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Careerline Tech students score big wins at Ottawa County Fair

The Holland Sentinel • Aug 15, 2018 at 2:00 PM

Careerline Tech students had another year of big wins in the Ottawa County Fair’s 4-H/Future Farmers of America competition July 23-28.

The biggest win of the week was CTC student and Unity Christian junior Lauren Zeinstra, who was named the Grand Champion of the market class with her feeder calf. Zeinstra also took first place in the feeder calf market class, which judges winners based on meat quality.

It’s the first time a Careerline Tech student has won Grand Champion feeder calf.

“Having one of our students win Grand Champion is quite an honor since only one is awarded in each category at the fair,” said Tony McCaul, agriculture and animal science instructor at Careerline Tech.

Careerline Tech students swept the rest of the ribbons in market class as well.

Coopersville junior Kyle McDonald took first place in the pig market class while Grand Haven junior Riley Rademaker placed second and third. Coopersville senior Taylor Russell placed second in feeder calf market class and Coopersville junior Leah Russell placed third.

Two Careerline Tech students also scored ribbons in showmanship, which judges how well a person shows their animal. Hudsonville senior Tanya Gibbs and West Ottawa senior Tom Yonker placed second and third, respectively in feeder calf showmanship.

Careerline Tech students also placed second in “club herd”, a group of four animals from the same herd. Other CTC students who competed at the fair were senior homeschooled student Lauren VanKints, Grand Haven senior Clarissa Cherry and Unity Christian junior Erin Graveling.

McCaul noted these students sign up in January for the June show and make a large time commitment, even coming in during the summer to practice and finding a place to board and care for their animal until the fair.

This year, the animals sold for a total of $8,000. The money earned goes back to pay feed and animal expenses. Any remaining profit will go back to the chapter and the students for their work and time.

“Showing at the Ottawa County Fair is a great opportunity for the students to gain real world, hands-on experience raising and training an animal,” McCaul said.

“This project has helped develop record-keeping and marketing skills that are needed in the agriculture industry and will help them in their careers after high school.”

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