The Ohio Beef Expo...2017 Edition
Another Ohio Beef Expo has come and gone.
The Ohio Beef Expo is one of our favorite shows, There is such a camaraderie among the breeders and we always have a great time meeting up with old friends.
One of the other things that we like about the Ohio Beef Expo is the opportunity to speak with and meet so many like-minded cattle people walking through the barns. It really is a week dedicated to the growth of the cattle industry. It is always an honor to be a part of such a great program.
As always, the week was filled with lots of early mornings, lots of work, but lots of fun.
This year we took 4 cows to the Expo.
Three heifers...Charity, Saxon and Amber...
And our bull calf, Rocky.
Thursday morning started bright and early getting all of the cows washed and dried....
Which proved to be a challenge.
It turns out that when the temperature drops 30 degrees from day to day, not all the barns have water, and those that do, have wash racks that quickly turn to ice rinks.
Don't worry...none of our cows fell...
Just our people.
Our fitter arrived to start on the rough clipping.
Several families that we show all winter with had animals in the sale barn. Thursday is a pretty low-key day without too many barn visitors, so the kids took the opportunity to spend some time together.
We fired up the George Forman grill and they all came running.
These kids spend so much time together.
They are like brothers and sisters...complete with the occasional fighting and bad attitudes.
But, at the end of the day...they are best friends and always there for each other.
Friday morning started bright and early.
Our alarms went off at 2:30 a.m. so that we could pick up our fitter and be at the fair grounds by 4:00 a.m.
Since youth day was moved to Friday, we were forced to move our show time. We chose (sometimes we doubted our choice) to stay in the Cooper Arena which meant that our show had to start at 8:30 a.m.
We had 4 animals to get fed, washed, dried and fitted by 8:30 a.m.
The things we do for our cows!
The schedule and stress was all on our fitter.
Good thing, because our brains were definitely still asleep.
Our job was to just do whatever the fitter told us to do.
Now the hard part.
Keeping her clean until show time.
This is Bee.
She is one of our babies that we sold to JT Popick last fall.
JT has been showing Bee all year in the BEST.
We had a really hard time deciding which heifer to keep and which one to sell.
Isaac really wanted to keep Amber because she is his first calf, so we sold Bee.
Bee and Amber have been competing against each other all year in the BEST program. It has been back and forth all year.
Bee and Amber were in separate classes for this show.
Bee came out as Division Champion!
Amber's class was up next.
She finished second in her class.
Saxon and Charity's birthdays are only a week apart, so they were in the same class.
Charity won the class...
And went on to win reserve in her division.
Then it was time for the final drive.
Bee won Grand Champion Female!
This is when we started second guessing our decision to sell her.
JT has done a great job with Bee and we are so happy for him to claim this title. It is well deserved.
It has been fun for us to watch Bee mature and grow. The last month she has really blossomed. Daniel was not able to be at the Holmes County show a few weeks ago. I came home from the show and told him that I couldn't believe how much Bee had changed. When he saw her get off the trailer on Thursday morning, he told JT and his mom that Bee was going to win. They thought he was joking...
The smile on JT's face says it all.
It was time for the bulls to show.
On Thursday afternoon, we worked all the cows in this show arena just to get them used to the area. He did fine in practice.
However, by the time Rocky got in the ring for the show, the Angus parade had started. He was nose to nose with some huge Angus bulls. He was not amused and pretty much acted like an idiot.
I can't say that I blame him.
It was a good day for 4 Wiley Farm.
No, Charity is not dead...just dead tired.
And so were we!
The remainder of Friday and Saturday where spent catching up with friends and talking with people walking through the barn.
We also got to visit with some family from West Virginia that had cattle in the sale. It seemed that almost everywhere we turned in the barn or trade show, we ran into someone we knew. It felt like a family reunion.
It is so interesting to see how all the kids become such fast friends, even with those they didn't previously know.
Of course they had to have a friendly game of barn football.
Sunday was the final BEST show of the season.
Once again Bee and Amber went head-to-head.
They have battled all year and the final points standing came down to this show. Amber had a shot at second...but it was a long shot. It all came down to the final ring.
Bee got first and Amber got second. JT secured his spot in second place and Isaac was third for the season.
Charity was Miniature Breeds Division Champion and secured her spot of first in points for the season.
Bee was Champion Best of the Buckeye...
And Amber was Reserve Best of the Buckeye.
Finally, Charity represented the Miniature Breeds in the final drive.
I think she was as tired as we were.
Ohio Beef Expo week is always a long and exhausting week. So much is packed into such a short time. By Sunday afternoon, all we can think about is getting the trailer loaded and getting home to our beds. However, it an awesome four days.
The Ohio Cattlemens Association does a wonderful job organizing this event. The trade show is full of great vendors. Each year we save our pennies knowing that we are going to go to the Expo to buy much needed supplies (and try to keep from paying shipping on everything).
Each year we are pushed farther back in the sale barn...which is not a bad thing. It just means that there are more and more cattle in the sale. It shows what a strong cattle program Ohio has.
The BEST junior show had over 800 cattle entered. That is an astronomical feet to get 800 cattle through 2 show rings all in one day. I am sure that there are glitches, but we sure didn't notice any.
The organization, manpower, work and drive of those organizing and working the Expo is amazing. They spend hours and hours working to make the week a success and it truly was a success. Thank you to all those that make the Ohio Beef Expo the great event that it is!
We got home at about 6:45 p.m. Sunday night. We unloaded the cattle and a few necessities, hit the showers and then hit the couch.
We were anxious for a week of few commitments and some much needed rest....
You know that didn't happen
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Hello! I am Heather... the city girl turned mom to manure loving country boys. My husband and I both grew up in the city, but spent weekends visiting grandparents in the country. We are first generation farmers who learn best by almost always doing things the hard way. I hope you enjoy following along with our adventures down on the farm.