JEFFERSON, Ohio – Once again, buyers showed overwhelming support for Ashtabula County 4-H’ers, packing the MAC Arena in Jefferson Aug. 12 for the Ashtabula County junior fair market animal sale and shattering six records.
The sale ended shortly after midnight, with the youth raking in a sales total of $168,674.04, a new record and $14,496.39 more than last year’s record sale total.
Two-hundred and forty-eight exhibits were sold, up 24 head from last year.
Many longtime supporters of 4-H were present, including Plasticolors Inc., which purchased five hogs, five steers and one beef carcass.
Plasticolors has found a way to support 4-H and give a discount to its employees.
Pat Stitt, buyer for Plasticolors, said she sends out a memo to the company’s employees, asking them to let her know if they’d like to purchase either a whole or half of a hog or steer.
Stitt then attends the auction and bids on the animals. The employees pay the price-per-pound at the hanging weight, and Plasticolors picks up the difference between the hanging weight and the on-the-hoof price.
Cheese records. Two exhibitors set new cheese basket records, bringing in $1,200 each.
Lee Orahood’s best of show cheese basket sold to Al’s Trucking and Excavating, and Horizon Elastomeric matched the new record when it paid $1,200 for Lindsey Zaebst’s fourth-place basket.
Zaebst’s basket set last year’s record of $1,150.
Four baskets, plus a resale, averaged $750 with champions and $637.50 without. Total sales equaled $3,750.
Champions. The Ashtabula County Fair recognizes both the top two animals and the top two junior fair exhibitors of each species.
The exhibitor’s scores in the skill-a-thon and showmanship and the score on the market animal itself determine the top two exhibitors.
Ashtabula County put this system into effect when a buyers’ survey in 1997 revealed buyers purchase animals at the sale to reward the exhibitors, not the animal.
Turkey. C. Hamm and Associates paid $12 a pound for grand champion exhibitor Evan Gruskiewicz’s 32-pound reserve best of show turkey.
Gruskiewicz was last year’s reserve champion.
The best turkey price of the day, however, went to reserve champion exhibitor Evan Wolf. Realty One paid $19 a pound for his 36-pound turkey.
Saybrook Feed and Garden bought Nicholas Benton’s 36-pound best of show turkey for $9.25 a pound.
With 16 projects, the turkey sale totaled $3,192.00 with an average price of $5.95 a pound with champions and $4.34 without.
Chicken pens. A new record was set for the chicken meat pens when C. Hamm and Associates bought grand champion exhibitor Dustin Wolf’s 12.25-pound pen for $37 a pound.
Wolf broke his own grand champion record made last year of $32.50.
Reserve champion exhibitor James Anderson received $15 a pound from Chapman’s Food Service for his 11.50-pound reserve best of show chickens.
With five projects, up three from last year, the chicken meat pen sale totaled $969. The average price with champions was $18.80 a pound; the average price without was $14.
Rabbits. Betty Ann Peterson bought grand champion exhibitor Michael Anderson Jr.’s 13.75-pound best of show meat rabbits for $15.50 a pound.
This price was well below last year’s record of $47.50 a pound, which also went to Anderson.
Reserve champion exhibitor Cassie Swango received $15 a pound from Chapman’s Food Service for her 14.25-pound meat rabbits.
The 10.75-pound reserve best of show rabbits, exhibited by Richelle Baker, sold to Northeast Ohio Rabbit Fanciers for $15.50 a pound.
Four rabbit pens totaled $697.99, averaging $13.88 a pound with champions and $9.50 without.
Goats. Last year’s grand champion exhibitor Kendra Gerner won again this year, selling her 82-pound best of show goat for $3 a pound to CW Brooks Trucking.
CW Brooks Trucking also paid $3 a pound for reserve champion exhibitor Sasha Gerner’s 64-pound goat.
Ben Betteridge received $3.50 a pound from John and Bonnie Miller for his 67-pound reserve best of show goat.
The average price of goats fell from last year, going from an average price with champions of $2.97 a pound, to a price of $2.21.
The average price without champions was $1.89 a pound and sales totaled $1,790.50.
Beef feeders. Nine beef feeders sold for $5,584.90, with prices averaging $1.32 with champions and $1.19 without.
Grand champion exhibitor Raquel Mook’s 508-pound reserve best of show beef feeder sold for $1.30 a pound to Ray Brothers, Inc. Mook was also last year’s champion.
Ryan Heating and Cooling purchased reserve champion exhibitor Jason Fink’s 462-pound beef feeder for $1.65 a pound.
