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Sparks Sweeps Her Competition

by Carolina Keegan

Published: Friday, August 12, 2022

Kyla Sparks of Cassopolis left the Cass County (Mich.) Fair in Cassopolis with two major accomplishments this year.

Sparks showed the grand champion dairy market steer and sold it last Thursday for $4,500 or $3 per pound to Mike Breisch, who was buying for Harford Glass of Mishawaka, and for the Happy 70th Birthday Mary group. Mary is his wife. The steer weighed 1,500 pounds.

Sparks also won champion beef showmanship last Wednesday and top showman honors on Friday evening, having won the showmanship sweepstakes.

Evan Kniss of Niles exhibited the reserve champion and sold the 1,440-pounder to Mickey Thomas of Christianson Industries; Tom Hill of Hill Excavation Inc.; and Chuck Wimberly of C Wimberly Auto Group Ford for $3 per pound, or $4,520.

A total of 326 lots sold for $558,190.40 at the 4-H large animal auction. At the small animal auction, 362 lots sold, raking in $140,440. In total, 688 lots brought in $698,630.40. Last year, $559,626.15 was generated by 580 lots.

Jena Bradley of Cassopolis sold the grand champion market beef steer to Hibshman Screw Machine Products of Union for $3 per pound. Her steer weighed 1,225 pounds, bringing the total to $3,675.

The reserve champion market beef steer was shown by Josie Lock of Cassopolis. She sold the 1,305-pounder to Tom Fox of Fish Head Farms; Collin and Nick Dussel of Soil Production Solutions; Mark Dussel of Dussel's Farm Market; and Bender Electric for $5 per pound, or $6,851.25.

The grand champion market heifer was exhibited by Jackson Whitmyer of Cassopolis. He sold it for $2.50 per pound, or $3,125. It weighed 1,250 pounds. Louisa Peterson of Niles was the exhibitor of the 1,070-pound reserve champion market heifer, which sold for $3 per pound. Kevin Hershberger of Kelsey Lake Farms was the buyer and paid a total of $2,330.

Brianna Stockwell of Dowagiac sold her grand champion beef feeder to Al Vary of Charter Oak, Iowa for $5,650, or $10 per pound. It weighed 565 pounds.

In beef, 63 lots sold for a total of $214,137.25.

Grace Strukel of Cassopolis exhibited the grand champion dairy feeder, which weighed 600 pounds. It sold to Kevin Hershberger for $2,850, or $4.75 per pound. The reserve champion dairy feeder was sold by Mary Tharp of Niles to Emily McCloughlin for $1.60 per pound. Weighing 500 pounds, it fetched $800 for Tharp.

A total of $84,456 was raked in by 69 lots of dairy feeders.

The gallon of milk was sold by the dairy club for $15,529 to a group of 140 buyers (see list at end of story). Alaina Peterson of Dowagiac was the grand champion overall in dairy.

Rowan Lwaniuk of Niles sold his grand champion market hog to Michele Harlow, representing Bender Electric and Taylor Baker of Community Mills for $10 per pound. The gilt was 260 pounds and brought in a total of $3,100.

Katherine Gregory of Edwardsburg exhibited the reserve champion market hog. She sold the 240-pound gilt for $4 a pound ($960) to Cody Harold of Crystal Flash.

The 258-pound grand champion barrow was exhibited by Blake Hartsell of Cassopolis. It sold for $3,483 or $13.50 per pound, to Jason Bentzer, Keith and Karen Hartsell, Jeff Tolbert and Michele Harlow, representing Bender Electric.

Stockwell sold the reserve champion barrow. It weighed 239 pounds and sold for $956 ($3.50 per pound) to Cody Harold of Crystal Flash.

There were 137 lots of swine, which sold for $200,815.90.

Bradley also sold the grand champion market lamb, a 150-pound wether that brought $4,350, or $29 per pound, from a group of buyers (see list).

The reserve champion market lamb was exhibited by Anastasia Peterson of Niles and sold for $15 per pound, raking in $1,936.75. A group of seven buyers (see list) bought the 127-pounder, which was also the grand champion ewe.

The reserve champion wether weighed 143 pounds and sold to John Baker of Elk Park Feed Store for $357.50, or $2.50 per pound. Katherine Gregory of Edwardsburg was the exhibitor. Sparks sold the reserve champion ewe for $21 per pound to Bender Electric and Jeremiah and Mackenzie Hartsell. Her ewe weighed 109 pounds, fetching $2,289.

