New Liskeard Fall Fair Purebred Show
By Emily Potter, Beef North Project Assistant
I spent some time talking to Samara Cull, the Market Beef Director, who decided to bring the tradition back this year. Samara originally started showing for her uncle, Phil Alexander, to get more involved in the agricultural community. Through showing, she was offered the position of Market Beef Director on the New Liskeard Agricultural Society for the fall fair. With numbers for the market beef show at the fair declining over the last few years, Samara felt that the beef barn could benefit from some new things happening during the New Liskeard Fall Fair. Samara also worked with Zach Garner, the Director of the 4-H Beef and Junior Calf Show, and several local breeders to begin planning an open show for beef.
Talking to Vern Burnette, a purebred Angus breeder from New Liskeard, I learned that the purebred show at the New Liskeard Fall Fair used to be a "points" show and attracted producers from all over back in the 1980s. Vern remembered being a winner there in 1983. Due to lack of funding, over time the purebred show disappeared. This year Samara brought it back, starting small to work out any issues with the organization of it.
At a "points" show, each animal is awarded a certain number of points based on their placing in a class. These points go towards an overall placing at the end of the show season for each class of animals, and also act as a qualifier for the Supreme shows at The Royal Agricultural Winter Fair and Agribition (based on points accumulated throughout the season).
The show this year was held on Fridy, September 15th and highlighted Charolais, Hereford, Angus and commercial cattle, with 34 animals in total. Nathan Stirk from Orangeville, ON judged the beef classes at the New Liskeard Fall Fair. The show began with separate breed classes for bull calves, heifer calves, yearling heifers and cow-calf pairs. The Supreme Champion between breeds for bull calves was won by Potter Charolais' BPL Ebenezer 14E. The Supreme Champion female was taken by Potter Charolais' BPL Beyoncé 18B. Overall the show was a success and plans are in the works for next year's show.
Showing cattle is a great marketing strategy, especially in the purebred industry. It helps get your farm name out there and gives people a taste of what your herd looks like. Over the years, showing cattle has helped me meet many people within the Charolais industry and the beef industry in general.
The open show has been a great addition to both the market beef show and sale and the 4-H and junior beef shows. Next year, Samara hopes to do more advertising and expand the show, perhaps turning it into a "points" show someday. Their hope is to bring people from all over and return the show to its original glory.
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