By MARGIE TRAX PAGE
JEFFERSON - - Tuesday wasn't a good day for Tim Tuttle and his steer, Cricket.
The 11-year-old boy was no match for the big black steer in the Dairy Beef Eaters showmanship competition at the Ashtabula County Fair.
"He wouldn't walk straight and kept jumping around all the time. I guess you can say I am frustrated," Tim said.
Despite Cricket's wild ways, Tim walked away from the competition with a fifth place ribbon.
Tim's twin brother, Mitchell, was having his own issues with his steer, Bullet. Bullet would have won a better ribbon, but he was too busy being devious.
"All (Bullet) wanted to do was jump on other cows and be bad. He is like a grizzly bear that way," Mitchell said.
A full-size steer is a little too much work for Mitchell, who said he will try a different animal next year.
"I want to work with milking goats. That way, I get all the milk I want for free," he said.
The Tuttle brothers are members of the Milkshakes 4-H club.
The girls of the Cherry Lyme Tail Enders 4-H club had more luck than the Milkshakes boys. Jessica Woodin, 10, of Jefferson, and her steer, Bootsie, took first place in showmanship.
"I just held Bootsie's head up and had a lot of luck," Jessica said.
Kala Summers, 15, and her steer, White Whiskers, took the top prize in showmanship in Kala's age category. White Whiskers was one of the brightest, whitest bovines at the fair.
"He is a very white steer. I keep him and his bedding as clean as possible so he won't stain," Kala said.
Jessica said raising a steer is more work than most people realize.
"A lot of people think this is just easy as pie, but it is a lot of work. Some people start working with their animals two weeks before the fair and that is why they get run around by the animals. Bootsie is a big baby just because we work with him so much," she said.
Kala loves to raise steers, and will take on another bovine project next year. Jessica, on the other hand, has had enough of the cow-raising experience. Tears well up in her eyes very time she thinks of Bootsie's fate as a Beef Eater steer.
"It is just too sad to let them go. I am going to get into sewing next year. I just don't think I want to (show steer) again," she said.
More beef will be shown today with the Junior Fair all dairy judging by breed at 10 a.m.; the Junior Fair beef showmanship a 4 p.m.; and the Junior Fair breeding show at 7 p.m.
The open class beef show is Thursday at 11 a.m.; the Junior Fair beef feeder show is at 4 p.m.; and the Junior Fair steer show is at 6 p.m.
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