Fifty-six lots sold for a total of $41,400.25 in lamb sales.

In the small animal sale, 75 lots of goats sold for $42,765, 169 rabbits sold for $55,220 and 193 lots of poultry sold for $42,455.

The grand champion meat goat was exhibited by Adam Starr of Niles. He sold to Barbie Starr of the Adam Starr Buyer's Club, the Doris Hartsell family, and Cassie and Ralph Conrod of R&C Farms, earning $3,300.

Chase Johnson of Edwardsburg sold the reserve champion meat goat to Chad Trink of R&R Poultry and Rick Briney of R.B. Trucking for a total of $550.

Blane Belakovich of Dowagiac raked in $1,000 from his grand champion crossbred market goat. It sold to Denver Hendreick, who was buying for the B& L Buyer's Group; Hoosier Harley of Elkhart, Wise Choice; and Fox Lawn and Landscape, and Denver Hendreik. Avery Bergen of Vandalia sold the reserve champion goat to Jay and Suzy Suseland of Suseland Belgians for $650.

The grand champion dairy goat was exhibited by Madison Marshall of Lawton and sold to Jesse Lemon of Lemon's Lawn Care for $200. Noah Brenneman of Cassopolis sold the reserve champion to Dawn Baily for $300.

Olivia Stockwell of Dowagiac exhibited the champion fryer rabbit. It sold for $1,000 to Jon Blough of B&Q Machine Inc., Gene and Denise Stockwell family and Timothy Mead of R&M Manufacturing. Hudson Williams of Cassopolis raked in $600 from Karina Acevedo for her reserve champion fryer.

The grand champion roaster was sold to Mike Breisch of the Hartford Glass Buyer's Club for $500 by Adrian Edwards of Edwardsburg. Lilly Richmond, also of Edwardsburg, was the exhibitor of the reserve champion. She sold the roaster to Jon Blough of B&Q Machine Inc. for $550.

In poultry, Carter Newland of Three Rivers sold his grand champion market broiler to Community Mills for $550, and his reserve champion market broiler sold for $400 to Marcus File of Marc File Farms and Porky's.

The grand champion roaster was shown by Erionna Dussel of Cassopolis. She sold her lot to Jesse Lemon of Lemon's Lawn Care for $300. The reserve champion was sold by Seth Newland to Porky's for $500.

The grand champion market heavyweight sold for $300 to Keith and Monica Luke. Paul Thomas of Niles was the exhibitor. Tobin Solloway of Dowagiac exhibited the reserve champion market heavyweight, which sold to Wayne High of Wayne High Farms for $400.

A dozen eggs was sold to Tim Hulett of U.S. Business Systems for $900 by the poultry barn.

Adi Jones of Granger showed the grand champion goose. It sold for $425 to Jesse Lemon of Lemon's Lawn Care. Bridget Lemon of JB Game Birds bought the reserve champion goose from Kyleigh Stamper of White Pigeon for $500.

Mason Boyer of Vandalia exhibited the grand champion tom turkey. It sold for $850 to Porky's. Wyatt Wilson of Dowagiac sold the reserve champion tom turkey to Community Mills for $600.

The grand champion hen turkey was sold by Knox McCoy of Dowagiac to John and Amanda Solloway, Pat Dunifin, and Tina and Gary Solloway of Tina's Styling Salon for $750. Cheyenne Wilson showed the reserve champion hen turkey. It sold for $575 to 10 buyers (see list).

The grand and reserve champion ducks were sold by Kyleigh Stamper of White Pigeon and Taylor Devarona of Dowagiac. Stamper sold the grand champion to Community Mills for $300, and Devarona sold the reserve champion to Daryl Polmateer of Country Excavating and Gravel for $300 with a $50 add on.

