The Casillas Family of Penn Valley has been named Family of the Year by the Nevada County Fair’s Board of Directors. The Board chose the Casillas Family because of their ongoing participation in the Nevada County Fair and their ongoing commitment and support of Nevada County agricultural youth programs.
Dan and Beth Casillas have been active in the Fair and youth agriculture programs since they moved to Nevada County in 1995. They have served as leaders for Cool Hollow 4H, where Dan served as the beef leader, and Beth volunteered at the Fair’s 4H food booth, as well as the Cattlewomen’s Red Barn. They are also supporters of the annual Junior Livestock Auction, and enjoy watching the Fair’s showing competitions
When not volunteering or working on youth projects, Dan is busy running his own cattle service business, Casillas Cattle Service. Beth serves as a legal secretary for the Placer County District Attorney.
Their children, Emmalee and Manuel, have also been actively involved in the Fair for many years. Both began exhibiting animals at the age of 9 and, prior to that, they entered still exhibits. Emmalee showed steers and breeding cattle in both 4H and FFA, in addition to showing commercial breeding hogs for four years as a side project. Manuel began exhibiting chickens as a pee wee 4H member, then graduated to steers and breeding cattle. The 2010 Fair will be his last year exhibiting a steer. Emmalee and Manuel also participated in the Fair’s Ag Mechanics competition and auction as Bear River FFA members.
Both of the Casillas children have gone on to pursue agricultural education. Emmalee, now 22, recently graduated from Fresno State University with a degree in Agriculture Education. She is currently attending graduate school at Fresno State to obtain her teaching credential. Manuel, 18, recently completed the welding program at Butte College. He is now continuing his education at Sierra College, and will eventually transfer to Fresno State.
The Casillas family received nominations from both Kim Rounds and Tasha Volheim, who both have had personal experience with the family.
“Year after year, the Casillas family dedicates their time to the Fair,” said Rounds. “Their sincere kindness, love for the Fair, and honest respect for what it does for the families and children of our community is evident through their actions and attitudes.”
Volheim seconds those comments. “Whether it is helping kids, Fair officials, or helping out at the livestock auction, the Casillas family is always willing and able to do whatever it takes to make the Fair a great experience for everyone. They are a great example of what the Fair family should be – a family that enjoys the Fair and puts out the extra effort to help others enjoy the experience, too.”
About being named the Fair’s Family of the Year, Dan says, “We are very excited to be this year’s Fair family! It seems a great way to end our children’s 15-year Nevada County showing career. We always look forward to the Fair each year and we’ll continue to support it and Nevada County agricultural youth in the future.”
The Casillas Family will be honored at opening ceremonies of the Nevada County Fair, which runs August 11 – 15. They will receive free admission to the Fair, along with parking passes, free carnival rides, and admission to all five nights of arena events. In addition, Shaffers Originals of Grass Valley will create a family portrait to commemorate the family’s selection as the Fair’s Family of the Year.
For more information about the Nevada County Fair, visit NevadaCountyFair.com or call (530) 273-6217.
Source: Wendy Oaks
Publicist Nevada County Fair