We have showed cattle for fun since I was about 10 years old. I was halter breaking calves before that. As a kid, dad gave my sister and I a bull calf to take care of one summer. We were to feed and care for it until August, then it would be sold, and the money we got would be for my sister and I to buy a bike.
Dad usually sold the bull calves at a few days to a couple weeks old. When he had a few he would call the trucker and they came to get them. When dad told us we got to keep one to raise bigger, we got pretty excited! Oh, the memories!
The shiny ‘Barbie Bike’ was super exciting as we were of the age to learn how to ride one. Then the haltering and dragging our calf around was second to the fun we had for years with our bikes.
I discovered 4-H at about age 10, and the idea of showing a calf was simply irresistible! While my first years were a great learning curve, they also opened the window to my future.
fast forward 15 years…
My own kids 2-7 years old, were getting involved too! But in a whole new realm, showing beef cattle.
We showed what we raised, and didn’t go buy a calf from someone else. While I understand some people don’t want to have animals all the time, it’s a foreign idea to me to compete with something I didn’t raise.
We have had so much fun showing, the list of National Champion’s grows annually. We don’t get into show fitting, or show feeding, we don’t keep animals in a cooler, or even wash them daily. We don’t take it that seriously. But we seriously have fun!
I can thank my 4-H club friends for that! While we competed against each other in softball, and share-the-fun performances, we all played together, and learned from each other. If it was serious competition from the adults perspective, we didn’t know it. The “big kids” showed the “little kids, and the new kids” how to handle, fit, and show. We didn’t care what the adults said about it, we all learned together. We gave each other a high five when one calf won. the next show it might be someone else in first place.
My own kids were involved when there wasn’t a lot of kids showing beef in our local fair, but the interest was there. They become the mentors, and the pay-it-forward attitude Karen taught me all those years ago is still alive today.
Before my post turns to a photo gallery, I wanted you to know the why before we get to the how. I know each and every animal we have shown over the years has earned their supreme awards. The industry will always need great cattle. I have never selected based on the “trends”. We have only represented cattle that are the most efficient and functional type. While judges follow the trends, they always comment on how ‘cattle like these are the type that often aren’t shown, they are simply too good of cattle to take off the place’.
These are a few of the many we have shown. Join our show team! It’s all about the FUN!