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In March of 1958, the contract was let on the first Garza County 4-H Barn and Fair Building after many years of hard work and preparation. Construction by Forest Lumber Co. was completed just in time for the October 1959 stock show and fair to be held in the building which was located south of the City-County Park on the curve of US-84.
The building consisted of a kitchen, two restrooms, a storage closet and a large exhibit room. The total fair building was 40’x60’. It was adjoined on the east by the stock barn which was 44’x80’. The total cost of construction was $8,918.
Adult members of the original 4-H Board at the time were Floyd Richardson, president; Faye Payton, Oreta Bevers, Barnie Jones, Virginia Mock and Glenn Davis. Garza County Extension Agents at the time were Lewis Herron and Jessie Pearce. Faye Maddox was later appointed to the board upon the resignation of Virginia Mock and W. W. Johnson was appointed at the death of Glenn Davis. Also working very hard preparing for the building was Mrs. Hardy (Alma) Smith.
To further help the youth of the county with their livestock projects, a group of fathers, young farmers and businessmen organized the Garza County Junior Livestock Association. The charter was formed in 1964 with the first GCJLA stock show being held in 1965 at the 4-H building.
Due to the continued growth of the show, an addition was made to the barn in 1968 by GCJLA. It was just to the south of the original building. The new addition was used to pen the livestock and contained washrooms and restrooms. The other barn was used as the show ring with grandstands and still contained the scales for weighing.
Interest in the show and the number of exhibitors continued to steadily increase. By 1978, the former facilities had been outgrown. Therefore, on Mary 18, 1978, the 4-H Building Committee met with the newly appointed Garza Co. Jr. Livestock Assn. Building Committee and combined their efforts, interests, and buildings and began making plans for a new, larger stock barn and fair building.
The GCJLA Building Committee appointed consisted of President Noel White, Vice-President Jimmie Bartlett, Secretary Mack Terry, Tommy Young, Tommy Middleton and Jay Bird.
In June of 1978, the Building Committee met with the Garza Co. Commissioners Court and sold the old 4-H Barn for $35,000. On June 22, 1978, bids for a new building were accepted with Noel Builders of Plainview receiving the contract. The total cost was an estimated $62,500. The Association put down $2,500 on the building. The $15,000 down payment by the county was to be used to finish the fair building, build pens, washrooms and restrooms. A note was made at the First National Bank for $45,000 to be paid off in seven years at 11% interest. Construction of the new building began in November of 1978.
The new building is 80’x180’ with the fair building being 40’x60’ plus restrooms. Two washrooms and the weigh-in area were built on the west of the stock barn. The building was built on land bought from the Post-Montgomery Estate and the Double U Ranch where the 4-H and FFA feeding pens were already located on North US-84 by the Post Stampede Rodeo Grounds.
Since the organization of the Garza County Junior Livestock Association in 1964, presidents of the association have been:
1965: Jim Jackson
1966: Homer J. Irons
1967: Jerry Thuett
1968: Arnold Sanderson
1969: Jerry Thuett
1970: Toby Thomas
1971: Fred Myers
1972: Tommy Young
1973: Tommy Young
1974: J. L. Hedrick
1975: J. L. Hedrick
1976: Ronnie Dunn
1977: Jimmie Bartlett
1978: Jimmie Bartlett
1979-1982: Noel K. White
Serving as secretaries for the association have been Homer J. Irons, Vernon Scott, Fred Myers, Helen Livingston and Orabeth White.
In 1982, the premium sale hit an all-time high of over $52,000 with a record number of entries by 124 exhibitors from all over Garza County and the success of the stock show and sale continues to grow.
This years Garza County Stock Show will be held on Saturday, January 18.