CARTHAGE, Mo. — Why did the chicken cross the road? Because the “Maple Leaf Chicken Pageant” has returned.

This event started in 2018 but hasn’t happened in two years.

This afternoon, 20 chickens and their handlers suited up to show off their feathers.

The contestants were divided among age groups. With some help from the crowd, the chickens and their handlers were judged on their costumes, and handlers on their knowledge of their chicken.

“Well, it’s educational. A lot of people don’t have chickens. A lot of people live in town. Some people may not have even seen a chicken, and there are going to be a lot of different unique birds here. It’s going to be really fun,” said Angela Hande, Chicken Pageant Judge.

A percentage of the proceeds from this year’s chicken pageant goes to the Carthage 4-H Club.