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El Capitan FFA Has Successful Week at Merced County Fair

By Branyon Bliss

El Capitan FFA Chapter Reporter


Forty-three El Capitan High School FFA members participated in the Merced County Fair Livestock Show which took place June 4th-11th. Students purchased livestock throughout the months of November through February, and worked hard to ensure their animals were of market ready quality by fair. FFA member Anissa Walker said, “I purchased my market lamb in late January, since then, I have been walking, feeding, and watering my lamb daily, while making sure he lived in a clean and safe environment. This took a ton of time, but I learned so many valuable lessons and life skills. I am proud of myself for taking on this challenge.” It was evident that all students went above and beyond to get their animals ready for the fair, as all students were successful in the show and sale. Students raised animals in the areas of beef cattle, dairy cattle, market goats, dairy goats, sheep, swine, rabbits, poultry and mechanics. 


Students showed their animal in a market or breeding class and a showmanship class. In the market or breeding classes, animals were judged on their appearance and ability to provide a quality product or offspring. In showmanship students were judged on their performance when showing their livestock animals. 


Isela Gonzalez showed a commercial heifer and received first place Senior Yearling Commercial Heifer. In the dairy show, Henry Pareira won 4th place advanced showmanship, Reserved Grand Champion Replacement Heifer, Supreme Champion Junior Female. Makayla Ward won 2nd place novice showmanship and 11th place advanced showmanship. Jordan Garcia was 5th place in novice showmanship. 


In the goat show, Riley Delworth won 1st in her class and Jetzbie Nunez-Higuerda was 2nd in her.  Isela Gonzalez won Reserve FFA Market Goat. Makayla Hemphill was 1st Place in Novice Dairy Goat Showman. All other goat exhibitors placed respectively in their classes.


Sheep exhibitors included Anissa Walker, Lorelei Cook and Jordan Garcia.  Anissa Walker won Reserve Champion Natural Market Lamb, Lorelei Cook won Reserve Champion White Faced Crossbred Lamb and made novice showmanship finals. Jordan Garcia was 3rd in his AOB class. 


The swine group had a very successful week with Joshua Col placing Reserve FFA Champion, 5th in Advanced Showmanship, and Champion Purebred Gilt. Dylan Robinson won FFA Reserve Champion AOB and 2nd in Novice Showmanship. Berlin Saxton placed 2nd in class and made final drive for champion Durocs.


The El Capitan HS agriculture advisors are very proud of how much work their students put into their projects. Their hard work and dedication showed throughout the fair. The livestock team and advisors would also like to thank the outstanding Merced County community for their support in the livestock auction. All students were not only able to cover all expenses of their projects, but received additional profit to aid in further development of future livestock projects. Their support has led to valuable life skills for our students and funds to support their futures. 

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