Results of the 2008 Hokie Harvest Sale
Livestock Update, December 2008
Dr. Dan Eversole, Animal & Poultry Sciences, VA Tech
The 2008 Livestock Merchandising Class entertained a spectacular crowd of over 900 friends and supporters on a beautiful, autumn evening at the 14th Annual Hokie Harvest Sale on Friday, October 31st. There were 9 breeding swine sold via silent auction prior to the 20 university horses and 37 head (26 lots) of beef cattle that were sold concurrently at public auction in the Alphin-Stuart Livestock Arena (horses) and the Livestock Judging Pavilion (beef cattle) to 187 registered buyers from Kentucky, Ohio, Connecticut, South Carolina, Tennessee, West Virginia, North Carolina, Maryland, Pennsylvania, and Virginia. The beef cattle sale grossed $64,875 with a sale average of $2,495 with the following breed totals: Angus - $48,200; Hereford - $5,750; Simmental - $7,950; and Gelbvieh - $2,975. The horse sale grossed $52,500 with a sale average of $2,625 while the nine breeding swine averaged $384. This year’s sale gross totaled $120,845.
In the cattle sale of four different breeds, Lot 6 was the top selling lot at $5700. This Angus bred heifer is a daughter of the highly acclaimed sire, GAR New Design 5050, and ranked in the upper 3% on $B and $F. This highly valued brood cow prospect sold to Bud Phillips of Coeburn, VA.
In the cow/calf division, Lot 2 was the sale topper at $4,200. This Angus cow is sired by the $250,000 Pathfinder, BR Midland, and posts a progeny WWR of 2@104 and YWR 2@107. She sold to Bud Phillips of Coeburn, VA. Her phenomenal February bull calf by Lemmon Newsline C804 sold to Thomas Thompson of Natural Bridge Station, VA for $1,800.
VPI Professor T758 (Lot 26) topped the breeding-age bull division at $2,450. This Simmental yearling bull is a calving-ease son of Circlet Antoinettes Star and has tremendous curve-bending carcass genetics. He sold to Zelmer Younce, Jr. of Stambaugh, KY.
The high-selling horse was Lot 1, the 2008 colt Riley’s Reason, who sold for $7000. This special colt was donated to Virginia Tech by the Giunti family of Williamsburg VA. After the events of April 16th, 2007, Rich and Donna Giunti, and their daughter Cira, decided to breed their champion Oldenburg mare Bella Mia to Virginia Tech’s stallion Royal Appearance and donate the resulting foal, with the proceeds of its sale being split between the memorial funds established in the names of Nicole White and Emily Hilscher, two young equestrian students who were lost in the tragedy. Riley’s Reason is an exceptional colt and was sold to Debbie Bowman, a well-known Grand Prix dressage trainer in Virginia and former alternate for the 1984 Olympic Games. Debbie also took home the lovely yearling gelding Roswell VT, also sired by Royal Appearance.
Other high sellers included the two-year-old Oldenburgs Alfa Romeo VT (Lot 12) and Fantine VT (Lot 10), who sold for $6700 and $6500, respectively. The big bay gelding Alfa Romeo VT had been a Premium Foal and Champion Colt at his foal inspection, and was recently named Reserve Champion Colt at a Future Event Horse show in August 2008. He was purchased by Lizzie Wariner of Richmond. The beautiful Premium chestnut filly Fantine VT, sired by Fabriano, was purchased by Grand Prix dressage trainer Susan B. Cooper of Impulsion Unlimited, Inc., based in Huddleston Virginia.
The 93 students did a marvelous job of preparing for the sale. They gained ‘hands-on’ experience in sale management, budgeting, cataloging, advertising, livestock photography, clerking, and health requirements. Special thanks is extended to Col. Jeff Marsh of Eurosport Auctions, Ltd., Boston, VA and Col. Ken Brubaker of Brubaker Sales and Marketing, Harrisonburg, VA for serving as auctioneers for the horses and beef cattle, respectively. Students Kim Fisher, Milton, WV; Jacob Gilley, Madison, VA; Cory Spiker, Strasburg, VA; and Cathryn Whitt, Richmond, VA served as ring people for the beef cattle sale while Justin Brooks, Union Hall, VA worked the ring. Bid-takers for the horse sale were Rebecca Arnold, Martinsville, VA; Ashleigh Barron, Vinton, VA; Ben Craig, Raleigh, NC; and Cody Yeager, Christiansburg, VA. Students who were clerking ‘in the block’ were Katie Wall, Blacksburg, VA and Rachel Graham, Bernville, PA for the beef cattle and horses, respectively.
The Food and Beverage Committee, with assistance from the Block and Bridle Club in the Department of Animal and Poultry Sciences, served a complimentary BBQ dinner to over 750 guests. Their support and cooperation are greatly appreciated.
The response from the 187 registered horse, swine, and beef cattle buyers and feedback from the students in the class continue to be overwhelming in favor of hosting another student-run livestock sale. Plans are currently underway for the 15th Annual Hokie Harvest Sale on Friday, October 30, 2009. We hope to see you there!