or do they have a lot of first-time showers?

[3:57] How many AG teachers do they have in their school district?

[4:59] How and why Katy ISD FFA Livestock Show is set up for live sales, barn sales, and add-ons.

[9:17] What they newly implemented this year due to the pandemic and what they learned from it.

[11:02] How ShoWorks aided Katy ISD’s Livestock Show.

[12:47] The challenges Katy ISD faced in planning their Livestock Show and how they overcame them.

[15:38] How ShoWorks helped Katy ISD save money.

[16:50] About ShoWorks.

[17:28] Ashlee speaks about buyer communication and the key pieces they put in place at their livestock show to get buyer’s to show up and be excited.

[20:00] Unique aspects and traditions of the Katy ISD Livestock Show.

[21:05] What does it take to effectively run an FFA fair? Ashlee shares some of the key characteristics and pieces you should put in place in order to be successful.

[22:51] The minimal physical staff need to put on the fair.

[23:40] How many different roles are needed to conduct the sales at the fair?

[24:42] How many animals did they have this year?

[25:47] How many animals could they expect a meat market or a butcher to take?

[26:16] How you can donate your animal purchase and decide where you want the market value to go.

[27:30] Ashley shares about the exciting facilities they have in place for the Livestock Show.

[31:32] Jeffrey and Christina thank Ashlee Laird for joining the County Fair Podcast!


Mentioned in this Episode:

Katy ISD

Katy ISD FFA Livestock Show

Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo

Career and Leadership Development Events |


The County Fair is Brought to You By ShoWorks

ShoWorks’ fair entry software has set the gold standard for fairs across the United States and Canada for more than 20 years, serving more than 75% of the country’s fairs. ShoWorks is in place to handle fair entries, billing, payouts, and the incorporation of virtual elements into your show and auction. Visit to learn more!


God Moment

“May God give you of heaven's dew and of earth's richness — an abundance of grain and new wine.” Genesis 27:28


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