Friday is chock-full of dairy judging at the 96th Pennsylvania Farm Show. While the state’s youth make it look easy to Farm Show visitors, dairy showmanship is actually hard work. “They can be stubborn at times, but usually just by making some noises or getting their attention… they’ll usually go,” Stephanie Stahl of Somerset County says of maneuvering her dairy cows for the judges.
Working with Stephanie is Chelsea Berkebile of Somerset County, who stresses the importance of keeping your eyes on the judges at all time. “You always want to move out of the way as they’re moving around, so they can see the animal at their best.” Hopefully, all of the hard work they do with the animals at home will pay off in the arena.
Some dairy showmen are better than others, however. “I’ve learned a full appreciation for those who raise the animal, and take care of the animal seven days a week,” says Columbia County State Rep. Dave Millard, a three-time participant in the Farm Show’s Legislative Dairy Showmanship Contest. “I do my best at it, but I’ve never come away with a first, second or third place.”
State Rep. Mike Tobash of Berks and Schuylkill counties took home top honors in the 2012 legislative showcase. Farm Show judges will wrap up their evaluations of hundreds of dairy cattle later this afternoon. You’ll be able to look up the Supreme Champion, and check on all of the results at the Farm Show’s website. The 96th Pennsylvania Farm Show will come to a close at 5pm Saturday.