The premium auction is a form of donation, explained Mineral Wells Young Farmer's committee member Stephanie White. She said bidders contribute funds to help the youth out with their projects.
In addition to Herring and Rico, other top honors at this year's livestock show went to:
• Jake Dudley, of Graford 4H, who won grand champion with his lamb, sponsored by the Graford Fair and Livestock Association for $2,500. Reserve champion lamb went to Callie Wharton, of Santo 4H, sponsored by the Business Groups of Santo for $1,200.
• Zane Mauney, of Santo 4H, took both grand champion and reserve champion prizes for goats this year. High bids on both animals went to the Business Groups of Santo for $3,000 and $1,200, respectively. However, Mauney donated his reserve-champion bid back so other youth could benefit in the auction action.
• Mackenzee Burton's swine won grand champion and sold for $1,000 to Jerry Durant. Reserve champion swine went to Ashley Durst's animal, which Mr. Jim's Pizza purchased for $400. Both are members of Sturdivant 4H.
• Jacob Molder, of Santo 4H, won grand champion single rabbit, which sold for $1,000 to Capital Farm Credit. Terra Newsom, of Sturdivant 4H, took reserve champion in the rabbit division. Newsom's rabbit sold for $400 to David and Karyn Bullock.
In addition to Graford, Santo and Palo Pinto County buyers syndicates, Lee said there were several other premium-auction bidders, including banks, businesses, clubs and individuals, which helped sponsor winning youth.
Ryan Roach, a long-time participant in FFA who showed animals for 10 years at Santo, said this was his first time purchasing animals for a local service organization.
“Each community's support was obvious,” he said. “And I would hope, in the future, that the Mineral Wells community could be more active in purchasing animals.”
Two reserve-champion breed steers – both raised and prepped by Mineral Wells students and that went relatively early in the auction order – brought $500 each at Saturday's auction.