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A double win at CCF 4-H/FFA cattle show

By Staff | Sep 24, 2016

CLAIRE CHRISTENSEN, 17, of Royal, holds Darla, left, and Alfalfa, the beef calves she brought to the Clay County Fair. Both animals won purple ribbons at the Iowa State Fair in July. Last week Darla was the champion, and Alfalfa was the reserve champion 4-H/FFA market beef animals at CCF.

SPENCER – In 2011 she was awarded grand champion market beef award at the Clay County Fair

In 2013 she won reserve grand champion market beef at CCF.

In 2016, she received both awards, bringing a pair of beefy calves to CCF. The female, Darla, won grand champion; and the male, Alfalfa, won reserve.

She said she always bring two beeves to a cattle show.

Claire Christensen, 17, of Royal, said she had no idea how well her calves would do at the fair when they first bought them in October 2015.

As CCF drew closer and the calves were showing well in other places, Christensen said she and her father, Tim, started thinking they might have something special for the CCF show.

And they did.

“My dad and I,” Christensen said, “were just trying to do our best.

“But we were prepared for it.”

She said the calves were housed in a cooling room during the summer to encourage hair growth which cattleman say makes the animals show better.

This is Christensen’s seventh year showing cattle as a 4-H’er.

Her family’s farm is primarily grain operation with just 4-H livestock around for Christensen and her brother. She also shows swine.

“We knew we had good animals,” said Tim Christensen, “when the calf we thought was the third best in the barn won the (CCF) preview show.”

But as for actual show day?

“You never know,” he said, because of the human factor of the judge.

But wins are rewards for the dedication of the youths, he said.

“The kids get up at 5:30 each morning to get (calves) fed and get them to lay down in their pens and grow hair.”

Later in the day, he said, its more feeding and walking – training the calves to lead by halter.

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