About Me

Kentucky, United States
Fourth generation beef producer, wife, mother, 4-H & FFA supporter, agriculture advocate, Christian, WKU alum, love livestock shows, basketball, college football, Dallas Cowboys. All things agriculture.

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Busy Weekend at NAILE!

     Wonderful weekend in Louisville at the North American International Livestock Exposition junior heifer and steer shows. It's my favorite place to be in November with a few thousand members of the beef industry promoting not only breeding and market animals of most beef breeds but the industry's future leaders, our kids. The entire West Wing, West Hall, Pavillion, and Broadbent Arena are filled with the nation's best beef animals for both the junior and open shows, and if you walk outside to the trailers you'll find many penned or tied there also. To a beef producer it's the same feeling as a 5 year old being turned loose in the world's largest toy store!
     Walking through the barn visiting with friends and looking at cattle I love the familiar sounds of the turbo fans and the hum of clippers mixed with the smell of pink oil, clean sheen, hay, and yes cows. For those of us in the business, its home.
     I met a producer from Quebec, exhibiting for the first time in Louisville, but definitely not her first show. One of her first comments about Louisville was, "There's a lot of Hollywood here." Attending this show as much as I do I hadn't thought about it like that but she's right.  A large number of the exhibitors now have lights throughout their cattle, not just on the end panels as it began many years ago. I saw several with double halogen lights mounted on every fan bracket, making their cattle and stall area look like opening night for a movie. Marketing strategies to draw customers to the product of breeding stock, and of course just making the cattle and stall look better. The real work is completed by the fitters in the barn. The men and ladies with patience and skill to groom these wonderful animals beautifully for the ring. Is it worth it? If you say no, you haven't seen a fitted heifer or steer on the green shavings in Freedom Hall or had the pleasure of leading an animal into that great show ring.
     I want to share with you some of the sights of the beef show in Louisville.

     The stall area of calves in the feeder steer and penned heifer sale in Broadbent Arena.

This young lady was doing a great job drying the calf!

One of the many crews found in the West Wing fitting steers on show day, Sunday, November 13, 2011.

A championship drive moment of the Junior Steer Show. Baylor Bonham and judge.

Exciting time for Baylor Bonham of Newcastle, Oklahoma, as his steer is chosen Grand Champion.

Reserve grand champion steer, owned by Ashtin Guyer, Robinson, Illinois, and also second in class to the Bonham steer.

     A class in the Junior Hereford Show, held Sunday, November 13, 2011.

A crowd gathers late Sunday evening in Freedom Hall for the selection of the Supreme Champion Heifer. Champion heifers from all junior breed shows on Saturday and Sunday are brought to the ring and all judges from the shows score the heifers. The banner went to Nick Sullivan, Dunlap, Iowa, with his black and white ShorthornPlus heifer. Nick also received $2,500 and the use of an aluminum trailer for a year. 

Photographs in this post, taken by Wanda Quiggins

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