Goats! Goats! Goats!
Moose Jaw hosts summer goat extravaganza
The Golden Mile Arena was a smelly place Friday afternoon.
Goats and their owners have come from across Canada for the Saskatchewan Goat Breeders Association’s (SGBA) Summer Extravaganza.
“We want to grow this industry,” says Chelsea Stellek, secretary of the association. “There’s a great market for goat meat and goat dairy products, especially with the increase in our ethnic communities.”
Arnie Steeves was frantically assessing Stellek’s goat Friday afternoon. He had a lot of goats to get to. Steeves knows goats.
He is a classifier with the Canadian Goat Society and a judge at this weekend’s event.
“I make sure that all the goat parts are in the right place. Are the mammary glands well-attached? Does the goat have grace and style?” says Steeves.
The event will host about 225 animals — all goats — and about 25 producers. One of those producers is Jaia Smith from Merritt, B.C.
“I’ve had goats since I was nine years old. It was always part of 4-H for me,” she said, while showing off a Lamancha goat breed — identified by their small ears. “Some say milk from the Lamancha breed is a little sweeter.”
The arena resonated with the sound of goats bleating as producers shuffled their goats to where they needed to be. Ernie Penney, who sits on the board of SGBA, believes this is a big deal for Moose Jaw.
“I would equate it to the Toronto Royal,” says Penney.
In the future, Penney has his sights set on entering the Western Canadian Agribition, the largest livestock show in Canada.
President of SGBA, Corbin St. John, agrees that the Friendly City is a perfect location.
“SGBA wanted this in Moose Jaw because it’s the gateway to southern Saskatchewan,” says St. John.
While goat meat is an acquired taste to many in Moose Jaw, for St. John, it’s a staple in his diet.
“It’s all I eat. I like a good beefsteak but goat chops, goat roast, rack of goat ribs, goat burgers…. so good,” says St. John.
The extravaganza runs all weekend, ending with an auction on Sunday.
The Saskatchewan Goat Breeders Association’s Summer Extravaganza is on at the Golden Mile Area this weekend in Moose Jaw.