By CJ Vetter, Port Lavaca Wave
On Thursday, Oct. 19, 4-H and Future Farmers of America (FFA) members made some serious cash for their future at the Calhoun County Fair Junior Livestock Auction. Participants sold steers, goats, lambs, roasters, broilers, turkeys and rabbits for an unofficial total of $456,850 before add-ons.
For those children who participated in the program, the auction comes as the culmination of a year’s worth of hard work raising and caring for an animal. According to the 4-H organization, the program not only helps teach essential skills but also, the money earned from the auction can be put towards the children’s future.
Brian Ezzell, a father of two children, talked about how it’s helped his kids.
“It was a really great auction. The 4-H and FFA are really great opportunities for kids, and I’d like to see more kids in it,” Ezzel said. “It’s a great start for their future, whether it’s college or their first car. My son got his first truck from it and my daughter is going to school on money that didn’t come out of our pocket. So we’d really like to thank the buyers for supporting our kids.”
The auction itself divided the sale into sections, starting with the champions, the reserve champions and then the rest, alongside giving awards for showmanship. The champions are as follows:
· Grand Champion Steer – Justice Epley, purchased by Rexco for $14,000
· Reserve Champion Steer – Zane Starns, purchased by Alamo Beach, Ltd for $12,00
· Grand Champion Lamb – Laney Leos, purchased by First National Bank for $2,500
· Reserve Champion Lamb – Brynleigh Hunt, purchased by Southern Sass for $3,000
· Grand Champion Goat – McKenlie Frankson, purchased by Melstan’s for $3,000
· Reserve Champion Goat – Canion Frankson, purchased by Formosa Sportsman Club for $2,000
· Grand Champion Swine – Kayden Wagner, purchased by Lester Contractors for $14,000
· Reserve Champion Swine – Kally Billings, purchased by Alamo Beach, Ltd for $10,500
· Grand Champion Turkey – Rystan Darilek, purchased by Captex Construction for $5,000
· Reserve Champion Turkey – Christina Ragusin, purchased by Captex Construction for $5,000
· Grand Champion Roaster – Iveelynn Kolar, purchased by Captex Construction for $4,750
· Reserve Champion Roaster – Brody O’Donnell, purchased by Max Midstream for $5,500
· Grand Champion Broiler – Aveigh Casey, purchased by Sissy Sullivan for $8,500
· Reserve Champion Broiler – Lilly Gossett, purchased by Sissy Sullivan for $7,500
· Grand Champion Rabbit – Braylyn Galloway, purchased by Baybreeze Tax Depot for $10,000
· Reserve Champion Rabbit – Illiana Lara, purchased by RLB for $5,200
The auction was well received by both buyers and sellers. One such seller, Anauli Reyes, daughter of Port Lavaca Fire Department Fire Chief Joe Reyes, talked about her experience during the auction and encouraged other kids to participate.
“Going up there at first is a little nerve-wracking, but it feels good to win the money. I’ve been doing it since the third grade, so I’ve gotten used to it,” Reyes said. “It’s a lot of hard work at times, but you build a lot of skills. I think more kids should join 4-H.”