Why showing cattle matters.

There are some that say showing cattle isn't important.

They'll say it isn't reflective of our industry, that it doesn't teach kids about commercial operations, etc.

To that - I'd respectfully disagree.

Showing cattle matters. 

Because it helps create & shape youth that matter.

Kids that show cattle can load up a trailer, and set off to a show halfway across the country by themselves, because they know how to care for their livestock, and budget their money so they still have enough for diesel on the way home.

They wake up early before school, to feed and care for their animals.

They stay up late in the evenings working hair, feeding rations and making sure their steer is rinsed one more time before they head to bed.

They know how to win humbly, and lose graciously.

They know how to respect others.

They know how to receive critique, how to ask questions, and how to push just a little bit longer.

They know how to evaluate their own cattle and others; and how to defend themselves verbally in front of a judge.  

They know that one little tweak in the showring can be the difference between a championship slap....or nothing.

They know that whether you placed first or last....you still need to shake the judge's hand.

They know that those around them are trying to beat them in the ring....but when they walk out that gate, if a fellow showman needed the proverbial shirt off of their back, they'd hand it to them in a heartbeat. 

They know what it's like to chase the purple.


We help with a few shows a year, and while we don't have kids ourselves, we know how important it is to provide opportunities for kids and young adults to show their livestock.

Why?  Because they're our future.  More importantly, they are agriculture's future. 

And for them, the experience of showing cattle matters.

And making kids feel like they matter; well....it needs to matter to us.

Let's make sure these kids know that they matter.

Success is reason enough.


  1. Great blog post. Agree on all points. I do wish that the show circuit was less trendy than it is and more in line with production side. But as a producer, its just another lesson that we teach our kids. There are so many great things that kids just seem to automatically learn in participating in a livestock project. I am very glad that my four kids are doing just that.

  2. Great post! Shared on facebook a couple places. :) Growing up and showing...my friend's mom always had a response to parents who griped about the cost of showing cattle, "cheaper than rehab, and much more enjoyable!"

  3. Awesome post, Darcy! Your words and thoughts are very true and passionate.

    I grew up showing cattle and sheep and am a third generation showman. There is no better way to raise a family.

    I have not been in the show ring or barn since my Sister got out of FFA. I miss it terribly.

  4. Alice Weldy LehmanAugust 06, 2013

    I remember those days so well, showing Guernseys at county, state and national shows,rewarding and challenging

  5. This is fantastic! Making a difference in the lives of kids is something both you & Clint do best!

    Thanks for always promoting success! It is reason enough!

  6. Nice! Grabs the very core of keeping all the Youth Livestock Shows no matter what species!

  7. Great post. Showing taught me so many life lessons, and it is molding our young people in agriculture!

  8. Such a great post! Many lessons learned before, during and after the show ring. Nothing like showing cattle to teach kids about life!

  9. Awesome. I just wish more parents would let the kids really learn to do all the planning,budgeting,selection , grooming etc that must be done outside the ring to be successful inside the ring. Banners fade, buckles tarnish , and even the best cattle pass away but the lessons learned, friendships established and memories made will last a lifetime.

  10. I would have been emotionally disabled without the sacrifices my dad made to give me great training for life in showing Milking Shorthorn cattle. Color me forever blessed for the wonderful experiences that still strengthen me today!

  11. Erica BoyerJanuary 27, 2014

    Thank you! This is a great post and captures the most important lessons we are teaching our youth in junior livestock shows.


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