Buyer's Groups

Dairy project support group: Randi Cady, We Got Milk; Tim Schug, TNL Farm; James Hershberger and family; Caitlin Harlow, Harlow House Beauty; Keith and Karen Hartsell; Dennis Dominiak, GreenMark Equipment Union; Jeremy McDonald, McDonald Underground; Jason Bentzer, Bentzer Inc.; Brian Wuthrich, Hahn Auction; Andy Ausra, Gold Coast Sales; Ben and Sheri Baker; Ben Waldschmidt, Waldschmidt Farms; Shane Shidler, Shane Shidler/Edward Jones; RJ and Samantha Lee and Katie and Cody Stick, Hillside Farms; Ryan McKenzie, McKenzie Farms; Innovative Fab LLC; Wendy and James Davis; Blake Hartsell; Kurt and Sara Hartsell; Sarah Northrup, Wolverine Mutual; Chad Geoit, Wilbur-Ellis; Walther Farms; H&H Feed and Grain; Cade and Eva Klein, Klein Seed Sales (Pioneer); Co-Alliance; Mike and Leslie Bradley; Adam Humbarger, Top Coat Powder Coating; Richie and Katie Hess; Brian and Alicia Stout; Hugh and Marie Fair; Matthew and Lauren Wilds; Nicki and Bubba Williams, Makg's; Gene and Deb Deubner, Quality Masonry; Dan Wyant, Edward Lowe Foundation; Lori Whitmyer, Edgewood Farms; Garry Fedore, Fedore Veterinary Services; Cassie and Ralph Conrod, R&C Farms; J&H Oil Co.; Adam and Ellie Starr, Rising Starr Farms; John Baker, Elk Park Feed Store; Dave and Monica Majewski; George Brossman family; Burt and Heidi Westphal; Josh Westphal and family. The Tone family, Tone's Trucking Inc.; Berrybrook Farms; Chuck Wimberly, C Wimberly Auto Group GMC; Porky's; Adam Dahlgren, Cass Construction; Dave and Cheryl Rogers family, Four Seasons Percherons; Gail VanderKolk, Burnips Equipment Co. Three Rivers; Lissa Carter, Carmac Reality; Ed Craig, Decatur Feed; Susan Coulston, Southwestern Michigan College; Stephanie and Brody Knepple; Kevin Hershberger, Kelsey Lake Farms; Chuck and Cindy Martensen; Colin Kelley; Dustin Harding; Jerry and Julie Bement family; Ausra Equipment & Supply Co.; Josh Hartman, Josh Hartman Farms; Dan Hershberger, Hershberger's Happy Acres; Sherriff Richard Behnke; Zac Lock; Wayne High, Wayne High Farms; Dave and Stacy High, High Quality Farms; Bob Hawkins, B&G Farms; Nick Seelye, Robinson-Seelye Farms; Christopher and Rachel Reed; Ed and Kelly Reed; Brett and Bailey Bowman; The Burgers, Oakwood Farms; Michael Freeman; John and Amanda Solloway; Steve and Amy Pike, Pikeview Belgians; Mike Breisch, Hartford Glass Buyers Club; Adam Deer, Red Bull Ranch; Matt and Randi Cady family; Kyle and Tiffany Majewski family; Jeff and Stacy Toy, Lake X-Ray Inc.; Zak Kretchman, Agrigold; Justin Dentler, Dentler Farms; Jim Leach, J.L. Landscaping; Edd's Supplies Inc.; Joe Sobieski; Daniel and Hailey Robson; Karter and Kaleigh Isabel; Isabel's Outdoor Lawncare; April Kelber; Bergman Vet Medical Center; Rebecca Luthringer, Fashion Gurlz; Conklin Farms; Jim Becraft, J. Becraft Family Cattle; Rebecca Luthringer, Sparkle Car Care Center; Bill and Diane Grabemeyer; Terry Ausra, Ausra Farms; Mickey Thomas, Christianson Industries; Terry Hertsel, Hardings Market; and Dave and Joyce Accoe, Dave's Quality Hay.

Grand champion market lamb support group: Leslie Bradley of Hibshman Screw Machine Products, Dave and Cherlyl Rogers of Four Seasons Percherons, Edd's Supplies Inc. of Shipshewana, Chuck Wimberly of C Wimberly Auto Group Ford, John Baker of Elk Park Feed Store, Paul and Kathy Sweitzer and Susan Coulston of Southwest Michigan College.

Reserve champion market lamb support group: Jeff Peterson of Peterson Farms, Matt and Kristin Asmus of Platinum Club Lambs, Mick and Theresa Heberling, Bender Electric, Susan Coulston of Southwestern Michigan College, Dave and Cheryl Rogers of Four Seasons Percherons and Gail VanderKolk of Burnips Equipment Co. Three Rivers.

Reserve champion hen turkey support group: Janie Reifenberg, Honor Credit Union of Dowagiac; Paul and Kathryn Kent; Keith and Monica Luke; Amanda Wilson; John Mengel, Smokin' Butcher; Flint and Penny Mengel, Mengel's Watercress Farm; Alex Wilson, Clover Machinery Movers; Everett Smith, E&R Barbeque; Keith Luke; and Nathon Wilson, Wilson's Ferrier Service.

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