Defiance County youth had a successful 2018-19 BEST season and were recognized during the annual BEST banquet. Shown are, from left: Logan Schroeder, Zach Retcher, Brock Retcher and Mallory Peter.

MARYSVILLE — The 2018-19 Ohio Cattlemen’s Association (OCA) BEST (Beef Exhibitor Show Total) program came to an end with its annual awards banquet held at the Ohio Expo Center in Columbus.

This season celebrated the 20th year of the BEST program.

“This year celebrates the 20th anniversary of the BEST program,” said Stephanie Sindel, OCA director of youth programs. “Throughout the years, the committee’s focus has been to keep a progressive, family engaged program while utilizing cattle as a tool to help educate and raise the next generation of leaders. The BEST program boasts numerous successful professionals that have walked through the ring at BEST shows.”

Several representatives from program sponsors were on hand to help present awards, totaling more than $60,000 in belt buckles, luggage, show materials and other awards.

The BEST Sponsoring Partners for 2018-19 were Ag-Pro – John Deere, Bob Evans Farms, M.H. EBY, Frazier Farms, Farm Credit Mid–America, Garwood Cattle Co. LLC, Kalmbach Feeds – Formula of Champions and Weaver Leather Livestock.

“The banquet is a time to celebrate the many achievements of our BEST participants, both in and out of the show ring,” said Sindel. “Each participant is recognized for their hard work by family, friends and BEST supporters alike.”

This year’s BEST program featured 15 sanctioned shows that wove their way across the state. More than 431 youth participants showed 618 head of market animals and heifers throughout the course of the 2018-19 program.

Gift Certificate Winners

Jacob Wiechart, Putnam County, won the drawing for a $500 gift certificate toward the purchase of his next show animal or show supplies from an OCA member, BEST sponsoring partner or OCA Allied Industry Council member.

Photography Contest

This year’s photography contest had top-notch entries encompassing four divisions: BEST Shows and Activities, Landscapes, People and Around the Farm.

Three winners were awarded in each age division and an Editor’s Choice and Editor’s Choice Honorable Mention were selected from all submissions. The winners were as follows:

First place intermediate – Brock Retcher, Defiance County.

Honorable mention, first place intermediate – Brock Retcher, Defiance County.

Heifer and Market Animal Champions

Reserve champion Chianina steer – Zachery Retcher, Defiance County.

Fifth overall MaineTainer heifer (tie) – Reed Schumacher, Putnam County.

Reserve champion Maine-Anjou steer (tie) – Mallory Peter, Defiance County.

Reserve champion shorthorn steer – Logan Schroeder, Defiance County.

Reserve champion market heifer – Collin Fedderke, Henry County.

Fourth overall market heifer – Riley Schumacher, Putnam County.

Fifth overall market heifer – Zachery Retcher, Defiance County.

BEST Novice Champions

Eighth overall novice heifer – Reed Schumacher, Putnam County – (MaineTainer).

Ninth overall novice heifer (tie) – Cade Carlin, Williams County (high percentage all other breeds).

10th overall novice heifer – Sydney Kleman, Putnam County (ShorthornPlus).

Market Animals

Seventh overall novice steer – Riley Schumacher, Putnam County (market heifer).

BEST Bred & Owned Champions

Fourth overall bred and owned heifer – Cole Carlin, Williams County (MaineTainer).

BEST Showmanship Winners

10th overall beginner showman – Cade Carlin, Williams County.

Fifth overall junior showman – Logan Schroeder, Defiance County.

Champion novice showman – Sydney Kleman, Putnam County.

Ninth overall intermediate showman – Mallory Peter, Defiance County.

Sixth overall senior showman – Zachery Retcher, Defiance County.

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