2nd Annual Fall Feeder Calf Preview
Sandhills Cattle Association
MULLEN, Neb. — The Sandhills Cattle Association had our 2nd Annual Fall Feeder Calf Preview this year with the Nebraska Cattlemen’s and Nebraska Cow-Calf Council. We held this tour on Sept. 7 and 8, which was about two weeks before our 82nd annual convention, so September was a busy month for the Sandhills Cattle Association.
We started our two-day tour off with registration and breakfast sponsored by Kraye Angus at the KwikStop in Mullen, Neb. After getting everyone registered and organized, our tour leader John Kraye started us on our way for a great day filled with beautiful scenery, cattle and wonderful company. Olsen-Andersen Angus, ran by Olen Olsen, his son-in-law Tim Andersen and the rest of their family, was our first stop of the beautiful morning. Tim and Megan, Olen’s daughter, moved back here to the Sandhills and joined Olen in 2013, and they have been enjoying ranching as a family and have really grown their Black Angus operation together as well. The next stop was just down the road at Tim and Deanna Simonson’s. Tim and Deanna have been ranching for nearly 25 years now, with just the two of them working together on their cow-calf operation. Tim likes to breed his Black Angus cows more for size, and it definitely showed by how large and nicely built his calves were already this early in the fall. Tim answered many questions and added a lot of humor and conversation within the group, and everyone enjoyed listening to him speak about his ranch. After that, we headed to Jay and Brenda Lovitt’s. Jay works for a nearby Ted Turner Buffalo Ranch while Brenda runs their ranch operation at home with the help of her parents. This dynamic shows that differentiation is super helpful to ranches’ success, and their calves’ appearance and quality were also outstanding this year. Leaving the Lovitt’s, we took the scenic route in the Sandhills and came upon the historical Dry Valley Church, and we stopped there to explore and have a great roast beef lunch provided by Kraye Angus.
After stretching our legs and letting our food settle, we started the drive south of Mullen to the Edis Ranch. Wade and Jeri Edis have pastureland right by the Sandhills Golf Company, and Wade is a full-time employee there too. They run a Black Angus cow-calf operation with the help of their two children Jaci and Lane and had some sizable calves produced this year. Finally, we headed to our last stop of day one, Hell Bar Limited Partnership, Charlie and Patrick Wright. Charlie and Pat have put back together their family’s ranch over the years and have grown into a sizeable Black Angus Cow-Calf operation. Their mother Delore’s had her 90th birthday that day and even came out to the ranch to look at all of their calves with us.
To end our first day, we traveled to Thedford, Neb., to the Sandhills Corral for supper and several guest speakers. We had a complimentary dinner served thanks to Vitaferm, Western Nebraska Bank, Elanco, Kraye Angus, and also a cash bar and social hour. We had guest speakers, Bruce Hoffman from Elanco and David Briggs with Sustainable Beef LLC, present for the evening. We had lots of interaction from fellow ranchers and attendees and everyone really seemed to have a great time together.
The following day bright and early at 7:30 am, we had breakfast at the Sandhills Corral, and then we headed on our way to our second day of the Fall Feeder Calf Preview. We stopped at Halls & Son’s south place, owned by Herb and Lora Hall, and had an excellent presentation by herdsman Jim Latoski who has been with the ranch for over seven years now. Next, we visited Heath and Kris Rasmussen, 2 R Ranch, who are first-generation ranchers with an impressive herd of Black Angus and Black Angus Hereford crosses. We arrived at the Paxton Ranch, owned by John and Jessica Warren, for the last stop of day two. John and Jessica had some great, heavily built Red Angus calves that they modified over the years from their original straight Hereford operation. John and Jessica Warren then graciously held lunch for us at their shop that was provided by Prairie Feed and Tack Supply of Thedford and Security State Bank. We had grilled burgers, cowboy beans, all the fixins’ and a great time visiting before we all went our separate ways.
Overall this tour was a great success thanks to our many sponsors and the Nebraska Cattlemen’s and Cow-Calf Council, and we hope to grow even more next year! It was an enjoyable two days with a lot of nice scenery and very impressive calves. If you or anyone you know would like to participate in next year’s Fall Feeder Calf Preview, please get in touch with us at the office at any time.
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