NEW CASTLE, Pa. – Despite the 90 degree weather and an afternoon downpour, buyers still made it out support the Lawrence County livestock sale.
Sales totals keep creeping up year-by-year, thanks to Lawrence County’s annual supporters.
Robert Thomas with Pizzas by Marchelloni walked away from Saturday’s Lawrence County livestock sale with three grand champions.
Hogs. Kayla Beatty’s has already started a winning streak in her second year of showing hogs. Last year, she won reserve champion and this year she raised the bar, showing the grand champion hog.
Her 273-pound Hampshire hog sold to Pizzas by Marchelloni for $4 a pound, $2 short of last year’s grand champion.
Omega Inc. bought Justin Martin’s 235-pound reserve champion hog for $4.30 a pound.
Lawrence County Fair queen Shawna Mitcheltree sold her grand champion hog carcass to high bidder Grassy Crest Farms Inc. for $4.50 a pound.
Auctioneer Duke Whiting bought Ethan McAnlis’ reserve champion hog carcass for $2.70 a pound.
The 128 hogs averaged $2.09 a pound with champions and $2.05, without.
Market rabbits. Rabbits were next on the auction block, and 12 pens of rabbits averaged $17.20 a pound with champions and $15.23 without.
This year’s averages were up almost $4 from last year’s $13.23 with-champions average.
Tashenna Michael sold her grand champion rabbit pen to Matt Mangino for $25 a pound, $8 more than last year’s grand champion pen.
Auctioneer Dale Cunningham paid $27.50 a pound for the reserve champion rabbit pen raised by Marty Barletto, his grandson.
The reserve champion rabbit pen jumped in price from 2004 by $19 a pound.
Market goats. Marybeth Schaub’s 74-pound grand champion market goat sold for $7 a pound to Krauss Portable Welding.
Tractor Supply in Hermitage, Pa., bought Terri Wilson’s 85-pound reserve champion market goat for $5.50 a pound.
The 14 goats averaged $3.34 a pound with champions and $2.83 without.
Goat sales were up this year, as last year’s 14 goats averaged $2.94 a pound.
Double time. Josh Kwolek claims the years of breeding his own lambs and hard work finally paid off.
In his sixth year showing lambs, he finally won big, showing both grand and reserve market lambs.
Pizzas by Marchelloni bought his grand champion 123-pound lamb for $6 a pound, $2 less than last year’s grand champion.
Kwolek sold his 126-pound reserve champion lamb for $3.75 to Gateway Farm Freezer.
Lindsey Beatty repeated last year, winning grand champion lamb carcass. The 74-pound lamb carcass sold for $6.50 to high bidder Jeff McKissick, veterinarian.
GWS Trucking and the Stickle and Hufnagel families bought Daniel Byers’ reserve champion 62-pound lamb carcass for $8 a pound, breaking the record set in 2002 of $7.50.
The 58 lambs sold for $21,819, averaging $3.37 a pound with champions and $3.31 without.
Steers. Joshua Miller has shown steers for seven years, he said. After learning how to pick the best steer out of a lot and with help from his brothers, he finally took home the top honor.
Pizzas by Marchelloni bought its third grand champion of the day, buying Miller’s 1,254-pound grand champion steer for $3.10 a pound.
Matt Drobezko’s 1,327-pound reserve champion steer sold for $2 a pound to Hoss’s Steak and Seafood House.
The 736-pound grand champion steer carcass was raised by Travis Book and sold to Protech Asphalt for $2.25 a pound.
Don and Edy Hoye matched the grand champion steer carcass price, buying Elizabeth Rodger’s 803-pound reserve carcass steer for $2.25 a pound.
The 51 steers averaged $1.34 a pound with champions, and $1.29 without.
This year’s steer sale again jumped above last year’s averages of $1.29 with champions.
Cheese. The Beatty family swept the cheese sale this year, with Lindsey Beatty winning champion cheese yield and Thomas Beatty taking home reserve champion cheese yield.
The 16 cheese lots sold for $7,175.
Raising funds. The Lawrence County hog and lamb committee has been working for more than a year to raise funds for new pens.
During Saturday’s sale, 17 woodcarvings by Rick Cox were auctioned off, with 40 percent of the proceeds going to the hog and lamb pen fund.
The woodcarvings sold for a total of $5,965, averaging $350.88 per carving.
The chain saw artist from Edinburg, Pa., Cox, has been to five other fairs this summer, selling his work and donating a portion of the money back to the fair.
The overall livestock sale total was $170,807, almost $2,000 more than last year’s total.
Auctioneers volunteering their time and services include; Lloyd Braham, Don Braham, Mark Cunningham, Beth Hillmar and Duke Whiting.