Alpaca Owners Association, Inc. (AOA)

Peoria Chosen as Host of 2018 National Alpaca Show

Premiere alpaca event of the year to take place March 23-25


Peoria, IL -- (ReleaseWire) -- 02/19/2018 --The Alpaca Owners Association, Inc. (AOA) National Alpaca Show sponsored by Fun in the Country Alpacas, which draws hundreds of alpaca enthusiasts and fiber artists from across the country, is held in a new geographic location nearly every year.

This year, AOA selected the Peoria Civic Center to host the 2018 National Alpaca Show.

"We are thrilled to bring our national show to Peoria in 2018," said Bud Synhorst, AOA executive director. "We visited several cities throughout the U.S. to choose a host site for our premiere industry event and the city of Peoria, as well as the Peoria Civic Center, quickly rose to the top by exceeding all of our expectations. We are certain our members will enjoy all the city has to offer."

Hours are:

Friday, March 23 - 8:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m.
Saturday, March 24 - 8:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m.
Sunday, March 25 - 8:00 a.m. – 3:00 p.m.

Alpacas from across the country will be featured in the show ring competition. The show will be comprised of classes judging conformation and fleece quality in many categories for both Suri and Huacaya alpacas.

Dozens of vendors and farm displays will sell the latest alpaca fashions and hand-crafted items.

What better way to learn more about the growing North American alpaca industry than to talk to breeders from throughout North America and beyond, and meet hundreds of alpacas face-to-face in one location? Now you can. And it's FREE!

Alpaca Selfie Booth

This year the public can take a selfie with an alpaca at the Alpaca Selfie Booth. Haven't perfected your selfie taking skills quite yet? No worries. Show volunteers can take your photo for you. The Alpaca Selfie Booth is is FREE!

Alpaca Costume Contest

On Saturday, March 24 at approximately 2:00 p.m. participants of all ages will take to the ring to compete alongside their alpacas in a costume contest. Costumes will be judged on the comfort of the animal with foreign objects on their head, legs and feet, and how imaginative the costume is as well as the story each participant must write telling about the costume.

For more information about the Alpaca Owners Association or the AOA National Show sponsored by Fun in the Country Alpacas, visit

Additional Information

About Alpacas
Alpacas, cousins to the llama, are beautiful, intelligent animals native to the Andean Mountain range of South America, particularly Peru, Bolivia and Chile.

Today, the United States boasts two types of alpacas. Although almost physically identical, the two types of alpacas are distinguished by their fleece. The huacaya (wa-Ki'-ah) is the more common of the two and has a fluffy, extremely fine coat. On the other hand, the suri (SUR-ee) is more rare and has fleece that is silky and resembles pencil-locks.

Adult alpacas stand at approximately 36 inches at the withers and generally weigh between 150 and 200 pounds. They do not have horns, hooves, claws or incisors. Alpacas are alert, intelligent, curious and predictable. Social animals that seek companionship, they communicate most commonly by softly humming.

About Alpaca Fleece
Alpacas are shorn, without harm, every twelve to eighteen months. Each alpaca can produce five to ten pounds of luxurious fleece. Long ago, this fleece was reserved for royalty. Today, it is purchased in its raw fleece form by hand-spinners and fiber artists, while knitters buy it as yarn.

Because of its soft texture, alpaca fleece is sometimes compared to cashmere. The fleece also has the luster of silk, making it even more coveted. Alpaca is just as warm as wool, yet it is a mere 1/3 the weight. It comes in 16 natural colors and can be dyed any desired shade.

Containing no lanolin, alpaca fleece is also naturally hypoallergenic. Most people who are sensitive to wool find that they can wear alpaca without the itching or irritation they feel from wool because alpaca fleece is smooth. Additional performance characteristics include: stretch, water repellency and odor reduction. For travelers, clothing made from alpaca is desirable because it is wrinkle-resistant.