AmericanFarm.com

Md. juniors make mark showing in Nebraska

By REBECCA LONG CHANEY
AFP Correspondent

GRAND ISLAND, Neb. (July 14, 2015) — Maryland Junior Hereford breeders headed west last week for their Junior National Hereford Expo, traveling 1,400 miles to the Corn Husker state to make new friends, exhibit their Hereford cattle and compete in 23 skilled junior events.
More than 800 junior members from 39 states exhibited 2,000 head of cattle.
A highlight of the week was Maryland Jr. Advisor Michelle Grimmel Wolfrey being honored as the Junior Advisor of the Year by the National Hereford Junior Association. “I am so unbelievably honored and humbled to receive this recognition,” Mrs. Wolfrey said. “I am very grateful for all of the thanks and appreciation my state gives me, but to have it recognized on the national level is just overwhelming!”
Wolfrey has been a junior advisor for 10 years and is known for sending out “e-mail blasts” to keep the Maryland Hereford youth informed and excited about raising Hereford cattle. She said she is not an advisor for recognition or awards — “We do it for the kids.”
Hailing from Jarrettsville, Wolfrey works hard to help every Maryland youth participating in the JNHE to succeed. “Out of 39 states that attended the JNHE, Maryland was the 2nd smallest by square miles, yet we were one of the bigger states in attendance by number of entries,” she pointed out. “This is something I am very proud of!”
In 2014 the JNHE was held in Harrisburg, Pa., and Maryland was one of the host states. Maryland had a record number of Hereford youth participate last year according to Wolfrey and she believes that inspired many to want to come to Nebraska this year. Maryland had 21 juniors exhibiting 34 Herefords.
“Having Junior Nationals so close to home last year gave so many more kids the ability to participate for the first time,” she said. “Many of the kids told me they had the best week of their lives in Harrisburg and planned all year to make the trip the Nebraska. Normally, when the show is so far out west, only five to 10 kids with 15 to 20 head travel to Junior Nationals. This year we doubled our numbers.”
It is evident Wolfrey loves her position as junior advisor as she watches Juniors exhibit. “I still cannot believe they nominated me!” she said. “I am so thankful they took the time to send in letters. We have a great group of kids, parents, and co-advisors in Maryland. Everyone is so willing to help out and step up when needed. It really shows when we are at Junior Nationals.
“We are one of the only states that is stalled as one uniform group. All the kids help each other.”
Several Maryland juniors took home top honors at the national event. Christopher Shelton of Frederick exhibited the reserve grand champion steer. First time exhibiter Tate Bittner of Westminster was the reserve champion junior showman.
Karson Fahey of New Windsor was the 5th overall junior showman. Melissa Grimmel of Jarrettsville was 3rd overall in the senior showmanship competition. Kaylie Shelton of Frederick placed 10th overall in the peewee showman division.
Mason Foster of Millers placed 5th overall in the carcass steer contest, Melissa Grimmel placed 3rd overall in the carcass contest, and Rianna Chaney, formerly of Thurmont, placed 10th in the carcass steer contest.
The junior quiz bowl team of Jason Baust of Rocky Ridge, Ian Forbes of Churchville, Karson Fahey and Ella Jacobs of Frederick made it to the buzzer round. In the judging contest, the intermediate Maryland team took 3rd place. Team members were Kendall Harshman of Frederick, Nick Bohrer of Damascus and Wyatt Debnam of Gaithersburg.
The Outstanding Junior Member was Ian Forbes. Maryland Hereford royalty attended the National Queen’s tea. They were Katelyn Williams of Jefferson, Maryland Hereford Princess; and Ella Jacobs, Maryland Hereford Junior Princess.
Melissa Grimmel did well in the senior photography competition. She was 1st in cattle, 2nd in Hereford enhanced and 3rd in Hereford people. She also won senior individual sales, was the Junior Merit Scholarship winner and was the 2nd place high point senior for the Walter & Joe Lewis Memorial Award.
Other Maryland exhibitors included Izzy Bohrer, Breck Debnam of Gaithersburg, Madisson Foster of Millers, Tess Gavagan of Mount Airy, Madelyn Grimmel of Jarrettsville, Chad Shelton of Frederick, Holly Shelton of Frederick, Tori Shumaker of Boyds, Kim Snader of New Windsor and Katelyn Williams of Jefferson.
The Junior National Hereford Expo is set for July 9 to the 16, 2016 in Madison, Wisconsin. For complete show results visit, Hereford.org and click on complete show results.