ELIZABETHTOWN, Pa. — Collin Weaver, Elizabethtown Fair’s 2012 supreme market champion, dropped off his trophy at the judging table, but it was quickly returned to him Aug. 21.
For the second straight year, Weaver showed a market lamb that topped the best beef steer, dairy beef, goat, pig and rabbit basket as rated by a panel of six judges, one for each species.
Weaver also won for the best pair of lambs and took the showmanship award. He also showed pigs this year.
Jared Long, the beef steer champion, and Summer Neideigh, the dairy beef winner, joined Weaver in winning their categories for the second straight year.
Raising and showing animals is a family activity for the Weavers, who own about 100 animals, including beef, pigs and sheep, in the Palmyra area. Collin and both of his brothers showed this year. The Weavers’ sheep are all naturally bred.
The farm is a multigenerational effort, as his parents and grandfather are all involved.
“It’s fun. It’s a lot of time with family,” Weaver said. “Some kids would consider it sacrificing friend time,” but Weaver said he enjoys meeting new people and helping the younger exhibitors.
Weaver has been working with animals since he was 3 or 4 years old, and his competitive spirit has served him well in the ring.
“I enjoy being out there,” he said.
Besides his success on the sawdust, Weaver has also shown flashes of mechanical ingenuity. A few years ago he and some buddies rigged up a pipe across the back of the bagging attachment of a riding lawn mower.
They affixed chains and, driving very slowly, used the mower as a labor-saving way to walk the sheep.
That interest in machines is serving Weaver well at Lebanon County Career and Technology Center, where he is a junior studying diesel mechanics.
Asked if he wanted to use his skills on road trucks or farm machinery, Weaver said he’s “keeping my options open.”
Along with being a mechanic, Weaver hopes to own a farm after school.
At the sale after the awards ceremony, Weaver’s champion lamb sold to R.K. Vogt for $1,500. Kylie Costik’s reserve champion went to Rockvale Outlets for $1,000.
Jared Long’s beef steer went to S. Jay Williams Excavating Inc. for $3,900. Reserve champion Hayden Remsburg sold her animal to Hoss’s Steak & Sea House for $2,600.
R.K. Vogt bought Summer Neideigh’s champion dairy beef for $1,100. Geib’s Livestock Hauling bought the reserve champion from Travis Dull for the same amount.
Emma Musser got $1,400 from Hostetter and Hostetter CPA for her champion hog. Faith Musser’s grandparents, Harold and Judy Musser, bought the reserve champion hog from her for $1,450.
The top goat, from Jacob Armold, went to Witman Custom Farming for $1,000. Daniel Longenecker’s second-place goat was bought by Weaver Insurance for $650.
Colin Mowrer picked up $275 from Skyward Bound Farm for his champion rabbits. Runner-up Jeremy Algoe got $125 from Katina Musser of Re/Max.