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State Fair of Texas holds auction to give back to student exhibitors

The State Fair of Texas held a Youth Livestock Auction to raise money for scholarships on Oct. 4 in the Tom Thumb Sales Pavilion.

Two hundred and fifty-seven exhibitors earned the right to participate in the Youth Livestock Auction. Ten of those 257 were awarded with Grand and Reserve Grand Champion in their species and were placed in the first ten lots of the sale.

“The youth auction is the best, most fun thing about the whole adventure,” said Alan Walne, chairman of the State Fair of Texas. “This really is the heart beat of the State Fair of Texas.”

Before the auction, the pavilion was full of cheery “hellos” and smiles. The buyers shook hands with Livestock Committee members while having lunch and exchanging information about the exhibitors and livestock they were planning on buying.

The talk of the room belonged to the Grand Champion Market Steer and its exhibitor, Saige Martin. Bill Watson, Vice President of Marketing for III Forks Steakhouse, explained what motivates him to be a buyer and, most importantly, why he wanted to buy the Grand Champion Market Steer.

“It’s great to give back,” said Watson. “This money is going towards scholarships and the exhibitor who has worked extremely hard to get where they are today.”

III Forks Steakhouse bought the Grand Champion Market Steer for $110,000. Since the exhibitor is only allowed to “take home” a capped amount of $30,000, the State Fair of Texas Scholarship Program was awarded with $80,000 to fund scholarships for high school students in Texas.

The remaining Grand and Reserve Grand Champions’ auction prices are as follows:

• Grand Champion Market Barrow – $10,000
o Exhibited by Cambrie Swafford, Lamesa FFA
• Grand Champion Market Lamb – $12,000
o Exhibited by Cameron Crenwelge, Kerr Co. 4-H
• Grand Champion Market Goat – $11,000
o Exhibited by Brittany Sanders, Harper FFA
• Grand Champion Market Broilers – $4,800
o Exhibited by Dalton Cooper, Caney Creek FFA
• Reserve Grand Champion Market Barrow – $5,000
o Exhibited by Weston Wyatt, Frenship FFA
• Reserve Grand Champion Market Lamb – $6,000
o Exhibited by Hayley Bates, Real Co. 4-H
• Reserve Grand Champion Market Goat – $5,300
o Exhibited by Samantha Garrett, Early FFA
• Reserve Grand Champion Market Broilers – $2,000
o Exhibited by Allison Grissett, Leon Co. 4-H

The auctioneer, Bill Hall, kept the auction interesting and fast-paced with his quick bidding and was successful in making the Youth Livestock Auction smooth sailing.

Congratulations to all of the State Fair of Texas’ Youth Market exhibitors and thank you once again to all of the buyers.

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