There are a lot of big issues on tap as we get rolling here in 2015.
From Windfarms, which might or might not be helpful to schools and the environment, to the water issue and how to get drinking water from a lake that continues to dwindle.
But those are issues we will get to in due time. Right now, the big issue of 2015 is the Brown County Youth Fair.
Now, I am probably what you consider a city boy. I grew up in Plano and the only farm I have ever been on was the one my grandparents owned for about five minutes when I was around the age of six or seven. I visited that place no more than a handful of times during my youthy and the only thing I remember from the experience is getting bucked off a horse that my grandparents let me name.
I did cover the Weatherford Rodeo as a sports writer back in 2001, and then wrote a few stories from the Houston Livestock and Rodeo Show in 2011 and 2012, but those were mostly on the rodeo cowboys and included nothing livestock oriented.
So, I have spent little to no time around pigs and goats and steer and rabbits in my four-plus decades of life.
But this is a new day and a new era for me, so I am truly looking forward to this coming week when I can experience what a youth fair is all about.
To help me get in the spirit, my youngest child, who is 13-years old, will be showing a pig this week.
Cameron has grown up, like me, a city boy and has never owned a pair of boots, and I believe has just one pair of jeans crumpled up somewhere in his room.
However, he is game for anything and raising a pig was something that he got excited about when he was informed this past summer that we would be moving to Brownwood.
He is lucky that he has several cousins and an aunt that have lived in this community their whole lives and raising animals, especially pigs, is something they specialize in.
He even has a cousin, Stevi Rumfield, who was the Brown County Youth Fair Queen in 2008.
So, since we arrived here in mid-July, Cameron has been gung-ho on learning everything there is to know about raising a pig.
He talks about it all the time.
Since we landed here, Cameron has learned how to feed and walk pigs. Yes, walk pigs.
I thought dogs were about the only animal you take for a walk, but I was wrong. Pigs have to be walked so they can be shown during the youth fair.
I guess you really do learn something new each day.
But he dove right in and soaked up the knowledge that his cousin Stevi and her mom Susan Rumfield have bestowed on him.
And if you know any 13-year olds, then you know they already know all there is to know about everything in the world.
The best thing about this whole experience from a parentís perspective is that is teaching my kid to be responsible.
And not like doing chores responsible, which is like pulling teeth and is hated every step of the way.
No, the responsibility he is learning here is something he has showed great affinity for. He WANTS to feed the pig. He WANTS to walk has pig. He WANTS to shave his pig ó which is something that happened this weekend and he could hardly sleep Friday night knowing that was what his Saturday would consist of. Again, I had no idea you had to shave your pig so they were ready for the show.
Back to my point, though.
All that said, what has made this so enjoyable is that he hasnít been this excited about anything, except playing sports, since he was born.
And when you think about it, this is the football, baseball, basketball, soccer or track and field season, all in one week, for the kids that donít do athletics, but choose to raise animals or do home economic projects instead.
This is their week to shine.
So, good luck to Cameron and all the entrants from local FAA and 4-H programs as they are set to compete, and ultimately earn some scholarship money.
This dad will be watching, and learning, as the week goes by. And hopefully, along the way, give you the reader what you deserve in coverage from the biggest event so far in 2015.
Russ Goodall is the editor of the Brownwood Bulletin. His column appears on Sundays. He may be reached by e-mail at email@example.com.