Dakota Farmer

Little International celebrates 100 years

South Dakota State University students compete and celebrate this flagship year on campus.

Sarah McNaughton, Editor, Dakota Farmer

April 10, 2023

2 Min Read
CENTENNIAL CELEBRATIONS: SDSU students put on the Little “I” show each year. The 100th show made for special events for both alumni and students.SDSU Little International

The Little International at South Dakota State University marked its 100th year March 31 to April 1. This capstone event focused on the traditions of where Little “I” started and the vision of its future at SDSU.

Cody Gifford, a senior studying agriculture science from Arco, Minn., served as the event’s manager, with Isaac Berg, a junior studying animal science from Pipestone, Minn., as assistant manager. While these two were the main leaders of the event, more than 150 other students worked as event staff.

Each year, Little I selects an Honored Agriculturalist based on his or her dedication, passion and impact for the agriculture industry. The 2023 recipient was Rod Geppert, of Fort Pierre, S.D. An alumnus of SDSU, he is a regional manager with the American Angus Association.

Current students competed in showmanship and fitting contests during the main show, including sheep, beef, goat, swine, horse and dairy. Students can compete in either novice or experienced categories. Honors were also given for hardest-working competitors. Results of the contests are below:

Showmanship. The winners in the experienced category are:

  • Sheep — Emily Nold (Round Robin Reserve champion)

  • Beef — Lucas Bjorklund

  • Goat — Bradyn Lachenmeier

  • Dairy — Kelsey Erf

  • Horse — Rachel Coudron

  • Swine — Makayla Nelson (Round Robin champion)

The winners in the novice category are:

  • Sheep — Cassidy Strommen

  • Beef — Jacob Chapman

  • Goat — Kelsey Swearinger

  • Dairy — Jenna Dougherty

  • Horse — Alexis Stolicker

  • Swine — Aubrey Van Briesen

Fitting. The winners in the experienced category are:

  • Sheep — Zachary Schoelerman

  • Beef — Lucas Bjorklund

  • Goat — Trevor Mente

  • Dairy — Taylor Festor

  • Horse — Jaylynn Frandrup

The winners in the novice category are:

  • Sheep — Sydney Sheffield

  • Beef — Bryn Anderson

  • Goat — Jerson Kopka

  • Dairy — Drew Stock

  • Horse — Alexis Stolicker

Hardest-working exhibitors. The winners include:

  • Sheep — Sydney Sheffield

  • Beef — Carter Sanny

  • Goat — Jerson Kopka

  • Dairy — Sophie Kyllonen

  • Horse — Shelby Holmes

  • Swine — Mackenzie Hanssen

To find out more information about the 100th Little International, visit sdsulittleinternational.com.

About the Author(s)

Sarah McNaughton

Editor, Dakota Farmer, Farm Progress

Sarah McNaughton of Bismarck, N.D., has been editor of Dakota Farmer since 2021. Before working at Farm Progress, she was an NDSU 4-H Extension agent in Cass County, N.D. Prior to that, she was a farm and ranch reporter at KFGO Radio in Fargo.

McNaughton is a graduate of North Dakota State University, with a bachelor’s degree in ag communications and a master’s in Extension education and youth development.

She is involved in agriculture in both her professional and personal life, as a member of North Dakota Agri-Women, Agriculture Communicators Network Sigma Alpha Professional Agriculture Sorority Alumni and Professional Women in Agri-business. As a life-long 4-H’er, she is a regular volunteer for North Dakota 4-H programs and events.

In her free time, she is an avid backpacker and hiker, and can be found most summer weekends at rodeos around the Midwest.

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