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Meet the champions

Here’s a look at the champion market animals at the Illinois State Fair, plus which ones will sell in Tuesday’s Sale of Champions.

Holly Spangler, Prairie Farmer Senior Editor

August 12, 2019

1 Min Read
steer show at Illinois State Fair
WINNER: Cole Caldwell, Peoria County, gets the winning slap as his crossbred steer is chosen grand champion steer for the 2019 Illinois State Fair. Caldwell’s steer will sell in the Sale of Champions on Aug. 13. Holly Spangler

The Illinois State Fair’s annual Parade of Champions emerged from the newly renovated Coliseum of Champions over the weekend with a new set of winners for 2019.

Each champion and Land of Lincoln champion will sell in the Governor’s Sale of Champions, which will take place at 5:30 p.m. Aug. 13 in the Coliseum. Here’s a look at the winners, with an asterisk designating those animals that will sell Aug. 13:

Overall Market Steer
*Champion: Cole Caldwell, Peoria County (Crossbred)
Reserve: Sam Nightingale, Henry County (Crossbred)
3rd: Kashen Ellerbrock, Henry County (AOB)
4th: Colton Baudino, Grundy County (AOB)
5th: Chet Gillespie, Stark County (Simmental)
*Land of Lincoln Champion: Tara Hummel, Kankakee County

Overall Market Barrow
*Champion: Claire Bobell, Logan County (Crossbred)
Reserve: Mitchell Halat (Crossbred)
*3rd and Land of Lincoln Champion: Ella Bobell, Logan County (Duroc)
4th: Bryce Bedecker (Chester)
5th: Lane Mollett (York)

Overall Market Wether
*Champion: Carter Hoge, McDonough County (Natural Color)
*Reserve and Land of Lincoln Champion: Macey DeBlock, Mercer County (Hampshire)
3rd Overall: Olivia Caldwell, Peoria County (Crossbred)
4th Overall: Ashtin Guyer, Crawford County (Hampshire)
5th Overall: Lillian Unger, (Natural Color)

Overall Market Meat Goat
*Champion: Tara Hummel, Kankakee County
*Reserve and Land of Lincoln Champion: Chase Tomhave, Morgan County

Other champions that will sell in the Sale of Champions include the grand champion Poultry Meat Pen exhibited by Faith Foster from Ford County.

About the Author(s)

Holly Spangler

Prairie Farmer Senior Editor, Farm Progress

Holly Spangler has covered Illinois agriculture for more than two decades, bringing meaningful production agriculture experience to the magazine’s coverage. She currently serves as editor of Prairie Farmer magazine and Executive Editor for Farm Progress, managing editorial staff at six magazines throughout the eastern Corn Belt. She began her career with Prairie Farmer just before graduating from the University of Illinois in agricultural communications.

An award-winning writer and photographer, Holly is past president of the American Agricultural Editors Association. In 2015, she became only the 10th U.S. agricultural journalist to earn the Writer of Merit designation and is a five-time winner of the top writing award for editorial opinion in U.S. agriculture. She was named an AAEA Master Writer in 2005. In 2011, Holly was one of 10 recipients worldwide to receive the IFAJ-Alltech Young Leaders in Ag Journalism award. She currently serves on the Illinois Fairgrounds Foundation, the U of I Agricultural Communications Advisory committee, and is an advisory board member for the U of I College of ACES Research Station at Monmouth. Her work in agricultural media has been recognized by the Illinois Soybean Association, Illinois Corn, Illinois Council on Agricultural Education and MidAmerica Croplife Association.

Holly and her husband, John, farm in western Illinois where they raise corn, soybeans and beef cattle on 2,500 acres. Their operation includes 125 head of commercial cows in a cow/calf operation. The family farm includes John’s parents and their three children.

Holly frequently speaks to a variety of groups and organizations, sharing the heart, soul and science of agriculture. She and her husband are active in state and local farm organizations. They serve with their local 4-H and FFA programs, their school district, and are active in their church's youth and music ministries.

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