COVINGTON -- Newton County cattle and swine will be in the spotlight this weekend.
Students in third through 12th grades from the Newton County School System will show their livestock in the annual Newton County Classic Livestock Show Saturday.
Starting at 10 a.m. with a swine show, followed by showings of local heifers and steers, dozens of 4-H and FFA students will present their livestock at Newton High School's livestock barn, which is located at 140 Ram Drive in Covington.
"The atmosphere will be very family-oriented," said Abbey Brown, the agriculture teacher at Eastside High School. "It is a very relaxed, fun environment and people will be helping each other to get ready for the show."
She said this is a part of the educational field that many people never see, so she encourages anyone to come out to the shows.
"People should come out to get a chance to see these students doing what they love," she said. "Showing livestock gives these students an opportunity to work with these animals on a daily basis, and they develop a bond with the animals. It is very fun to see them in action doing what they love and to see how hard they've worked and all that they have accomplished."
Students and their families have been preparing their livestock with daily care, including feeding, walking and grooming, and will continue even on the show day.
After showing their animals twice, students will be judged on their animals based on its traits and also on their abilities as a showman during the presentation of their animals.
Students will be ranked and given cash prizes and belt buckles.
After the show, some guests can participate in the traditional Ole Timer's Show, during which parents and other family members attempt to show the livestock.
"The students really love this because they laugh and joke around about who will win, and they have a lot of fun getting to coach their parents, siblings and friends, rather than it being the other way around," Brown said. "Often there are past showmen who come out and get to get back into the show ring one more time."
Newton County students next will travel to Perry for the Georgia Livestock Show from Feb. 17 to 21 to compete against other show men from around the state.