BEST youth were recognized with a wide array of awards after a successful

Cattlemen youth awarded for a successful BEST season

The Ohio Cattlemen’s Association’s (OCA) Beef Exhibitor Show Total (BEST) program celebrated 25 years with the wrap up the 2023-2024 BEST season in May at the Ohio Expo Center in Columbus. The awards banquet was attended by over 750 participants and their families. Over 350 BEST exhibitors were awarded for their show success, cattle industry knowledge, photography skills, community service efforts, and more.

This year’s BEST program featured eight weekends of sanctioned shows held throughout the state. Over 700 youth participants showed 1,000 head of market animals and heifers throughout the season.

This year’s sponsoring partners were Robbins Show Steers, Ag-Pro Companies, Bob Evans Farms, Diamond T Land and Cattle Co., Dickson Cattle Co., Giulitto Trucking LLC, M.H. EBY, Inc., Performance Training Solutions, The Folks Printing, Jones Show Cattle, R.D. Jones Excavating, Ricer Equipment, 6R Farms, Shepard Cattle Company and Weaver Livestock.

The year-end BEST banquet kicked off with the annual Ronald McDonald House Charities (RMHC) donation. BEST exhibitors raised money earlier in the year through the Celebrity Showdown and collected pop tabs all year. Over 800 pounds of pop tabs were collected, and this year’s donation total was $15,030. The highest donations were from Austin Sutherly, Clark County with $2,255, and Jordan Flax, Clark County with $1,380. Ella and Emma Grimwood of Ashland County submitted the most tabs with 432 pounds. 

Thanks to the program’s generous sponsors, many door prize giveaways and drawings were held. The hottest drawings were for the BEST trailer, the Buckeye Breeders Series (BBS) trailer (both trailers donated by M.H. EBY), and the John Deere Gator (donated by Ag-Pro). The winners of these prizes receive a full year’s use of the item. The following were this year’s winners:

BEST Trailer – Hayden Shumaker, Clinton County

BBS Trailer – Natalie England, Portage County

BBS Gator – Sautter Farms, Sandusky County

The Novice Division of BEST includes first, second and third-year participants. All Novice exhibitors received an entry into a separate  drawing for every animal they showed at each show throughout the season. This year’s prize was a wrapped show box donated by Weaver Leather Livestock. The winner of the show box was Abby Wolbaugh, Wayne County.

The following awards were presented to the OCA BEST youth exhibitors for their season-long accomplishments: 

Character traits winners 

OCA and Weaver Leather Livestock teamed up to recognize individuals that are exceptional leaders, no matter their age. Weaver sponsored the 2023-2024 BEST Character awards, highlighting Passion, Motivation, Determination, and Respect. Any OCA member, BEST participant or their parents could nominate exhibitors for any of these traits. This year’s winners were:

Respect – Madisen Jolliff, Hardin County

Determination – Gracie Giulitto, Portage County

Motivation – Garrett Reusch, Medina County

Passion – Hayden Shumaker, Clinton County

Youth scholarships 

BEST participants’ efforts in academics and extracurricular activities are also recognized through the BEST Scholarship program. This year four $1,000 scholarships were awarded: Luke Jennings, Clermont County; Laura Cutlip, Knox County; Kaylee Jennings, Clermont County; and Landyn Scheetz, Stark County.

16-show attendees

It takes a lot of time and dedication for juniors and their parents to attend any of the BEST shows, but several individuals attended all 16 BEST shows across the state. Ninety BEST participants won a free single-show entry pass for the 2024-2025 season.

Photography contest

This year’s photography contest had top-notch entries encompassing four divisions: BEST Shows and Activities, Landscapes, People, and Around the Farm. Three winners were awarded in each age division and an Editor’s Choice and Editor’s Choice Honorable Mention were selected from all submissions. The winners were as follows:
1st Place Beginner – Natalie Atterholt, Ashland County
1st Place Junior – Emma Helsinger, Preble County

1st Place Intermediate – Kylie Holman, Licking County
1st Place Adult – Morgan Love, Fairfield County

1st Place Senior – Jill Hiles, Pickaway County
Editor’s Choice – Emma Helsinger, Preble County

BEST Showmanship Winners
Champion Beginner Showman – Madison Fisher, Perry County
Reserve Beginner Showman – Josie Bowcott, Gallia County 

Champion Junior Showman – Kolten Greenhorn, Greene County  
Reserve Champion Junior Showman – Macy Stanley, Ross County
Champion Novice Showman – Paige Atkins, Muskingum County 
Reserve Novice Showman – Laine McKenna, Licking CountyChampion Intermediate Showman – Delaney Chester, Warren County
Champion Intermediate Showman – Brock Perry, Ottawa County

Reserve Champion Intermediate Showman – Marissa Graham, Licking County  

Champion Senior Showman – Halee Robinson, Athens County
Reserve Champion Senior Showman – Kaylee Jennings, Clermont County

Stockmanship Division

The Stockmanship Division of BEST offers contests for participants to showcase their abilities and talents outside of the ring. This year, the program hosted four different contests: Prepared Speaking, Salesmanship, Cattlemen’s Challenge, Fitting Contest, and Judging Contest. This year’s overall Stockmanship winners were:

Beginner Division: Champion – Natalie Atterholt, Ashland County; Reserve Champion – Kasen Cole, Preble County

Junior Division: Champion – Kalli Atterholt, Ashland County; Reserve Champion – Cassidy Harris, Preble County

Novice Division: Champion – Ruger White, Ashland County; (TIE) Reserve Champion – Claire Atterholt, Ashland County and Reserve Champion – Kelsey Kaeser, Ashland County

Intermediate Division: (TIE) Champion – Emma Lewis, Lorain County and Champion – Maci Atterholt, Ashland County; Reserve Champion – Sadie Moore, Fairfield County

 Senior Division: Champion – Tatumn Poff, Geauga County; Reserve Champion – Madisen Jolliff, Hardin County.

Show results final standings and more BEST results are available at: ohiocattle.org/best/best-updates. 

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