8/2/2014 7:00 AM
By Sue Bowman Southeastern Pa. Correspondent
LEBANON, Pa. — On an unusual July evening when unseasonably cool air brought out jackets and sweatshirts, something else unusual happened at the Lebanon Area Fair.
Eighteen-year-old Jonathan Beiler’s Holsteins took home both the junior supreme champion and supreme champion titles in the 4-H and FFA Youth Dairy Show.
A recent graduate of Lebanon Christian Academy who plans to pursue a college degree for a career as a dairy nutritionist, Beiler beat out a field of 15 other best-of-breed dairy contenders in both of the youth divisions to claim top honors.
While the exhibition of the 4-H and FFA’s best of each breed took place in the evening before a full house in the fairgrounds’ Senator Brightbill Arena, the Youth Dairy Show had been judged earlier in the day Tuesday.
Aaron Horst judged the color breeds, while Dave Castrogiovanni was the Holstein judge. During the awards, the youthful champion exhibitors from earlier in the day were introduced to the crowd as they walked their dairy animals around the arena’s perimeter.
Jonathan Beiler’s big night started when he was awarded a Lebanon Area Fair jacket in recognition of his 4-H Holstein junior champion — winter yearling heifer Rolling-Spring Dami Ease — being named junior supreme champion.
Beiler is from Fredericksburg and a member of the Northern Lebanon County 4-H Club. Ironically, the award was sponsored by his parents, Paul and Tina Beiler, so it was his father who presented him with the prize.
A short while later, Jonathan’s Bur-le-Acres Roy Relish became the recipient of the Dale Maulfair Jr. Memorial Award as the overall 4-H and FFA youth supreme champion of the 2014 Lebanon Area Fair.
Born on March 30, 2009, “Relish” was sired by Roy Lane Jordan out of Bur-Le Acres Sov Sophie. Previously, Relish had won a first place at the 2013 Lebanon Area Fair Open Show, first place junior and open reserve senior at the 2014 Pennsylvania Spring Show, and second place at the 2014 Junior New York Spring Show.
Beiler’s supreme champion victory brought him a large trophy and the right to have a gallon of his cow’s milk sold at auction. Auctioneer Harry Bachman called the bids, and in the end, Beiler earned $1,700, courtesy of buyer Morrissey Insurance Inc. of Ephrata, Pa.
Asked what he planned to do with the proceeds, Beiler answered without hesitation, “Invest in more show animals.”
Other awards announced during the Youth Dairy Show included the Katie Eckert Memorial Scholarship, in honor of the former Lebanon County Dairy Princess and member of 4-H and Northern Lebanon FFA who died in a 2007 automobile accident.
Her mother, Heidi Eckert, presented a $1,000 higher education scholarship to Kortney Balmer, a former Lebanon County Dairy Princess herself, as well as the 2013 Lebanon Area Fair Queen. The scholarship is funded by an annual quilt raffle at the fair.
Five 4-H members competed in the best-bred-and-owned dairy animal contest. Based on the project books they submitted, top honors went to Cortney Hostetter, who received a Lebanon Area Fair jacket courtesy of Morrissey Insurance for her Red and White heifer. Devon Hostetter and Madison Weaver tied for the runner-up spot.
As it turned out, the weather wasn’t the only thing that was cool for the Youth Dairy Show. A giant ice cream sundae was served outside the entrance to the arena. Originally scheduled for Sunday night, the popular sundae had been postponed by severe storms.<\c> Photos by Sue Bowman
From left, Lebanon Area Fair Queen Emily Bomgardner, Lil’ Dairy Miss MacKenzie Miller and Lebanon County Dairy Princess McKenzy Keener pose with Bur-Le-Acres Roy Relish, which took 4-H and FFA youth supreme champion for her owner, Jonathan Beiler of Fredericksburg, Pa. Beiler accepted the 2014 Dale Maulfair Jr. Memorial Trophy from Dale Maulfair Sr., right.
Kortney Balmer accepts congratulations from Heidi Eckert on winning the $1,000 Katie Eckert Memorial Scholarship. Eckert holds a photo of her late daughter, Katie.
Cortney Hostetter, right, displays the blue ribbon she earned for her best-bred-and-owned Red and White heifer. With her is Craig Morrissey of Morrissey Insurance Inc., sponsor of the award.