XENIA — Showmanship at the Greene County Fair is supposed to be more about the 4-H kid, and less about the animal.
But for Gracie Barron, all the focus was on her heifer, Petals, after winning the beginner showmanship Saturday.
“Her mom is a herd mom,” the bubbly Barron said. “(Petals) hardly got any milk. She was super tiny. She has come a long way from that, I’m just so proud of her.”
Barron, 11, has been showing animals at the fair since she was 5-years-old and won a showmanship two years ago. But clearly this one meant so much, as evidenced by the little jump and spin she did right before posing for a photo with Petals.
“At home she was crazy,” Barron said. “(In the ring) she was being so good. I think she just did a great job. It’s not so much me. It’s her. I’m going to spend the whole day with her. She deserves it.”
Barron didn’t do too badly herself, either. The member of Barnyard Kids 4-H and Greeneview fifth grader beat a talented group of seven others, some of whom had some rather uncooperative cattle.
“It was going crazy,” Barron said. “I was looking back and forth. I just had to keep my eye on the judge. It was confusing.”
— Brandon Barr had a pretty good Saturday with his shorthorn heifer, winning the senior showmanship, which due to size required two classes and a final drive. He also had the champion breeding heifer and had a total of three first-place finishes.
“A good day,” the 18-year-old Beavercreek High School senior said. “She was looking good. We knew we had a shot. There’s some good competition. We’ve got two real nice heifers in that pen. We were real happy.”
Barr, a member of Husky Hustlers 4-H, had a pretty good blueprint for success.
“You always want to get the animal set up,” he said. “You want to make her look as good as you can. If everything is perfect … you’ve got something good.”
But no matter how prepared anyone is, success is largely determined by the judge, according to Barr.
“One person’s opinion on one day is how you’re going to do,” he said.
— Molly Mossing took the latest round in the budding rivalry with her friend, Sydnee Hawkins, in the intermediate showmanship.
“We always go head-to-head and it’s fun every year,” Mossing said. “We usually split (who wins). It’s turning into a competition. But it’s friendly.”
The difference on Saturday?
“Her calf was not cooperating with her,” Mossing, 14, said. “Mine had a good day today.”
Mossing, a freshman at Cedarville High School and member of Prime Producers 4-H, will be moving up to the senior class next year.
“It feels like we’re going out right,” she said.
Mossing will have another year with her steer, which she hopes will have a somewhat different look for next year’s competition.
“He needs to get a lot bigger,” Mossing said.
Contact Scott Halasz at 937-502-4507.