An awesome night at Ashtabula County Fair

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JEFFERSON, Ohio – When the Ashtabula County Fair junior livestock sale ended Aug. 10, half of its records had crumbled. Buyers and exhibitors sailed past the all-time high bids in seven categories, making it one of the county’s most profitable sales ever.
The sale brought in $185,827.63 this year, besting the 2006 sale by more than $18,000 and topping all the Ashtabula County Fair sales that Farm and Dairy has on record.
Hogs. Ashley Claypool’s 137-pound best of show carcass hog brought $8.50 per pound from Gary Toohig. The previous record, $5 per pound, was set last year.
The 161-pound reserve best of show carcass hog, exhibited by Anthony Smith, went to The Birdfeeder for $3.50 per pound.
Ten carcass hogs brought $5,436.85, averaging $3.33 with champions and $2.66 without.
In the live hog sale, Brooke Lautanen took grand champion exhibitor honors with her 213-pound hog. The animal sold to Thorne’s BiLo Supermarket for $7 per pound.
The reserve champion exhibitor, Ben Beckwith, sold his 219-pound hog to Geneva Giant Eagle for $3.30 per pound.
The best of show banner went to Breanna Clay. Clay’s Farm purchased her 278-pound hog for $4 per pound. Nichole Visnosky’s 307-pound reserve best of show hog brought $1.80 per pound from O & P Oil and Gas.
Eighty hogs added $34,956.70 to the sale, averaging $1.85 per pound with champions and $1.74 without.
Best of show animals are the top two animals in any species (traditionally called grand and reserve champion). Champion exhibitor awards are given based on skillathon scores, showmanship results and the animal’s conformation.
Goat glory. The winning bid for Kayla Stoltz’s 68-pound best of show market goat broke a five-year record. C. Hamm and Associates bought the animal for $10 per pound. The previous record was $6.75 per pound.
Stoltz also earned the grand champion exhibitor award.
Kayla Beckwith was the reserve champion exhibitor, selling her 63-pound market goat for $5.50 per pound to CW Brooks Trucking and Ed’s Kids Pet Supplies.
Austin O’Baker’s 79-pound reserve best of show market goat brought $2.50 per pound from Marous Farm.
Twelve market goats added $2,473 to the sale, averaging $2.92 per pound with champions and $1.89 without.
Cattle call. C. Hamm and Associates set another record-breaking bid during the market steer sale. The company paid $5.25 per pound for Brandi Clay’s 1,275-pound best of show steer. The previous record was $4.60 per pound, set in 2005.
Brandi also earned grand champion exhibitor honors.
Tricia Lautanen took the reserve best of show and reserve champion exhibitor banners. Lautanen Trucking and Farms bought her 1,350-pound steer for $2.60 per pound.
Forty steers brought $72,059.60, averaging $1.45 per pound with champions and $1.31 without.
Aaron Flavell’s 392-pound best of show beef carcass (half hanging) went to Ray Brothers Inc. for $2.40 per pound. Capp Steel paid $2.60 per pound for Blake Jerome’s 383-pound reserve best of show beef carcass (half hanging).
Six beef carcasses brought $5,686.80, averaging $2.62 per pound with champions and $2.68 without.
Not to be outdone by the larger beef projects, the beef feeder exhibitors set some records of their own.
Keston Schwotzer, the grand champion exhibitor, sold his 492-pound calf to B.P. Enterprise for $2.75 per pound. The previous record, $2.25 per pound, was set last year.
Reserve champion exhibitor Raquel Mook got $1.40 per pound from Ryan Heating, Cooling and Plumbing for her 490-pound beef feeder.
Nicole Richards’ 600-pound best of show entry brought $2.10 per pound from Deer Haven Farms. The reserve best of show animal, owned by Joshua Kearny, sold to Ashtabula Auto Sales for $2.30 per pound.
Six beef feeders brought $6,626.30, averaging $2.07 per pound with champions and $1.93 without.
The dairy steers also held their own in the cattle sale.
Grand champion exhibitor Kyle Hass sold his 1,160-pound best of show dairy steer for a record-breaking $2 per pound. RNJ Trucking bought the animal, topping the previous record bid by 75 cents.
Wendy and Brian Hill purchased the dairy steer raised by reserve champion exhibitor James Francis. The Hills paid $1.20 per pound for Francis’ 1,245-pound entry.
