Monday, February 7, 2011

2011 PA Convention

Well, it was a L-O-N-G weekend this year at the PA show, but as usual the trip was well worth it because it is such a wonderful show with such fabulous people:).

I brought a total of 8 rabbits to show and 8 babies to sell, so the car was stacked from top to bottom with bunnies, bunny equipment, and lots of misc. items. Entries this year were down again, unfortunately, probably because of bad weather on Sat, but all in all it was a good turnout with a decent amount of rabbits shown.

There were 4 shows over the course of the weekend---2 UARC Specialties and 2 Open shows hosted by the PaSRBA club. Judges for the specialties were Randy Schumaker (Sat.) and Eric Stewart (Sun.), and judges for the Open shows were Jay Hreiz and Donyelle Schultz.

This was a very interesting weekend mainly because the results of each show were all over the place. Typically there is one rabbit or breeder that stands out (or even 2 or 3), but this time each show had a different result based on some very different styles and preferences of individual judges. I thought a lot about these differences over the weekend and made some observations that I hadn't before, but since this post would be way too long with this and the results of the show, I will just have to save them for next time:).

The rabbits I brought in were good, but some were beginning to slip their coats and I'm sure they would have been happier if the show had been held 2-3 weeks earlier:). In the first specialty only one of my rabbits won it's class (and grudgingly at that, LOL), and in the first Open every rabbit I had was thrown off in favor of a different style of coat. In the second Open on Sun. I got BOS with Giacomo, and in our 2nd Specialty bunnies that were owned or bred by me won every class but one, and Giacomo earned BOS again with Diana winning both BOB and the Specialty BIS.

So all in all it was a successful weekend with Giacomo and Diana picking up their 8th and 9th legs, and all the babies went home with wonderful new owners, freeing up tons of cage space and making it possible for me to breed again ad nauseum, LOL.

Here are some pictures that were taken over the weekend. The best ones were taken by Julie who is a far better photographer than I am (for sure!), and the last ones where the most interesting things that happened were not photographed, were taken by me:-).

This first photo is of the Wool, Skein, and Garment contest that UARC hosted. There were some beautiful articles included like this vest that was made by a youth entrant. Everyone who passed by made wonderful comments on it:).

This is the Wool Room filling up on Saturday:

These were my bunnies on the table in their carriers:

This is Julie and Ellen at the UARC table Sunday after everything was cleaned up and winding down:

This is a nice REW bunny owned by Karina Anderson that is the offspring of a buck I sold her mom two or more years ago:)

This is Pam and I (and several other breeders) watching the judging on Sat:

This is Randy Schumaker judging the Colored Sr. doe class:

This is Ashley and Kim holding bunnies in cubbies which really should have been wider, made of wire, and had metal risers in each hole (this is a standard cubby complaint for every wool breed---!:( ).

Here is Jay Hreiz judging the Saturday Open Show:

This is a beautiful photo that Julie took of all the Specialty winners on Saturday.

Speaking of Julie, here is a picture of her writing for Eric Stewart on Sunday at the second Specialty show!

And since I did not get any picture of her at the show (not thinking of it as usual:)), here is a picture of Diana taken at home several days before the show. This bunny, along with every other doe I brought and entered, had just weaned a litter 3 weeks prior (2 weeks before in this picture:)). Despite this handicap, she and all the others managed to grow competitive show coats and place at the top of all their classes. I know I am always bragging about the toughness and all-around versatility of the French Angora, but factors like this (that cannot even be evaluated on the showtable) just go to prove how wonderful and valuable these rabbits REALLY are. They are truly one of a kind:).

Anyway, now it is time to shear rabbits and get back to the serious business of breeding. I am working out compatible pairs at the moment and should have litters once again which strain the confines of time and space (as ALWAYS, LOL!)

Have a great week:).

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