The 2019 Fayette County Junior Fair Beef Show was held on Tuesday evening a couple hours behind schedule.
The 2019 Junior Fair Beef Feeders Show was delayed slightly until 5 p.m. to allow organizers a chance to get the Sales Arena prepared. With eight classes competing, the competition was tough and took a few hours before Macie Riley won the Grand Champion Beef Feeder prize for 2019.
“I feel very blessed to get this,” Macie said. “This is my last year, so it’s really great and I am glad to make the most of it. (To the newer exhibitors), make every year count. Work with your steer from the day you get them, they are easier to show and easier to condition that way. You will grow a really good bond with them and it makes the project so much more fun that way.”
Following this announcement, the Riley family didn’t stop there as Madison Riley (Macie’s sister) was named the Reserve Champion Beef Feeder. The two would go on to also win third overall and fifth overall, totaling four beef feeders out of the top five. Unfortunately due to recent surgery, Madison was unable to personally show her beef feeder, but she sat in the crowd waiting as other helpful exhibitors showed off her hard work from this year.
Madison said it felt good to see her feeder be selected, and also took time to thank the exhibitors who showed the animal for her. Despite not being able to handle a beef feeder over the last month or so, Madison worked hard for months leading up to the fair, feeding, bathing and much more to grow her animal.
After the show portion of the event, the exhibitors moved on to showmanship. With only three classes, the competition was tight within each class. After another hour of showing, Natalie Lindsey was named the Overall Beef Feeder Showman.
Immediately following the beef feeder show was the 2019 Junior Fair Market Beef Steer Show with five classes. A small pool still made for fierce competition, and by the end fourth year exhibitor Caitlin Cottrill won the Grand Champion Beef Steer prize.
“I am just happy I got Grand Champion,” Cottrill said with tears in her eyes. “I worked all summer with lots of walking. He fed pretty good. All of the younger exhibitors did a great job this year.”
Close behind was Victoria Waits, who won the Reserve Champion Beef Steer.
“I really couldn’t do it without the support of my family,” Waits said. “This has always been a team thing, you just can’t do it with one person. You always need everyone. My mom has been a great help everyday out in the barn, my dad is an awesome man who works to support us and does anything to be there. My brother is one person I really want to thank, even though I can be extremely….un-nice to him, he is still always there with me, supporting me. I just really want him to know I thank him for everything.”
As the show was ending, showmanship was still left to complete and after a few tough contests Quinton Waits was named the Overall Beef Steer Showman. Due to rules for the Showman of Showmen competition, only one beef project would be allowed to continue onto Saturday’s contest. With one last class out of the way, the judge determined Natalie Lindsey to be the Overall Beef Showman and she will represent their industry at the competition.
“I just came out here and wanted to have fun,” Lindsey said. “I worked so hard this summer and to have this happen is just great. We will probably just keep this guy cooled off and calm for a couple of days. For all of the younger 4-Her’s, just keep working hard and it will pay off.”
Stay with the Record-Herald for more coverage of the 140th Fayette County Fair all this week July 15-20.
Reach Martin Graham at (740) 313-0351 or on Twitter @MartiTheNewsGuy.