Paige Klopfenstein holds tight to her Grand Champion Beef Steer as she walks it around the ring during the Auglaize County Fair Junior Fair Livestock Auction.
Hefty bids received for animals raised as projects for the fair make all the hard work worth it, several youth said after leaving the sales ring Friday.
Most also said they were putting the money in savings accounts or setting it aside for a large upcoming expected expense, including college or a car.
â€śWithout the bidders and their support it would be a lot harder to do,â€ť Zach Lagemin, 16, of New Knoxville, said after selling his dairy steer, Devil.
It was his fourth year showing and selling a steer at the Auglaize County Fair.
â€śI like showing them,â€ť Zach said. â€śThey can be harder because they are bigger than you, but itâ€™s worth it in the end.â€ť
To get Devil ready before he went up on the auction block Friday, Zach said he cleaned him, brushed him out and dressed him in his show halter. When it was their turn during the sale, Zach walked the steer in and set him up to make him look his best in the ring.
Money he made through the sale goes straight to the bank.
Parting with the steer isnâ€™t too hard, Zach said.
â€śI donâ€™t get too attached to start with,â€ť he said.
Emma Davis, 11, showed a steer for the first time this year at the Auglaize County Fair.
â€śItâ€™s kind of scary because you donâ€™t know what they are going to do,â€ť 80-pound Emma said of her 1,216-pound steer. â€śIâ€™ve never done this before.â€ť
She thought maybe the steer handled better with more people around.
â€śHe did really good in his show halter,â€ť Emma said. â€śIf he messed up, I yanked him hard.â€ť
Emma, of Wapakoneta, planned to put the money she earned through the sale in the bank.
Next year she plans to take another steer and a feeder calf.
Emma said seeing how much her cousins earned showing steer she wanted to give it a try, but admitted that she didnâ€™t know how much work was involved.
â€śIt was so worth it,â€ť Emma exclaimed after the sale.
She told of how she worked with him hard to get him ready before they ever came to the fair and the day of the sale she made sure he had plenty to drink, was brushed and calm. A white cow, he was especially hard to keep clean and Emma said it felt like she would scrub him forever to keep him that color.
â€śItâ€™s sort of hard, you sort of get attached,â€ť Emma said thinking of her steer being butchered, but she didnâ€™t anticipate any tears. â€śI just couldnâ€™t think I was eating him. I would have to make sure it wasnâ€™t the same meat.â€ť
Auglaize County Beef Princess Stephanie Albers, 15, of Minster, washed her steer, Chubs, off one last time before heading to the ring Saturday.
â€śItâ€™s a lot of hard work, especially Angus steer,â€ť Stephanie said. â€śIt takes a lot of dedication.â€ť
She said Angus cattle in particular are harder to train and groom. To prepare steer to show, they are washed and blown dry so their hair stands out.
After showing steer for five years, Stephanie said she has built up a good fund as she saves for college.
â€śI plan on doing it until I graduate,â€ť Stephanie said.
She thanked bidders for their support at the sale and of 4-H.
â€śItâ€™s really awesome,â€ť Stephanie said.
Poultry may not take the same muscle power as controlling a steer in the sales ring, but there are still tricks to keeping them calm.
Peyton Ford, 12, of Spencerville, said he just goes in, holds the chicken and smiles. How the chicken acts from there depends, but if he gets a little rowdy, Peyton sticks the chickenâ€™s head under his arm so it falls asleep.
Kennedy Rumer, 15, of Waynesfield, started taking goats because she was tired of rabbits.
â€śThey were boring,â€ť Kennedy said. â€śGoats are more exciting but a little more work..â€ť
She got Walker in May and began working with him at the same time her younger brother got his goat, Texas Ranger, and they worked with them every day.
As for his showing in the ring, Kennedy was nervous.
â€śMine never walks, he only follows the other goats,â€ť Kennedy said.
She, too, will add money she earns selling him to her bank account, but is allowed to spend $100.
Madison Ott, 12, of New Knoxville, sold her market rabbits for the third year on Friday. She took ribbons she won into the ring with her hoping when bidders saw the honors the rabbits would sell for more money.
Sheâ€™s allowed to spend $20 of what she earns with the rest going toward her college fund.
Madison said her sister took rabbits, which got her interested in them but they also seem like less work than larger animals.
â€śSometimes the rabbits are ornery, but as long as they donâ€™t jump off the table itâ€™s OK,â€ť Madison said of their behavior in the ring.
She said it can sometimes be hard to part with the rabbits but she tries to keep it in perspective and keep in mind where they are headed, naming them meat names. This year, Ham and Meatballs.
â€śI sent letters to invite potential buyers to the fair and the sale,â€ť Madison said of letters sent to those the family knows, buy feed from or do business with through the family farm.
Beside her rabbitsâ€™ cage hung a poster she made thanking last yearâ€™s buyers for their support.
Waynesfield brothers, Rex and Ryan Motter, both showed steer for 10 years at the Auglaize County Fair when they were growing up. Every year they come back out to the fair to support youth involved in 4-H and FFA through the livestock sale.
â€śTheir parents supported us and now weâ€™re supporting their kids,â€ť said Rex Motter, who bids on behalf of Motter Trucking.
His brother bids for the Sons of the American Legion in Waynesfield.
