Pennsylvania: Pa. Jersey breeders gather for annual meeting

WILLIAMSPORT, Pa. —  The Pennsylvania Jersey Cattle Association held its annual meeting March 28-29 in Williamsport, Pa.
Jersey breeders from all over the state gathered to celebrate the breed and Pa. Jersey youth, as well as those breeders who achieved high levels of success throughout the past year.

The weekend began with a PJCA directors’ meeting where the board of directors discussed the future of the association. The rest of the afternoon was spent watching Pennsylvania Jersey youth compete in the speech contest and the dairy jeopardy contest, coordinated by the Penn State Dairy Science Club.

Winners for each contest are as follows:

Speech Contest; Jr. Division:

1. Olivia Lesher; 2. Maggie Whitenight; 3. Katelyn Taylor.

Intermediate Division:

1. Sawyer Whitenight; 2. Mason Davis

Senior Division:

1. Maria Jo Noble; 2. Jaylene Lesher

Dairy Jeopardy Contest: Junior Division:

1. Caroline Arrowsmith; 2. Katelyn Taylor; 3. Nicole Arrowsmith.

Sr. Division:

1. Jaylene Lesher; 2. Sawyer Whitenight

Winners

Winners for the speech and jeopardy contests were celebrated at the banquet along with all the other youth winners of the weekend.
First place scrapbook was awarded to Katelyn Taylor, while the 2013 First Year Award was given to Nicole Arrowsmith.
The Junior Achievement Award was awarded to Caroline Arrowsmith and the Senior Achievement Award to Maria Jo Noble, who will also be applying for the National Achievement contest.

Scholarships

This year, two PJCA scholarships were awarded to Austin Acel and Jennifer Groff.
Lastly, Jaylene Lesher the 2013 PA Jersey Queen passed her crown to the 2014 Pennsylvania Jersey Queen Maria Jo Noble of Gillett, Pa.

Jacob M. Brunges Production Contest:

1. Jessica Nolt, E lsbree Marshall Arkansas 1-11 305D 25,845M 1,024F 809P 1,019 m.e. Protein.; 2. Emily Cooper, Cambell Run I Brandi 3-08 305D 25,196M 1,071F 944P 972 m.e. Protein.

Breeders

The banquet held March 29 was dedicated to the breeders. The first award of the morning was the Norman Genetic Award, the longest running state Jersey genetic award in the country. This year’s award was earned by Spruce Row Farm and the Peters family of Meadville, Pa. This was Spruce Row Farm’s third year to accept the award.

Awards

Also this year, the PJCA awarded two Distinguished Service Awards. Roy Watson, of Troy, Pa. was the first honoree. As a past Jersey breeder, Watson was active within the association. He was a past president, the chair of several Pennsylvania sales and a big asset to the association, breed, and industry.

The second service award was presented to Bill and Sally Eick, of Columbia Cross Roads, Pa. The Eicks have been long-time Jersey breeders until they sold the herd just a few years ago. They were multiple year winners of the Norman Genetic Award as the highest JPI nationally ranked herd from Pennsylvania.

Young Jersey breeder

The PJCA also awarded the first Pennsylvania Young Jersey Breeder Award in a few years.

The honor was awarded to Adam and Kelly Vance of Cotton Spring Farm in Alverton, Pa. The Vances were also awarded this year’s National Young Jersey Breeder Award.

PJCA vice president Ryan Clark and his wife, Jen, of Tyrone, Pa. also received the National Award.

Lactation awards

Lastly, yearly lactation awards were presented to the owners of the top cow in each age category as well as high placing Pennsylvania herds.
The title of the highest Pennsylvania Protein Jersey was awarded to Vanfel Laser 640 owned by Vanderfeltz Jerseys of Susquehanna County with 1162 pounds of protein.

The Pennsylvania herd with the highest protein average goes to David Myers, of Cambria County, with 19 cows averaging 766 pounds of protein.

The board of directors announced it will be paying the registration fees for the top placing youth from the speech and dairy jeopardy contests to the national Jersey meeting in Alexandria, Va. in June.

There have also been changes made to the youth Louisville trip, which the association sponsors every November.
Pennsylvania Jersey youth will now be able to sign up their animals for the trip instead of having to qualify, providing they are willing to meet the guidelines set in place.

Lastly, the Pennsylvania Jersey Association will be putting in a bid to host a national Jersey meeting in Gettysburg in 2017.
The 2015 PJCA state meeting will be held in Gettysburg, Pa.

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