For the first time in the history of the organization, the American Boer Goat Association National Show was held in Nebraska, at Fonner Park in Grand Island.
This year was one of the largest shows ever held, with nearly 1,100 entries in the open show and 455 entries in the junior show.
Bringing the show to Grand Island was no easy task, and could not have been accomplished without the help of local Boer goat breeders Lee and Sharon Dana of Red Cloud, Neb.
“We were the liaison in letting people know what was available. There is so much offered that Fonner Park that people have never been exposed to, such as the big screens in the barn, the VIP room and the ample room, and we wanted to show that off,” said Sharon Dana.
She continued, “It ended up being a fantastic week weather-wise, and I believe it was one of the biggest shows they have had. I think it opened a lot of people’s eyes to what the Boer goat world is. It was really gratifying that it was a great show, and we were just tickled to death with the turn out.”
They have worked for more than the past six months to help make the show the best it could be.
“The Chamber of Commerce did a fantastic job representing the city. If the show comes back, there are more things we want to do. You can only introduce so much in a year. Just being at the other nationals, people seemed to always be complaining and we didn’t hear that at Grand Island,” she explained.
Her favorite part of the show was the fullblood doe show.
“I enjoyed the fullblood doe show the most. A lot of people would say the bucks, I love seeing the beautiful animals and wishing I could have them,” Dana said.
In addition to helping with the show, the Danas also had the opportunity to show.
“We have been to several national shows, but this is the first one we exhibited at. We made the cut on the two little ones. It’s nice to stand back and compare and see what the judges are looking for,” she said.
She added, “You get a better idea to know what you need. We always try to remember it’s just one person’s opinion that day. You have to open your eyes to improve your animals, and we take it as a learning experience.”
The Danas have been raising Boer goats for eight years.
“Originally, I wasn’t in favor of it. Lee brought them home. Lee managed a 450-head Angus operation, and I thought we had enough to do. And then I fall in love with them,” she said.
They had shown cattle in the past, so the jump to showing goats was natural.
“We enjoy it, and like to see what everyone else has as well,” Dana said.
They also raise a handful of market wether and doe kids.
“We do some 4-H wether goats, because we have demand for it. We don’t focus on that, though. We put them out there and if the students feel they will work, that’s fine. We are trying to supply some animals to the kids that can’t afford to buy a nice wether,” she stated.
They have seen the goat market expand in recent years in their area.
“It’s a growing trend around here. It’s a cattle area, but with the change in the number of people wanting smaller acreage, goats are an easier project to manage. With four wire panels and a tarp and a feed pan, you can have goats,” Dana explained.
They like to attend the national show to see where they need to go with their herd.
“It’s a great way to compare your animals on the national level, and it’s a great way to find out what you need to do to better your herd, and to improve your marketability. You see what the trends are,” she said.
The show was held from June 9-14, with exhibitors competing in the Junior American Boer Goat Association National Show, the JABGA Bred & Owned Show, as well as the ABGA National Show.
In the JABGA National Show, the overall national champion buck was Newton Farms Back To Square C197, owned by Kent Hollingsworth of Indiana. The overall reserve champion buck, owned by Trey Chavana of Texas, was MCR Power Surge.
The overall national champion fullblood doe was Newton Farms Ima Smokin’ Star C242, owned by Sydney Lewis of Indiana. The overall reserve champion fullblood doe was 2M Boer Goats Sophia, owned by Noah Teel of Oklahoma.
The overall national champion percentage doe was Newton Farms Squared Blonde C175, is also owned by Teel. The overall reserve champion percentage doe, MFR1 Sunday’s Best, is owned by Raelyn Butler of Texas.
In the JABGA bred & owned show, the overall national champion buck, Teel JB Man of Steel, and is owned by Teel. The overall reserve champion buck, MADI Bernie, is owned by Madison Fenton of Washington.
The overall national champion fullblood doe, OLA Prim C20, is owned by Cole Hammett of Missouri. The overall reserve champion fullblood doe, MADI Bellanca, is also owned by Fenton.
The overall national champion percentage doe, MFR1 Sunday’s Best, is owned by Butlet. The overall reserve champion percentage doe, Teel Loaded Beauty, is owned by Teel.
The overall national champion buck was EGGS Fixin’ to Party, and is owned by Samuel, Iris and Deanna Lerena of California. The reserve grand champion buck, also owned by the Lerenas, was STS1 Windy Acres Triple D.
The overall national champion fullblood doe was TST1 Windy Acres Precious Jewel, who is owned by Taeah Fisher of Oklahoma. The reserve grand champion fullblood doe was AABG Busy Being Fabulous, who is owned by Bailey Bergherm of Indiana.
The overall national champion percentage doe was BGBG1 Cranberry Ice, owned by Knox Larner of Texas. Larner also owned the reserve grand champion percentage doe, named AGNEW Just Showed Up.
Throughout the show, several youth events were held such as public speaking, a judging contest, boot scramble, costume contest and a live and silent auction to raise money.
This year, $13,103.50 was raised for the junior association.
Each year, the ABGA also picks a cause to raise money for, and this year money was raised for the American Diabetes Association, through the sale of T-shirts. A total of $1679.86 was donated.
This was the 20th celebration of the ABGA. Each year, the national show is held in June, where the best compete for the title of national champion. ❖