McConaughey receives hall of fame award from Pa. livestock association

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HARRISBURG, Pa. – Clyde W. McConaughey Jr. of Indiana County, Pa., was honored with the Pennsylvania Livestock Association’s Hall of Fame award at the 48th Keystone International Livestock Exposition.
KILE was held at the Farm Show Complex in Harrisburg, Sept. 28-Oct. 4.
‘We’ attitude. McConaughey’s resistance to taking all the credit for this honor is apparent in his ‘we’ attitude.
“Winning the award is a great honor,” McConaughey said. “We definitely appreciate it, and it was definitely a surprise.”
Clyde McConaughey has farmed all his life in Northern Indiana County near Punxsutawney where he raised hogs, dairy cattle, sheep and crops.
He went into partnership with his father when he graduated from high school and bought his first farm five years later.
First showing. He exhibited at the first Keystone International Livestock Exposition in 1956, where he showed four head of Duroc hogs. With those four pigs (three gilts and a boar) he won champion gilt, and first places in the get of sire, produce of dam and breeder’s young herd classes.
He has exhibited at KILE every year since, with the exception of a couple of years due to health problems in the family, including showing Duroc and Hampshire hogs at this year’s show.
His farm, Mahoning Creek Farms, has won the premier exhibitor award in Durocs or Hampshire for many years, along with numerous breed champions.
Tradition. McConaughey has been a long time exhibitor at the Pennsylvania Farm Show, including many champions, with the family exhibiting consecutively since 1938 and missing only the war years and the year that no hogs were shown at the Farm Show because of quarantines.
Involvement in the Farm Show included exhibiting Jersey cattle, Duroc, Hampshire and Yorkshire hogs.
His daughters also exhibited Chester White hogs and sheep of various breeds.
A long time. McConaughey noted several reasons why he has exhibited at KILE for so long: to visit with exhibitors from other states, to promote and advertise his farm, and to sell his animals.
He deemed the success of his farm to the efforts of both family and friends.
“Without the kids, we wouldn’t have been able to put it [the farm] together and keep it there,” he said.
McConaughey has served as state director of both the Duroc and Hampshire breed associations and received the American Farmer Degree from the FFA.
The McConaughey family received Pennsylvania’s first Outstanding Farm Show Family award in 1980.
Activities. Clyde McConaughey is active at the county level and was a member of the Indiana County Extension Executive Committee. He is currently a corporate member of the Indiana County Fair Association.
He helped organize and has been a continuous member of the Indiana County Livestock Sale Committee, which initiated the junior livestock sale at the Indiana County Fair.
McConaughey is still very active in that work and the sale has been held annually, 2004 being the 42nd sale.
Showmanship. Clyde and Lois McConaughey, in conjunction with Clayton and Margaret Winebark and their families, initiated the 4-H & FFA Premier Showmanship Contest at the Indiana County Fair in 1984. It continues to be a highlight of the week’s agricultural events with standing room only spectator crowds.
Champion showmen contests (from each of the species) compete for the supreme prize by showing dairy cattle, horses, sheep, beef cattle, swine and goats.
The winner receives a savings bond and other prizes recognizing their all-around showmanship ability. In 2004 the 20th Indiana County Fair Premier Showmanship Award was presented.
This year. The McConaughey’s exhibited four Duroc and two Hampshire hogs at KILE this year.
Mahoning Creek Farms continues to be a source of breeding stock and project animals for customers from a broad geographical area.
McConaughey has a reputation for being honest and up front when selling livestock and “making things right” if there is a problem.
Many of his customers have done business with him for several years because they know they can depend on the product he sells.
His main goal is to sell breeding stock for commercial and purebred producers. He focuses on genetics and productivity for customers to produce quality pork and breeding stock.
Encouragement. McConaughey is an avid encourager of young people and is always willing to provide advice and assistance to those just starting out.
No question is too dumb, and he will often make a visit to the family to check in, provide follow-up to their questions and provide assistance where needed to ensure a successful 4-H or FFA project.
He particularly likes to help those young people who are starting breeding projects.
He has great skill in figuring out how to fix up almost any facility for use with livestock and to make do with little or nothing when it comes to helping a family strategize about how to start a child with a livestock project.
Personality. Clyde has decreased the size of his farm from over 500 acres to 200 acres in North Mahoning Township, where he lives with his wife of nearly 50 years, Lois.
Their family includes three daughters: Donna and her husband, Delmer Truesdell in Massachusetts; Denise and husband, Charles McClellan in Maryland; and Darlene and husband, Robert Livingston in Seven Valleys, Pa.; and five grandchildren.

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