It’s show time.
It’s that time of year that so many youth beef exhibitors and families look forward to. What time is it? It’s time for junior nationals.
Actually, we are already at the peak of the junior national season.
This week, many Minnesota families have been in Des Moines, Iowa competing with their Angus heifers and steers.
As of last night, I know many other families who are making their way to Louisville, KY for Hereford Junior Nationals. Both the American Angus Association and American Hereford Association have the largest memberships, and junior nationals turnout, in the country!
So yes, many Minnesota families are chasing highway lines and banners as they head across the country with their cattle to compete in junior nationals. Junior nationals are breed-specific shows that give youth the opportunity to compete in the show ring and in personal development contests such as public speaking, sales, photography and crafts. In addition to the leadership skills, youth are also presented with the opportunity to meet new friends from across the country.
There are also fitting contests, where individuals work together on a team to present their heifer or steer in the best way possible. Combs, adhesive (aka hairspray for cattle), blowers and clippers line each chute.
Imagine the Olympic Games. Opening and closing ceremonies? No problem, the beef industry has its own version at junior nationals!
Back in June, we had some familiar Minnesota faces down at NAJRAE, the North American Junior Red Angus Event (aka Red Angus Junior Nationals).
It’s a week full of fun and games PLUS leadership for the junior Board of Directors, exhibitors and families. Never a dull moment at junior nationals! In and around the barns, you will find youth laughing with old friends and mingling with new friends.
Last week, a crew from Minnesota headed south for Tulsa to compete in Shorthorn Junior Nationals. Pictured below are Connor Bollum and Kelly Morrison ready to compete in the Senior Sales Competition. They placed 2nd with their pitch to “Make Shorthorns Great Again!” What a classy and distinguished group of young people we have here!
Now that Angus Junior Nationals are finishing up, we want to wish everyone headed home from Des Moines a safe return!
Best of luck to those in route to Louisville for Hereford Junior Nationals this coming week! Stay cool!
Have you been competing in junior nationals this summer? If so, we want to see your photos and hear your results from your junior nationals experience! Post a photo in the Facebook comments section from this blog post.
Looking forward to hearing from you,