Champions rake in the cash at Weld County Fair’s Youth Livestock Sale
To say that Grace Goad’s first attempt at marketing was a success would be an understatement.
Just hours before Monday’s Youth Livestock Sale that concluded this year’s Weld County Fair, the 11-year-old from Greeley paid a visit to a few area businesses to invite them to the sale – as some of the other young 4-Hers do to promote the event – and also handed out fliers with her picture and information on it.
One stop she made was at Anadarko Petroleum Company in Evans – the business that would buy Grace’s three Overall Grand Champion chickens for $3,000 Monday night, which sale organizers believe is a record for that species at the Weld County Fair.
“I was just like ‘Wow,’ ” Grace said after the sale, while also noting that she planned to save that money to buy a heifer for next year’s fair, a plan with which her dad, John, agreed.
“I think we’re all in shock right now,” John Goad said. “We were just wanting to teach our daughter about marketing, so she stopped by a couple places and introduced herself.
“We were really trying to promote the sale more than anything, but I guess it worked out well for her.”
Chris Castilian, the public information officer for Anadarko who attended Monday’s sale, said the company has been showing up at the auctions and increasing its all-around support of the Weld County Fair the past five years.
“I believe we usually have a few young ones that stop by the office to invite us. Maybe that helps them out a little at the sale. I don’t know,” said Castilian, whose company also bought Ryleigh Carr’s Grand Champion market swine for $7,500, Faith Fetzer’s Grand Champion goat for $2,100 and Hans Vickland’s Grand Champion turkey for $1,500.
“But all the kids have a strong work ethic, they’re so polite and courteous and respectful, and we want to reward that behavior as much as we can.”
Grace Goad’s big night continued only moments later, as she had also been named the Overall Reserve Champion in the chickens category earlier in the week and sold her second-place trio of poultry for another $1,000 Monday night.
However, taking home the biggest check of the evening would be Jaylinn Lohr, whose Overall Grand Champion 1,347-pound steer – named Ronald – would be bought for $8,400 by Dr. Rick Mellin, a local oral surgeon.
“I didn’t know what to expect,” said Jaylinn, whose parents, Mike and Nancy, said some of the money, after taking care of feed expenses, would go toward a college fund. “But I’m definitely happy with what I got.”
While the money was nice, it was still hard to part from Ronald, who had a new owner following Monday’s sale.
“I had a lot of fun with him,” a teary-eyed Jaylinn said of Ronald, who was born and raised on the Lohr family farm near Gill. “I’m going to miss him, but it’s part of the business. There will be another one next year.”
Also having difficulty parting with her prize-winning livestock Monday night was Lindsay Bowman, whose Grand Champion sheep sold to JBS USA for $3,500.
“We could tell early on he was a good one,” said the Kersey teen, also fighting back tears. “I’ll definitely miss him a little.”
On a happier note, like the Lohrs, Lindsay and her mother, Lianne, said the money will go toward college.
“It will be a big help,” Lianne said. “This year was her first win after 10 years of 4-H. She worked so hard for it … and I’m probably the proudest mom in the world right now.”