There’s a trend in Switzerland County, and it has to do with rising numbers for total sales of the Livestock Auction at the Switzerland County 4-H Fair.
The total sales at this year’s fair was $108,640, the best since 2001 when the total was $108,720.
And that’s economic news that’s good for the youth of 4-H.
In 2009, the total for Switzerland County 4-H Fair Livestock auction had dropped to $86,745, more than $11,000 than the year before. However, since 2009 the total has gradually increased. In 2010, it was $91,765. In 2011, it was $96,035. And in 2012, the total was $105,989. The all-time highest auction total was achieved in 2000 at $125,225.
So, while success with the livestock auction and winning ribbons are all wonderful, Switzerland County extension agent Ginger Furnish said this year’s Switzerland County 4-H Fair was successful for much more meaningful reasons.
“It’s a good time to learn and it’s a good time for family,” she said. “We want to do our best and we want to excel, but we did things at this year’s fair that go beyond the ribbons. It’s about friendships, relationships, career exploration. Not necessarily the big things, but the intangible things” that are truly going to make a difference for the remainder of the lives of all the 4-H youth who participated in this year’s fair.
For Ginger Furnish, it’s her last Switzerland County 4-H Fair as an extension agent. She’s retiring by the end of the year, but Ginger Furnish’s presence will be at the fair. “I have four grandchildren in the county and at Green Lake, Wisconsin. I’m going to sit in the stands and be a grandma.”
But for now, there’s still lots of 4-H activity this summer. The Indiana State Fair is August 2nd to August 18th in Indianapolis, and Switzerland County has 186 eligible projects, and “most of them are going to the state,” Ginger Furnish said. In addition to the many exhibits, there will be a few animals going, including Vicky Abbott and Robin Furnish, who will be taking horses to the State Fair.
No doubt there were a lot of outstanding projects at this year’s Switzerland County 4-H Fair. “The judges were very much impressed with the quality of the work,” said Ginger Furnish.
Clay Althoff had the Grand Champion Steer at this year’s fair. It sold for $3,200, a decrease from last year’s record of $4,800. The buyers included RS Homes, Coca Tan, Cutter Farms and Friendship State Bank. Casper Stow’s Reserve Grand Champion Steer was sold to Chandler Chevrolet and Chandler Select of Madison for $2,300.
There were 16 steers in the livestock auction that sold for a total of $38,150 and an average of $2,384.38. Last year there were 17 steers in the livestock auction that sold for a total of $35,600 and an average of 2,094.12.
Ariana Roberts sold her Grand Champion Swine to Hilltop Basic Resources for $1,350, a slight drop from last year’s champion that sold for $1,400. There were a total of 42 swine that sold for $35,600 overall, an average of $847.62 per animal. Last year there was a total of 40 swine that sold for $30,125 overall, an average of $753.13 per animal.
Hailey Gerster sold her Reserve Grand Champion Swine to Fairview Grocery for $1,000.
Maggie Moore had the Grand Champion Sheep, which sold for $750 to GEI Fluid Power. That’s less than last year’s Grand Champion Swine that was sold for $875. Maggie Moore also had the Reserve Grand Champion Sheep, so the Reserve was not sold. The total selling price for sheep was $5,550, a slight increase over last year’s total of 5,435. There were 11 sheep in the auction, just one more than last year’s 10 sheep. The average selling price was $504.55.
Riley Phagan had the Grand Champion Goat, which was bought by GEI Fluid Power for $700, down from last year’s champion that sold for $900. Raylinn Kappes had the Reserve Grand Champion Goat that was sold to Bovard and Leap Construction for $560. The overall sales for goats came to $12,375, a decrease from last year’s figure of $14,604.20. The average selling price for 30 goats was $412.50.
Leah Anders sold her Grand Champion Rabbit to Haag Ford, Sullivan Painting and Finney Farms for $550, the exact same as what last year’s champion received. The Reserve Grand Champion Rabbit came from Olivia Hewitt, which sold for $400 to Ken Roberts. The overall sales for rabbits came to $8,240, a decrease from last year’s total of $11,940. The average selling price for 24 rabbits was $343.33.
Andrew Romans had the Grand Champion Poultry that sold to Valley Christian Fellowship of Vevay for $625, less than the price of $700 that went to last year’s champion. Andrew Romans also had the Reserve Grand Champion Poultry, so it was not sold. The total sale for poultry was $5,475, an increase over last year’s total of $4,925. The 20 poultry projects sold for an average price of $273.75.
Isaac Hart had the Grand Champion Dairy, sold for $700 to Clifty Garden Center and Animal Supply of Madison, a drop from last year’s champion price of $1,100. The Reserve Grand Champion was from Robin Furnish, and it sold for $525 to Hilltop Basic Resourse, a decline from last year’s total of $600. There were six participants in Dairy with a total sales of $3,250, a drop from last year’s total of $3,360. The average selling price was $541.67.
The volume buyer was Chandler Chevrolet and Chandler Select of Madison.
The auctioneers were Bobby Owings and Denny Brown. The appraiser was Cox Livestock of Versailles. Lockers were Napoleon Locker, Pate’s Slaughtering and Wayne’s Meats. Eric Cole ran the livestock program.