ONAWA, Iowa (KCAU) – Some kids come to the Monona County fair to observe the animals but these kids are coming to take care of the animals.

Pigs are always featured in the Monona County fair but 9 years ago, that tradition was beginning to fade after only one pig was brought to the fair. Rick Watson, the Monona County superintendent, explained how the decline began.

“The population of pigs in our area in Monona County has decreased immensely because not very many people raise pigs anymore,” said Watson.

That’s when two fair board members came up with the idea to liven up the tradition in their community

“I also thought that things needed to change and we needed to do something different. We put our heads together and we came up with a Swine Project.

Now, not only are there more pigs at the annual Monona County fair but there are dozens of kids doing the work to provide for them.

“We have about 34 kids in the program. When we started, we had about 11 or 12 so more kids. Now kids are seeing what’s going on around here. They see how much fun these kids are having and they’re interested and want to be a part of it,” said Watson

It’s a tradition that doesn’t plan on ending any time soon for the folks in Monona County.