Brian Stackhouse received a record-setting $1.75 a pound for his 439-pound best of show beef feeder from Orwell Supply.
Lambs. Thorne’s Bilo continued its streak of buying the lamb belonging to the grand champion exhibitor.
This year the honor went to Matthew Bogue, whose 139-pound reserve best of show market lamb sold for $3.60 a pound.
The reserve champion exhibitor honor went to Danny Bogue, whose 122-pound market lamb sold for $2.70 a pound to Midway Pontiac, Chevrolet and Buick.
The 133-pound best of show market lamb owned by Samantha Benton sold for $2.50 a pound to REO Trucking.
Eleven projects totaled $2,650.90. Average price with champions was $2 a pound, and $1.65 without.
Five lamb carcasses added $947.40 to the total.
Michael Anderson Jr.’s 59-pound best of show lamb carcass sold for $3.30 a pound to Green Side Up Landscape and Construction.
Kyle Wright received $2.60 a pound for his 77-pound reserve best of show lamb carcass from Reiter Insurance and Financial Services.
Hogs. The 95 hogs sold for $44,052,50, averaging $1.76 a pound with champions and $1.72 without.
Erica Reiter nabbed top exhibitor for the fifth year, and Bilo purchased her 252-pound hog for $3.75 a pound.
Reserve champion exhibitor Chloe Olszak received $2.75 a pound from New Wilmington Livestock Auction for her 259-pound market hog.
Ray Brothers, Inc., paid $2.10 a pound for Evan Pilson’s 284-pound best of show hog.
Geneva Giant Eagle picked up Ashley Meaney’s 285-pound reserve best of show hog, paying $2 a pound.
Five hog carcasses sold for $1,587.
C.R. Noble Insurance Agency paid $2.20 a pound for Desirae Hill’s 178-pound best of show hog carcass, and the Bird Feeder paid $1.75 a pound for Eric Hawk’s 212-pound reserve best of show hog carcass.
Co-champs. Two exhibitors were named grand champion exhibitor with their dairy beef feeder this year.
Northside Farms took home co-grand champion exhibitor Terry Woodin’s 786-pound dairy beef feeder for $1.25 a pound.
Cortland Tractor Sales grabbed the other champion, paying $1.35 a pound for co-grand champion exhibitor Jessica Krulic’s 568-pound dairy beef feeder.
Reserve champion honors went to Brittni Clayton, who received $1.25 a pound for her 405-pound animal from Marous Farms Ent. Inc.
Orwell Electric Maintenance bought the 654-pound best of show dairy beef feeder, exhibited by Sheneese Summers for $1.30 a pound.
Thirty dairy beef feeders, totaled $20,355.65 in sales, averaging $1.18 with champions and $1.16 without.
Steers bidding war. A bidding war erupted between Clemson Towing and Thorne’s Bilo over grand champion exhibitor Jeff Jackson’s 1,375-pound best of show steer.
He also won the County Pride and Breeder’s Own awards.
Clemson Towing emerged victorious, paying a record $4.60 a pound, 60 cents over the record set in 1994.
Thorne’s Bilo quickly snatched up reserve champion exhibitor Dustin Brown’s 1,390-pound market steer for $1.80 a pound.
Tricia Lautanen’s 1,295-pound reserve best of show steer received $1.60 a pound from Lautanen Trucking.
Forty steers, down six from last year, sold for $69,516.45, averaging $1.41 with champions and $1.31 without.
Scott Johnson’s 355-pound best of show beef carcass sold for $4.55 a pound to New Wilmington Livestock Auction, and Chad Steven’s 345-pound reserve best of show carcass went to Walter and Michal Barnes for $3.20 a pound.
Five beef carcasses added $6,072.25 to the sale total.
New dairy project. The dairy steers, a new project at the fair this year, were the last to sell around midnight.
With seven projects, sales totaled $7,507.50, averaging 98 cents a pound with champions and 88 cents a pound, without.
Lisko Amusements purchased the best of show dairy steer, exhibited by grand champion exhibitor Courtney Fox, for $1.20 a pound.
RNJ Trucking paid $1.25 a pound for reserve champion exhibitor Kyle Hass’ 1,270-pound dairy steer.
Jim and Seanna Butler picked up the last champion of the day. They paid 90 cents a pound for Mich Pauley’s 1,040-pound reserve best of show dairy steer.
Volunteer auctioneers at the sale were Charlie Brewster, Allen Burhenne, Bob Fink, Gary Heaven and Tim Hunt.
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