Nineteen Marion County youths took entries to the Kansas Junior Livestock Show from Oct. 2 to 4 in Hutchinson, with two garnering top honors in their breed classes.
In just her second appearance at the state’s largest youth livestock show, 9-year-old Ava Case had the champion Duroc market barrow. She also showed three other pigs.
Ava said she’s been involved with livestock shows “since I could walk,” and she’s done well at the county fair.
“I got a few reserves, one first, and I won showmanship of my age division,” she said.
Preparation for having her animals judged involved a lot of walking, Ava said.
“You have to give them different views: front, side, other side, and back,” she said. “I teach which way they need to go and how to walk.”
Ava was enthusiastic about returning to the show next year.
“I want to try a bunch of other stuff next year,” she said.
Ava moved with her mother to Newton this past year, but she remains a member of South Cottonwood 4-H, and worked with her pigs at the Hillsboro farm of her grandfather, Brad Vannocker, who was proud of her championship.
“We were just really happy,” he said. “You work a long time to make something like that happen.”
Payton Harms, a Centre High School sophomore, had the reserve champion Red Angus breeding heifer.
“I was pretty happy with the place,” Payton said. “Being a fall heifer and beating out spring heifers is pretty good, because spring heifers are more developed than fall heifers.”
Payton said his biggest job preparing his heifers for the show was getting them to walk into the stance required for judging.
“That’s a big thing I keyed on between state fair and the junior livestock show,” he said. “It’s pretty tricky to get because it’s not natural for them.”
Payton took advantage of the incentive of evening feeding time to train them.
“When we’d lead them out to hay we’d stop them and set their front feet up,” he said. “If they set up right, we’d just pull the halter off and let them go eat their hay. If they didn’t, we’d circle them around and we’d just keep going until they got set correctly.”
Patyon’s parents, Mark and Kim Harms, have a variety of breeds at Harms Plainview Ranch. Payton chose to show Red Angus partly because of his older siblings, Taylor and Cade.
“My brother shows mainly Charolais, and my sister showed mainly Angus, so for me it was something a little different as the youngest to be able to show,” he said.
His parents helped him choose heifers to show, Payton said.
“My mom and dad tried to tell me and teach me what to look for,” he said. “Every year I’m learning more and more about standards for the Red Angus breed.”
The size of the show can be “a little nerve-racking” for animals, Payton said, but he found the experience enjoyable.
“It was a good time and good representation for our ranch,” he said.
Kansas junior livestock show Marion County results
Cailey Barney, Tampa: 2nd, commercial ewe lamb; 3rd, junior sheep showmanship; 9th, blackface market lamb.
Zach Barney, Tampa: 5th, commercial ewe lamb; 5th, blackface market lamb.
Ava Case, Newton: 2nd, dark AOB market barrow; 7th, commercial gilt; 9th, commercial gilt; Champion Duroc market barrow.
Devon Gaines, Newton: 3rd, crossbred market steer.
Morgan Gaines, Newton: 5th, Hereford market steer.
Weston Gaines, Newton: 6th, Simmental market steer.
Lisa Geis, Durham: 2nd, commercial doe kid; 4th commercial ewe lamb; 4th, commercial Doe Kid; 5th, senior goat showmanship; 9th, commercial ewe lamb.
Payton Harms, Lincolnville: 2nd, Red Angus breeding heifer; Reserve Champion Red Angus breeding heifer.
Emily Meier, Goessel: 2nd, MaineTainer breeding heifer.
Madeline Meier, Goessel: 3rd, Shorthorn breeding heifer; 4th, commercial breeding heifer.
Elizabeth Meyer, Tampa: 10th, commercial ewe lamb; 13th, blackface market lamb.
Cody Parmley, Cedar Point: 3rd, light cross market barrow; 9th, commercial gilt.
Corin Parmley, Cedar Point: 5th, commercial ewe lamb; 6th, Chianina breeding heifer; 9th, commercial gilt.
Jensen Riffel, Lincolnville: 4th, dark cross market barrow; 8th, light cross market barrow.
Karl Riffel, Tampa: 10th, commercial doe kid; 8th, Yorkshire gilt; 8th; commercial doe kid; 9th, light cross market barrow.
Landon Roberts, Hillsboro: 3rd, blackface market lamb; 6th, commercial gilt.
Sarae Roberts, Hillsboro: 2nd, blackface market lamb; 4th, commercial ewe lamb; 4th, blackface market lamb.
Lane Smith, Peabody: 3rd, Red Angus breeding heifer; 5th, dark cross market barrow.
Calleigh Soyez, Marion: 10th, commercial gilt; 3rd, blackface market lamb; 3rd, commercial ewe lamb; 7th, commercial ewe lamb; 8th, dark cross market barrow; 9th, blackface market lamb.