Following is a guest post from Marisa Linton. Marisa grew up showing and raising livestock, and currently lives on her family’s small farm in Mount Olive. She has shown animals at the N.C. State Fair for the past 14 years and is a past youth livestock scholarship recipient. She is an N.C. State University graduate, agricultural photographer and blogger.
If you were anywhere near the N.C. State Fairgrounds during the first week of June, you probably heard the lowing of cattle. Every year, youth and their families come together with their bovine at the Junior Beef Roundup. This event is all about family, fun and, of course, cattle.
The weekend consists of cattle shows and contests for youth. Cattle of all shapes, sizes and breeds are represented at the show. Classes are divided into breeds such as Angus, Hereford, belted Galloway and more. A breed class can be created so long as there are at least 10 heifers of that breed registered for the show. Commercial cows can be shown, too.
In addition to the cattle shows, there are also other contests. Youth can enter a photography contest that focuses on cattle, farm landscape, people working with cattle, or a cattle event. There is also a graphic design contest where youth create a flier promoting the slogan, “Beef. It’s What’s for Dinner.” These contests encourage youth to learn more about marketing, allowing them to make a connection between the producer and consumer. The final competitions include cattle judging and skillathon contests to test participants’ cattle knowledge and selection skills.
While there is a great deal of competitions, ribbons and prizes to be won, there is also another story to be told.
The N.C. Junior Beef Roundup has become a tradition for many participants. There are ribbons and cattle everywhere. More importantly, you find a sense of family.
“It started as a fun thing to do, but has built into a lifelong adventure that we get to pass down through the generations. It became a part of who we are. It’s more than just the chase of the championship drive; it’s seeing our family and our farm grow,” said Avery Faulkner, a longtime participant.
Avery has now aged out of the competitions, but that doesn’t stop him from coming back with his family. His younger cousin now shows, and he enjoys helping and supporting him outside of the ring.
“Time passes, roles change. For me going from the show ring to the makeup area was a big difference, but it’s still just as exciting getting to watch my cousin and see his success and growth as it was to be in the ring myself. That’s more than enough to keep me working towards the next show,” says Avery.
Said Taylor Glover, a senior participant at the roundup: “My favorite part was socializing with friends and helping fellow showmen. I always like helping the younger showmen and making sure they go to the show ring in time. At every show, I learn that it doesn’t matter about what place you get, but it matters about the friendships you make.”
Sure, there are a lot of cattle at the N.C. Junior Beef Roundup, but if you look closely, it’s much more than that. It’s about friends and families.
- Grand Champion Heifer: Thomas Smith, TX Mercy Me
- Reserve Grand Champion Heifer: Bethany Mackey, CNL Sheza Tease
- Grand Champion Cow/Calf: Cara Smith, EJS Miss Top Choice 505C
- Reserve Grand Champion Cow/Calf: Bethany Mackey, ELMR Ameera 308A
- Grand Champion Heifer: Riley Wood, Wood Blackbird 565
- Reserve Grand Champion Heifer: Justin Wood, Dameron C-5 Cheyenne 5199
- Grand Champion Cow/Calf: Wyatt Kendall, PCF Julie Pendleton 308
- Reserve Grand Champion Cow/Calf: Maddie Carpenter, EBS Miss Rosebud 239-596
- Grand Champion Heifer: Mattie Harward, RF Ms Sweet Breeze 642
- Reserve Grand Champion Heifer: Madison Adams, Tee Jay Sugar Valley 388
- Grand Champion Cow/Calf: Madison Adams, Tee Jay Swagger 372
- Grand Champion Heifer: Hannah Haley, Baby
- Reserve Grand Champion Heifer: Schyler Crocker, Betty
- Grand Champion Heifer: Austin Teeter, AMT 327C
- Reserve Grand Champion Heifer: Austin Teeter, GHGF Deanna 77D
- Grand Champion Cow/Calf: Karen Eby, BCFG Ms Star 13C
- Reserve Grand Champion Cow/Calf: Jesse Henson, HMEG 413B
- Grand Champion Heifer: Victoria Ward, ELCX Charlotte
- Reserve Grand Champion Heifer: Victoria Ward, Delicious
- Grand Champion Cow/Calf: Hannah Horne, Skittles
- Grand Champion Heifer: Regan Mitchem, Sull Diana, 6539D ET
- Reserve Grand Champion Heifer: Jordan Mitchem, WR CH Miss Throttle 148C
- Grand Champion Cow/Calf: Maddie Carpenter, KB MB Hometown Chic 841 B902
- Reserve Grand Champion Cow/Calf: Joy Leigh Hinnant, TJF Icecold Investment
- Grand Champion Heifer: Jacob Presnell, Presnell Ivanka D152
- Reserve Grand Champion Heifer: Jacob Presnell, Damar Betty
- Grand Champion Cow/Calf: Mason Blinson, JK MEB Violet 202
- Reserve Grand Champion Cow/Calf: JK Red Star 259
All Other Breeds
- Grand Champion Heifer: Schylar Crocker, Croc IMA Fancy Diva
- Reserve Grand Champion Heifer: Ross Hinnant, RAP Darla D605
- Grand Champion Cow/Calf: Lynae Bowman, LBSC Cowgirl Oakley May 426B
- Grand Champion Heifer: Cooper Joines, JS Faith 16D
- Reserve Grand Champion Heifer: Thomas Smith, SFI Miss Extravagant
- Grand Champion Cow/Calf: Mattie Harward, URF Burgess B102
- Supreme Champion Heifer: Riley Wood, (Angus)
- Reserve Supreme Champion Heifer: Regan Mitchem (Hereford)
- Third Overall Heifer: Schyler Crocker, (All Other Breeds)
- Fourth Overall Heifer: Jacob Presnell, (Red Angus)
- Fifth Overall: Victoria Ward, (Limousin)
- Supreme Champion Cow/Calf: Lynae Bowman, (All Other Breeds)
- Reserve Supreme Champion Cow/Calf: Cara Smith, (Simmental)
- Third Overall Cow/Calf: Mattie Harward, ( % Simmental)
- Fourth Overall Cow/Calf: Mason Blinson, (Red Angus)
- Fifth Overall: Wyatt Kendall, (Angus)
- Senior Grand Champion: Jacob Presnell
- Senior Reserve Grand Champion: Karen Eby
- Intermediate Grand Champion: Schyler Crocker
- Intermediate Reserve Grand Champion: Marcie Harward
- Junior Grand Champion: Jordan Mitchem
- Junior Reserve Grand Champion: Ross Hinnant
- Novice Grand Champion: Cooper Joines
- Novice Reserve Grand Champion: Maddie Carpenter
Jim Butler Award*
- Jordan Mitchem – Junior
- Lynae Bowman – Intermediate
- Wyatt Kendall – Senior
- Overall Jim Butler Winner – Lynae Bowman
*Jim Butler Award is given to those who have accumulated points in different categories such as showing, photography, etc.