CORTLAND, Ohio – Visions of stacking a freezer full of fresh meat filled their heads.
It may have not been so much the meat they were thinking about: It’s likely buyers at the Trumbull County Fair were trying to imagine icy cold blasts from the freezer to stop their sweating during the sale July 15.
Hundreds of buyers turned out for the junior fair livestock auction despite sweltering heat, looming humidity and rutted, muddy parking spaces.
Though they couldn’t control parking lot conditions, the sale committee did its best to keep buyers happy: multiple barn fans, cold drinks, a buffet of snacks. And, with suggestions from the fair board, auctioneers and ringmen pressed bidders to keep the sale moving quickly in the ever-warming sale arena.
Buyers shelled out $208,285.59, with receipts up more than $36,000 from last year.
Steers. Last year, Ryan Bell was bested in steer competition by his little sister Alison. This year, Ryan proved he had what it took by claiming both the grand and reserve champion spots.
His 1,291-pound champion brought $3.50 per pound from Holland Supply in Lewis Center, Ohio, and backup bidder Gibson-Governor Insurance won his 1,228-pound reserve champion for $2 per pound.
Two steers deep in the sale order fetched bids higher than the reserve champion, with Spencer Strimbu’s 1,379-pounder getting a $2.50-per-pound bid, and Katie Mathews’ 1,185-pounder getting $2.25.
Rate of gain winner was Stephen Varga of Brookfield.
Forty-seven steers totaled $81,413.80, averaging $1,732.21 with champions and $1,654.21 without.
Beef carcass. The beef carcass competition looked a lot like last year, with the same two young men staying seated in the top two spots, and the same two buyers making the top bids.
Vince Meloni of Kinsman sold his 650-pound champion carcass for $4.50 per pound to Hudson Construction. Stewart Campbell of Bristol sold his 598-pound reserve champion for $3 per pound to Ainsley Oil.
In 2005, Hudson paid $3.70 per pound for Meloni’s project, and Ainsley bought Campbell’s for $2.70 per pound.
Fifteen beef carcasses totaled $24,800, averaging $1,653.34 with champions and $1,544.70 without.
Hogs. The market hog competition, however, remained a sibling rivalry for Ryan and Alison Bell. After yielding to her big brother in the steer contest, Alison Bell took the grand champion spot with her 279-pound market hog.
Bill Strimbu of Strimbu Trucking and the Strimbu Memorial Fund bid $5 per pound for the champion, nearly double the bid on last year’s champion.
Ryan Bell, meanwhile, earned a $3.75-per-pound bid from Gibson-Governor Insurance for his 267-pound reserve champion.
The real winner in the market hog sale was St. Judes Children’s Research Hospital. Members Jacob and Stephen Varga raised a 228-pound hog for the charity hospital, and King Brothers of Bristolville, Ohio, paid $10 per pound for the hog.
King Brothers has purchased the charity hog for the past three years.
Ryan Winfield sold his 204-pound champion carcass hog for $2.80 per pound to dentist David Harnett. Aaron Schwartz sold his 182-pound reserve champion for $3.20 per pound to Cope Farm Equipment.
Hog showmanship winners were Ryan Bell, senior; Emily Robinson, intermediate; Alison Bell, junior; and Ben Kaiser, novice.
One-hundred nine market hogs sold for $40,644.20, averaging $372.89 with champions and $357.46 without.
Thirty-five carcass hogs sold for $14,335.35, averaging $409.59 with champions and $399.45 without.
Dairy feeders, steers. A Brown Swiss shown by Jacob Cox of Brookfield topped the field of 30 dairy feeders. The 592-pound champion sold for $1.40 per pound to the Trumbull County Farm Bureau.
However, bidders exceeded that mark for the reserve champion calf.
Holly Lynn’s 561-pound reserve champion, a Holstein, got $1.70 per pound from McCullough Hardware. On their way to the sale ring for photos, Linda and Roger McCullough upped their bid to $2 per pound.
Jennifer Andrella of Newton Falls won the outstanding project award.
Thirty dairy feeders totaled $19,496.50, averaging $649.89 with champions and $626.64 without.
Dairy beef numbers continue to dwindle, down two from 2005. Jennifer Andrella of Newton Falls topped the field of seven steers with her 1,289-pound Holstein, which earned a $1.10 bid from LaFarge.
Repeating her 2005 placing, Monica Boorn of Bristolville sold her 1,401-pound reserve champion for $1.15 per pound to Ken and Robin Hopkins of Warren.
Seven dairy beef steers totaled $9,345.90, averaging $1,335.13 with champions and $1,263.37 without.
