OKLAHOMA CITY — Thirty youth from across Oklahoma competed in the 2021 Midwest Shows Livestock Handling Scholarship Contest Dec. 17. The annual competition showcases the skills of young FFA members in practical, real-life cattle handling scenarios, such as weighing for accurate dosage, vaccinating and tagging calves in a hydraulic chute. Contestants are judged on skill, accuracy and efficiency as they process the animals.
“While stress-free processing has always been a goal of good cattlemen, proper and efficient handling has become even more important in the modern age of livestock production,” said AFR Cooperative President Scott Blubaugh. “With an increased need to diversify herds, producers can now expect cattle of all ages and backgrounds to be sent through the chute. It’s vital that young producers understand the needs of each animal.”
The annual contest begins with a written exam that measures students’ knowledge of livestock handling practices. At the state level, the competition emphasizes the application of classroom study to actual agricultural production scenarios. In order to excel, students must take knowledge out of the classroom and apply it in a real world situation.
“The industry needs young producers more than ever,” said Ddee Haynes, Midwest Shows representative and contest coordinator. “We hope this contest encourages young producers on their path to becoming full-fledged cattlemen and cattle women. This is a noble profession to pursue. We want them to know we’ll be supporting them every step of the way.”
Ten teams—two top teams from each FFA district—of three students each qualified for the state competition. Top-placing overall teams received caps and cash scholarship awards. The first place team in the livestock handling portion of the contest also received the Frank Elliot Scholarship and $2,000 in Priefert equipment to be used by the entire FFA chapter.
The overall winners of this year’s Midwest Shows Livestock Handling Scholarship Contest were:
1st Place – Valliant FFA Chapter: Baylee Weatherford, Sydney Tyler and Audry Davis
2nd Place – Newkirk FFA Chapter: Justin Fast, Addison Schnecberger and Kyson Thiel
3rd Place – Temple FFA Chapter: Jaramiah Chumley, Jake Smart and Jett McIntyre
4th Place – Crescent FFA Chapter: Maysen Garrett, Kinzie Bell and Ronni Adams
5th Place – Battiest FFA Chapter: Kace McDonald, Kyeson Perrin and Luke DeLozier
6th Place – Tipton FFA Chapter: Tiffany Lamar, Rose Lamar and Ethan Cowan
7th Place – Perkins-Tryon FFA Chapter: Kaden Brunker, Logan Hering and Hagen Cundiff
8th Place – Comanche FFA Chapter: Kylie Lemons, Caity Ramsey and Emma Parks
9th Place – Pawnee FFA Chapter: Erica Wells Kleman, Tayla Burns and Landon Shell
10th Place – Adair FFA Chapter: Caleb Peper, Dax Delozier and Blake Long
The 2021 Midwest Shows Livestock Handling Scholarship Contest was sponsored by American Farmers & Ranchers (AFR) Cooperative, Ballou Cattle Company, Behlen Country Farm & Ranch Equipment, Cattleac Cattle Equipment, Datamars Livestock, Oklahoma Cattlemen’s Foundation, Oklahoma Farm Bureau, Oklahoma National Stockyards and Priefert Rodeo & Ranch Equipment.
For more information on the Midwest Shows Livestock Handling Scholarship Contest or other AFR-sponsored youth events, contact AFR Youth Coordinator Tailor Atkinson at (405)218-5566 or email@example.com.
AFR Cooperative is a membership services organization established in 1905 as Oklahoma Farmers Union. AFR provides educational, legislative and cooperative programs across the state and serves as a watchdog for Oklahoma’s family farmers and ranchers and rural communities. The organization is actively supportive of the state’s agricultural industry and rural population with membership consisting of farmers actively involved in production agriculture and non-farmers adding their voice in support of AFR principles.