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Show A Family Affair

August 5, 2011

Staff photo/Beth Lipton: Ali Murr takes part in the Beef Breeding and Feeder Calf Show at the Auglaize County Fair Wednesday.

WAPAKONETA — For Ali Murr, showing her animals in the Junior Fair Beef Breeding and Feeder Calf Show at the Auglaize County Fair is in the family.

Murr, 16, of Waynesfield, showed several cattle Wednesday afternoon in the Junior Fair competition. She has been showing cattle for 11 years, and said she got involved in 4-H after watching her older sister.

“My sister showed here (at the Auglaize County Fair),” she said. “She’s out of 4-H now, since she’s 21.”

Murr said she has had a busy schedule showing her animals.

“We just showed at the state fair last week,” she said. “We’re actually heading back to state fair next week.”

Although raising cattle is in the family, Murr said she also enjoys the animals.

“I love showing cattle,” Murr said.

“I show all types of livestock — sheep, cattle. It’s what I do and it’s all I do.”

Murr said to prepare for shows, she does a lot of work at home.

“You have to do your homework at home before a show,” she said, noting that she works on her cattle’s hair and works with them on showmanship.

Murr noted that preparation at home is the key to success in showing the animals.

“I just stay calm and remember what I worked with them on at home,” she said of her strategy in the ring.

For Kathryn Elshoff, 10, of St. Marys, showing 4-H projects also runs in the family.

“All of my brothers were actually doing 4-H and I wanted to get involved,” Elshoff said.

Now in her second year of showing, Elshoff said the hardest part was training her calf because he can be stubborn at times.

“The first time you walk him, he doesn’t know what to do,” Elshoff said. “He was really stubborn but once you teach them, they know what to do.”

Murr also noted that the cattle can be stubborn.

“(The hardest part is) probably training them as babies,” Murr said. “Teaching them to set up and lead can be hard. They’re stubborn as babies. You have to teach them.”

Elshoff said she has enjoyed her time working with her calf.

“The best part is getting to know your calf better and getting to try to win prizes,” she said.

Murr said being a member of 4-H has taught her a lot of qualities that will be useful in her future, and it has been the most beneficial part of showing her animals.

“You learn responsibility, respect toward others, leadership and ethics,” she said.

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