You wake up before the crack of dawn. Wash your steer. Dry your steer. Feed your steer. Fit your steer.
THEN, it’s show time. You walk into the ring, sweat dripping down your back, heart a pounding. The judge walks slowly around the ring evaluating each and every steer. You catch his eye. He sees you. He keeps watching you and your animal. The ring is silent. You can hear a pin drop. Then in one swift movement he slaps your steer. Your eyes well up as you catch your families eyes in the stands. Your mom is snapping pictures like a crazy lady. Your dad’s fist goes in the air with a victory punch. Your brother is stunned. Your sister is in shock. You just won the Illinois Sate Fair junior steer show. You can’t believe it. You set out with a goal the previous year and you achieved it. The long hours spent in the barn have finally paid off. You won the whole show.
Posing for a picture with Scotty (the show steer), country music star Scotty McCreery, and Governor Bruce Rauner, 4-Her Taylor Donelson, of McClean County, was all smiles during the Illinois State Fair ‘Sale of Champions.’ Scotty was performing in the grandstands when he heard the grand champion steer was named after him and thought he’d come check it out. Such a cool moment for Illinois 4-H! Photo credit: Scotty McCreery Facebook
While the entire audience can relate in your joy, there are some people, outside of the bleachers, who have no idea what it means to accomplish something as big as winning a livestock show. That is why, at this year’s Illinois State Fair, agriculture was brought back to the front and center, highlighting our state’s deep agricultural roots.
And that is why, we at AgriEnergy Resources, are proud supporters of the Illinois State Fair.
What was really neat about bringing agriculture back to the center of the fair, was that the championship drives was held in the Coliseum located right in the middle of the fairgrounds. Previously, the championship drives were held in the junior barns.
This year, people roaming the Midway had the opportunity to see for themselves how great agriculture is, including Governor Bruce Rauner and country music star and American Idol winner Scotty McCreery. They got in a bidding war during the auction of the grand champion steer. The governor ended up winning the bid with a record-breaking $61,000. Proceeds will go back to Illinois 4-H and FFA while the meat will be donated to the University of Illinois.
All in all, it was a great year for the Illinois State Fair and all the exhibitors. There’s something to be said about the fair, whether you’re into livestock or not. Among the array of foods, concerts, tractor pulls, demolition derbies, horse races, rides, games, there’s something for everyone.
We are so excited to see where the future of Illinois agriculture is heading and we can’t wait to visit our local county fair next week.
What’s your favorite part about the fair?