Months of preparing and nurturing animals for this year’s Churchill County Livestock Show and Sale fetches rewards and satisfaction for the 4-H and FFA students who participate in the three-day event.
Owen Fabel is one such exhibitor who looks forward to each year’s show at the fairgrounds.
“I really like a lot of the fun and the education,” said Fabel, member of the Hot Wings 4-H club.
While many youthful exhibitors prefer different animals to show, Fabel said he enjoys working with poultry.
“I like the chickens,” he said. “Selling eggs pays for themselves, and it’s easier to keep and have more (chickens) at the same time,” the 12-year-old said.
On the other hand, Nicole Nelson said she loves to show chickens and swine despite one of her pigs who doesn’t like mud.
Beginning yesterday, Jackie Bogdanowicz said potential buyers may take additional time to talk to the students about their animals and learn more about the animal’s history
Bogdanowicz, a conservation specialist with the Lahontan and Stillwater Conservation Districts and a tireless worker with the 4-H program along with her mother, Karen, said Thursday was spent for the children to show their animals — lamb, beef, goat, swine and dairy cows — used for breeding, and today, they will show animals that have been raised primarily for meat.
Bogdanowicz said buyers save money when purchasing an animal at the auction, which is Saturday at 1 p.m. After processing, for example, she said a steer could be as high as $1,000 based on $1.50 per pound on the purchase price. The yield could result in more than 500 pounds of steak, roast and hamburger.
Bogdanowicz said during the show, judges grade the students for their showmanship with overall winners in each livestock category announced on Saturday.
Beginning at 9 a.m. today, the 4-H and FFA students will show their market swine, lamb, goat and beef, and after a short break, Bogdanowicz said they will then enter the showmanship phase for the same five types of livestock.
Exhibitors had another pleasant surprise once they arrived at the fairgrounds.
“Jim Sustacha (retired high-school ag teacher) had done a lot of work on the panels and pens for the livestock,” Bogdanowicz said. “Different families and business have sponsored each panel.”
Bogdanowicz said the showing area had many old panels, and exhibitors were running out of room.
“He took it on himself, and the community has been very supportive,” Bogdanowicz said of Sustacha.
Quality and showmanship for poultry also begins at 9 a.m. followed by quality for rabbits at 10 a.m. and showmanship at 1 p.m.
A complete round ribbon begins at 9 a.m. on Saturday, and Bogdanowicz said the auction wraps up the afternoon.
Natasha Emke said she has been nervous preparing and waiting for this year’s annual show. She said this is the first year she has worked with chickens.
“I’ve been in 4-H for two years, and I showed a rabbit,” she said “It was good.”
Karen Bogdanowicz, a 4-H community-based instructor, said the annual livestock show and sale allows the students to practice skills in management, decision-making and project evaluation.