Adam Sturgill’s 1,245-pound reserve best of show dairy steer went to Walter and Michal Barnes for $1 per pound.
Ten dairy steers added $12,811.25 to the sale, averaging $1.03 per pound with champions and 87 cents per pound without.
No best of show award was given in the dairy beef carcass division. But three dairy beef carcasses were sold, adding $2,535.40 to the sale total. The carcasses averaged $2.23 per pound.
Turkey trot. Records in the market turkey sale also moved up a bit this year. Evan Gruskiewicz, grand champion exhibitor, earned $31 per pound for his 34-pound bird. Ryan Heating, Cooling and Plumbing bought the turkey, beating out last year’s record bid by $2 per pound.
Katie Beals took home reserve champion exhibitor and reserve best of show honors. Her 29-pound bird brought $10 per pound from George Tatalovich.
Michael Montello’s 36-pound best of show turkey went to Jefferson Subway for $7 per pound.
Fourteen turkeys brought $4,068. The average price was $10.43 per pound with champions and $8.91 without.
Rounding out the record-breaking sales was Bailee Mazzaro’s cheese basket. Her entry brought $1,450 from Countryside Vet Clinic, Tony Struna and Nick Mazzaro. The old record was set two years ago $1,200.
Sarah Sundberg’s best of show cheese basket went to the Ashtabula Holstein Club for $510.
Five baskets of cheese brought $4,285, averaging $857 with the champion and $943.75 without.
Lambs. Samantha Benton took grand champion exhibitor honors with her 127-pound reserve best of show lamb. Thorne’s BiLo Supermarket bought the animal for $2.80 per pound.
The reserve champion exhibitor, Evan Schwarz, sold his 115-pound lamb to MIdway Pontiac for $2.30 per pound.
Ashley Meadows’ 111-pound best of show lamb brought $2.10 per pound from Ashtabula Auto Sales.
Seven lambs brought $1,985.20, averaging $2.44 per pound with champions and $2.48 without.
No best of show award was given in the lamb carcass division. But four lamb carcasses were sold, bringing $1,038.60 and averaging $4.08 per pound.
Dairy beef feeders. Jesse Dean earned the grand champion exhibitor and best of show banners with her 644-pound dairy beef feeder. Weaver Trucking bought the calf for $1.20 per pound.
Reserve champion exhibitor honors went to Rachel Clayton. Smolen Engineering bought her 472-pound beef feeder for $1.40 per pound.
The 618-pound reserve best of show calf, owned by Rick Whittington, brought a bid of $1.25 per pound from Marous Farm.
Forty dairy beef feeders added $30,013.35 to the sale. The calves averaged $1.27 per pound with champions and $1.26 per pound without.
Small animals. In the small animal sale, grand champion exhibitor Jennifer Hall sold her 16.68-pound pen of market chickens for $18 per pound. Vanderhoof Woodworks purchased the pen.
George Tatalovich bought the pen of chickens raised by reserve champion exhibitor Jenny Beals. Tatalovich paid $9 per pound for Beals’ 19.22-pound pen.
Michael Miller’s best of show chickens weighed 20.93 pounds. Colucci’s Fattoria bought the pen for $9 per pound.
Douglas Richards’ 19.39-pound reserve best of show chickens brought $6 per pound from Ashtabula Auto Sales.
Seven pens of market chickens brought $1,244.20, averaging $9.57 per pound with champions and $7.33 per pound without.
Mason Taylor claimed grand champion exhibitor and best of show honors with his 14.57-pound pen of market rabbits. Pymatuning Valley FFA bought the rabbits for $10 per pound.
Reserve champion exhibitor Kay Weinrich also got $10 per pound from Northeast Ohio Rabbit Fanciers for her 11.89-pound pen of rabbits.
Saybrook Feed and Garden paid $7 per pound for Ben Betteridge’s 13.93-pound, reserve best of show pen.
Six pens of rabbits added $607.38 to the sale. The average price was $7.67 per pound with champions and $5.50 without.
Auctioneers who donated their time at the sale included Mike Davis, John Erdel and Tim Hunt.
(Reporter Janelle Skrinjar welcomes feedback by phone at 800-837-3419, ext. 22, or by e-mail at jskrinjar@farmanddairy.com.)

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