â€śItâ€™s a good educational tool,â€ť Rex Motter said of livestock projects. â€śThey learn about animals but also develop social skills and learn other valuable life lessons.â€ť
Jenny Riethman, who showed rabbits, hogs and steer for 10 years in 4-H and four years in FFA, now works for Farm Credit Services and comes out to the livestock sale to bid on animals.
â€śItâ€™s good to support our customers and their kids,â€ť Riethman said.
She said prior to the sale their received letters from showmen of a variety of animals asking them to come out and bid.
Jane Scheblo, who spoke prior to the sale as two scholarships in her daughter, Nikki Schaubâ€™s, name were presented to the Auglaize County Fair Queen Kayla Schneider and King Patrick Schwartz, said the thousands of dollars bidders will spend at the sale this weekend are done with no strings attached as a way to invest in the youthsâ€™ futures.
Steer, poultry, rabbits and goats sold at Fridayâ€™s Junior Fair Livestock Sale. Below are the bids for champion and reserve champion animals.
Champion Market Steer
â€˘Paige Klopfensteinâ€™s Champion Beef Steer sold for $11,650 to Minster Bank, MCC Capital, GA Wintzer, Community Market, S & S Volvo, Dr. Alvetro, Kroger, AG Boogher, Block Insurance of Wapakoneta and Waynesfield, Tim Meyers DDS, Dr. Tom Freytag, Acura Columbus, Buckeye Farm and Wapak Eagles 691.
â€˘ Elizabeth Heintzâ€™s Reserve Champion Beef Steer sold for $10,500 to JD Equipment, Ron Spencer, Earl and Becky Schaub and S & S Volvo.
â€˘ Lee Turnerâ€™s Champion Dairy Steer sold for $2,900 to Schaub Excavating, AG Boogher, S & S Volvo, Block Insurance and Bornhorst Printing.
â€˘ Drew Davisâ€™s Reserve Champion Dairy Steer sold for $2,800 to G.A. Wintzer and Son, Egbert Livestock, Millers Corral, S & S Volvo, Inn Between Tavern and Wapakoneta Young Farmers.
â€˘ Ben Loyerâ€™s Champion Carcass Steer sold for $900 to Potash Corporation, Harrod Insurance and Bambauer Fertilizer.
â€˘ Seth Stonerâ€™s Reserve Champion Carcass Steer sold for $1,650 to Farm Credit, Trupointe, RRR Tire, Whitney Painting, First National Bank, Alan Davis Insurance, Potast Inc., Merrimans, Millers Corral and Pioneer Dennis Crikes
Champion Market Poultry
â€˘ Jacob Vogelâ€™s Champion Market Pen sold for $1,200 to Potash Corporation, S & S Volvo and G.A. Wintzer.
â€˘ Noah Vogelâ€™s Reserve Champion Market Pet sold for $800 to G.A. Wintzer, S & S Volvo and Potash Corporation.
â€˘ John Craftâ€™s Champion Market Turkey Tom sold for $1,600 to Alan Davis Insurance, G.A. Wintzer, S & S Volvo, AG Boogher and Trupointe.
â€˘ Tyler Nowickiâ€™s Reserve Champion Market Turkey Tom sold for $1,200 to Wapak Eagles, Alan Davis Insurance, G.A. Wintzer, Kah Meats, S & S Volvo, AG Boogher and Trupointe.
â€˘ Tyler Nowickiâ€™s Champion Market Turkey Hen sold for $1,200 to Wapak Eagles, Alan Davis Insurance, G.A. Wintzer, Kahâ€™s Meat, S & S Volvo, AG Boogher, Trupointe and Joe Altherr.
â€˘ Braxton Roopâ€™s Reserve Champion Market Turkey Hen sold for $600 to Auglaize County Farm Bureau, Auglaize County Commissioner Don Regula, state Sen. Cliff Hite, state Rep. Robert Sprague and Setex.
â€˘ Brooklyn Plummerâ€™s Champion Market Pen sold for $1,000 to Wagner Door Company, G.A. Wintzer and Son, S & S Volvo, Alan Davis Insurance,and Joe Altherr.
â€˘ Courtney Hoelscherâ€™s Reserve Champion Market Pen sold for $950 to Miltner Law, First National Bank, New Bremen Sunoco, St. Marys Marathon, Village Market, Bornhorst Printing, Pennington Gas, Piehl Brothers Stone and Burton Ride Company.
Champion Goat Wether
â€˘ C.J. Steinkeâ€™s Champion Boer Market Goat sold for $1,000 to S & S Volvo, Alan Davis Insurance, Millers Corral, Husky Lima Refinery, Mikeâ€™s Barn and Yard and RRR Tire.
â€˘ C.J. Steinkeâ€™s Reserve Champion Boer Market Goat sold for $800 to S & S Volvo.
â€˘ Shannon Fledderjohannâ€™s Champion Dairy Market Goat sold for $1,300 to Jene Topp, Jeff Topp, John Frische, Miltner Law, Precision Agribusiness, First National Bank of New Bremen, Dewdrop Farm and Bobcat of Lima.
â€˘ Madelynn Hefnerâ€™s Reserve Champion Dairy Market Goat sold for $1,500 to G.A. Wintzers, Steinke Concrete, Huelskamp Farms, RRR Tire, Jim Egbert, Schmerge Show Pigs, Provico Show Supplies, S & S Volvo, Crop Production Services, John Frische, CC Propane and Buckeye Farm Antiques.