Before the 59th annual Morton County Fair and 4-H Achievement Days formally began, an evening of fun competition for about 40 boys and girls took place at the fairgrounds in New Salem on Wednesday. Timed races of pole bending, barrel racing, keyhole racing and goat tying was a chance to introduce the events to the youngest competitors, called the Cloverbuds, as well as for the junior and senior division riders to hone their skills with their horse and shave seconds from their personal times. For the older riders ribbons for grand champion and reserved champion upped the ante for each event. The five day community event concludes today with several activities, livestock and exhibit shows, a free hamburger lunch, a ranch rodeo and live music. About 400 youth participate in the 17 4-H clubs in Morton County. 8-2019