What better way to kick off a state fair than with the crowning of the Biggest Boar contest? On August 7, “Peabody” staved off all comers with a whopping 1,277-pound frame to win the 39th Annual Big Boar Contest at the 2014 Iowa State Fair. Peabody, who lives in Pleasant Hill, Iowa, is a five-year-old crossbred boar who was raised by a group of owners, called the “Friends of Peabody.” The huge porker will be on display in the swine barn throughout the duration of the Iowa State Fair, which runs from Aug. 7-17.

According to a news release, Lori Dvorak, who presented the boar in the competition said, “Peabody was named in honor of our ‘State Fair Gang’ friend, Brad Peyton, who passed away in September from pancreatic cancer. Brad's college nickname was Peabody.” Dvorak, a 4-H member from North Polk, Iowa, said bringing Peabody to the fair was “a team effort.” She raised him with support from Dr. Craig Rowles, DVM, the  ElitePORK Partnership, Tom Dittmer and Grandview Farms.

Taking second-place honors was “Big Mac” who weighed in at 1,142 lbs., 135 lbs. McDonald Acres of Hopkinton, Iowa, raised the two-year-old boar. Maybe in a few more years, he’ll get as big as the champion.

“The Iowa State Fair Big Boar competition is a staple for swine industry relations to the public,” said Mike Shindelar, executive director of Feed Energy, sponsor of the Big Boar contest. “While our company and the swine industry focus on developing lean meat for consumers, [the Big Boar contest] showcases the great families that bring the food to our tables. Congratulations to all who exhibited!”

The Iowa State Fair Big Boar competition is one of the top attractions during the fair (along with the famous Butter Cow). This year’s competition hosted nine entries, all of which were from Iowa. If they all weighed more than 1,000 lbs., we’re talking more than four tons of pork on the hoof.

That’s a lot of bacon!