In a competition of plump porkers Thursday, a rotund boar named Itty Bitty took home the title at the opening day of the Iowa State Fair.
Itty Bitty — obviously a misnomer — won the 2018 Big Boar contest barely, weighing in at a whopping 1,163 pounds, 2 more than runner-up Yo Yo. Ernie Barnes, who’s been the superintendent at the Swine Barn for 16 years, said the contest was “the closest we’ve ever had.”
Of the five competing boars, four finished at or above 1,100 pounds. Barnes said the 2-pound difference at the top of the podium could’ve been made up by something as slight as a “good” drink of water.
“We’ve had bigger boars, but we’ve never had them this close in competition,” he said.
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Forty-four members of the West Delaware High School Future Farmers of America (FFA) chapter care for Itty Bitty, whom the chapter bought in April, President Jim Drummy said.
“I couldn’t believe it,” Drummy said of Itty Bitty’s triumph.
Itty Bitty, 4, likes being washed and having his back scratched. He eats laying down, and his favorite food is Iowa corn. He’ll sometimes eat 16 pounds of it per day, Drummy said.
Five-year-old Yo Yo, who will become and assume the duties of the winner if Itty Bitty is somehow incapacitated, is a former stud and current Oreo fiend. His owner, Robert Owen, said his hog ate 6 pounds of Oreo-type cookies, 25 cinnamon rolls and nine honey buns before Thursday’s competition.
Mud-loving Blue Man came in third place at 1,123 pounds, and Slim Jim — who wasn’t — finished fourth at 1,100 pounds.
Four-year-old Mickey Bone had to be bribed onto the scale with doughnuts, but that wasn’t enough to keep him out of fifth place (1,045 pounds).
The 2012 winner, Reggie, still holds the Big Boar Contest record of 1,335 pounds.
The state fair runs through Aug. 19.
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