Johnson earns Show­case ti­tle

Times-Record - - Front Page - By DUSTIN HOLT dholt@ches­

DEN­TON — Caro­line County 4-H’er Ben Johnson won the 2017 Elite Premier Show­case ti­tle, Fri­day, Aug. 4, at the Caro­line-Dorch­ester County Fair at the Caro­line 4-H Park near Den­ton.

Johnson, 13, is a mem­ber of the Pure Coun­try 4-H Club, and he beat North Caro­line High stu­dents El­iz­a­beth Ross and Caro­line Saathoff in the four-round live­stock han­dling show­case. Johnson earned a trip to the show­case by win­ning the beef and sheep shows while Ross ad­vanced by win­ning the goat show and Saathoff used her vic­tory in the pig show to make the show­case.

“I’m very happy to win to­day,” said Johnson who has been work­ing on the farm since he was 5 years old. “It is a lot of fun learn­ing the dif­fer­ent an­i­mals. They have dif­fer­ent per­son­al­i­ties, and it is neat to work with each.”

Dur­ing the elite show­case, the trio showed pigs, cows, goats and sheep, and an­swered agri­cul­ture ques­tions asked by judge Scott Wright.

“Ben was very thor­ough in all four classes,” Wright said. “Each stood out in the classes

they won, but Ben was re­ally strong in the classes he was not as fa­mil­iar with. He was al­ways com­fort­able with the an­i­mals. He never got too ner­vous. He stayed re­laxed. He was right there where he needed to be, and that is what kept him at the top of all the classes.

“All the can­di­dates did an out­stand­ing job,” he said. “You can see they have worked hard to un­der­stand­ing each an­i­mal, even if the an­i­mal is not the pri­mary one they show. What I like best is they all did re­ally well work­ing in less than per­fect sit­u­a­tions with a lot of un­knowns about the other an­i­mals they are not fa­mil­iar with.”

Saathoff’s berth in the Elite Premier Show­case was her third time since 2013.

Ross is a mem­ber of the Caro­line County FAA. The group had seven mem­bers show­ing an­i­mals with 10 hogs and four goats.

Caro­line County FFA Ad­vi­sor Jodi Cal­la­han said she is proud of her FFA stu­dents for all the hard work they put into the fair and through­out the school year.

The fair was held from Wed­nes­day, Aug. 2, to Satur­day, Aug. 5, and gives 4-H’ers a com­pre­hen­sive com­pe­ti­tion to show­case their agri­cul­tural dis­plays, live­stock and pet projects, as well as their bak­ing, can­ning, culi­nary and sewing skills. The 4-H fair also pro­vides a means of ed­u­cat­ing the pub­lic of the im­por­tance of farm­ing to the na­tion and the hard work and tal­ents that go into it.

The Caro­line County Cham­ber of Com­merce, along with the Dorch­ester County Cham­ber of Com­merce, helped open the fair on Wed­nes­day. Ad­mis­sion Wed­nes­day was free cour­tesy of the cham­bers.

The 4-H and FFA ex­hibits were fea­tured through­out the fair in the main build­ing, with all the win­ners on dis­play.

The fair also fea­tured the cake auc­tion on open­ing night, kids day on Thurs­day, dress a goat con­test on Fri­day and a baby con­test on Satur­day. The event cul­mi­nated with a live­stock auc­tion Satur­day and a con­cert fea­tur­ing Small Town Show­down.

For more in­for­ma­tion about the Caro­line-Dorch­ester County Fair, visit www. caro­line-dorch­ester­coun­ty­


Caro­line County 4-H’er Ben Johnson holds the tro­phy af­ter win the 2017 Elite Premier Show­case ti­tle Fri­day, Aug 4, at the Caro­line-Dorch­ester County Fair.


Caro­line County 4-H’er Ben Johnson holds the tro­phy af­ter win the 2017 Elite Premier Show­case ti­tle Fri­day, Aug 4, at the Caro­line-Dorch­ester County Fair. He com­peted against Caro­line Saathoff, right, and El­iz­a­beth Ross. Scott Wright, left, was the...

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