Lambs. With perennial winner Drew Turner out of 4-H, there was room for new blood in the lamb contest’s winners’ circle.
Madison Rice of Brookfield used her 155-pound black lamb to take the top spot. Bill Strimbu of the Strimbu Memorial Fund bought her champion for $3 per pound.
Mike Diehl’s 142-pound reserve champion brought $1.75 per pound from Midway Buick Chevy Pontiac in Orwell.
Twenty-three lambs totaled $4,621.05, averaging $184.85 with champions and $169.90 without.
Shelby List of Mecca bumped Mike Diehl, who raised the 2005 champion carcass lamb, from the top spot in that contest.
List’s 64-pound carcass lamb brought $7.50 per pound from county recorder Diana Marchese. Diehl’s 63-pound reserve champion brought a $6 bid from Clarence and Greg Hoye of Cortland.
Eight carcass lambs totaled $1,772.50, averaging $221.57 with champions and $152.42 without.
Goats. It was quite the fair for Sean Offerdahl. The young man was crowned fair king and took three of the top four spots in market goat competition, plus another championship in rabbit competition.
Offerdahl sold his 35-pound (hanging weight) grand champion carcass goat for $5 per pound to Camelot Therapeutic Riding Center at Southington.
James Lewis sold his 19-pound reserve champion carcass goat, also for $5 per pound, to Curveview Farms at Johnston.
Offerdahl sold his 90.1-pound champion market goat for $8 per pound to Andrew Pecchio of Sugar Creek Farm in Warren. His 77.9-pound reserve champion brought $3 per pound from state Rep. Randy Law.
Eleven market goats totaled $1,441, averaging $219.44 with champions and $112.91 without.
Small animals. Offerdahl kicked off the 2006 sale with his grand champion pen of market rabbits. His 13.3-pound pen brought $13 per pound from Appellate Judge Diane Grendell.
Grendell donated the pen back for resale, and on its second trip through the ring it netted $2 per pound for charity.
Offerdahl stood second last year to Jonathan Brzyscz of North Bloomfield, and the two young men traded places this project year.
Brzyscz sold his 10.8-pound pen for $21 per pound to Michelle Klamorick of Bristolville.
Three pens of market rabbits totaled $461.20, averaging $153.74 with champions and $61.50 without.
Ducks. In its second year as a auctioned project, the market duck project attracted two exhibitors. Newcomer Erica Dulka of Bristolville bested last year’s champion, Morgan Rice, to take the top spot.
Bidding started slowly for Dulka’s 6.2-pound bird and it looked like the gavel would fall at a $7.25 bid. But the contending bidder stopped the sale to offer a bid of $50 per pound, fetching Dulka a cool $310 for her project from Court of Appeals candidate Paul Brickner.
Morgan Rice pulled in a respectable $30-per-pound bid for her 6.7-pounder from the Strimbu Memorial Fund.
Four market ducks totaled $651.10, averaging $162.78 with champions and $140.10 without.
Chickens. Craig Clemson saw a repeat from last year, again coming out on top in the market chicken project. Clemson sold his 30.2-pound champion pen of three for $16 per pound to Crowder Klingensmith Feed and Supply.
Erin Kaiser of Vienna sold her 30.6-pound reserve champion pen for $12 per pound to county commissioner candidate Niki Frenchko of Warren.
But three other pens further down the sale order topped both champion and reserve champion bids. Michael Marshall of Fowler, who’s no stranger to having champion poultry projects, earned $17 per pound from his fourth-place pen.
Marshall also raised a charity pen for Teen Straight Talk, which fetched $17 per pound. Erin Kaiser’s charity pen for the Ronald McDonald House netted a $20-per-pound bid.
Thirteen pens of market chickens totaled $3871.30, averaging $351.94 with champions and $297.80 without.
Turkeys. Last year’s grand champion turkey exhibitor, Gary Offerdahl, was knocked to third place this year, yielding the top spots to Ben Kaiser and Trevor Trumbull.
Kaiser’s 36-pound champion brought $11 per pound from Mike Davis Auctioneers. Trumbull’s 33.8-pound reserve champion stole the show, its showy ruffled feathers on display, and fetched a $20-per-pound bid from Ianazone’s Pizza.
Eighteen turkeys totaled $4,406.25, averaging $244.80 with champions and $208.39 without.
Helping out. Auctioneers and ringmen for the sale included Beth Hilmar, Tim Hunt, Mike Davis, Heath Davis and Nub Owens.
Owens was recognized at the sale’s kickoff for his longtime help with youth livestock projects.
(Reporter Andrea Myers welcomes reader feedback by phone at 800-837-3419 or by e-mail at email@example.com.)
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