Long-time 4-H’er Doesn’t Let Injury Steal Her Fair
Fair this year is definitely a different experience from a wheelchair, Maria Geis said. Seated in the shade under a tree with her friends outside the steer barn at the Campbell County Fair, the 14-year-old talked about the accident last spring that has her currently laid up and on the mend.
In March, she had been doing chores, helping to move cattle on her ATV, when it overturned as she tried to open a gate. The fall snapped her fibula in half and shortened her tibia by four inches; the bone was just too damaged.
A month in the hospital, followed by a few more in a wheelchair, and she should be up and walking again. In the meantime, her friends Sage Edwards, Layla Milner and her younger sister Addie are content pushing her around from event to event as she takes in one of her favorite activities of the year.
“It’s a little hard to watch,” she admitted, noting that this will be the first time in years she won’t be competing in the 4-H competition with the flock of Targhee sheep she inherited from her older brother Wyatt when he headed off to Casper College.
But, that’s okay, she added; she still likes everything about fair except this year, missing out on all the bike riding.
Her buddy, 12-year-old Sage will be competing with her steers and heifers, while 11-year-old Layla will be showing her sheep.
If it were up to her, Layla said she’d rather be showing steers and heifers with Sage, but her parents said she’s too short for such large animals.
For her part, 8-year-old Addie, who will be competing for the first time, is totally happy to show her sheep, and agrees with her parents that she and her sister are far too short for steers and heifers.
Meanwhile, the girls are looking forward to watching all the events as well as checking out the trade show.
“It’s a lot of fun,” Addie said with a toothy smile, as the girls took turns pushing their friend down the sidewalk toward the next event.