Steamboat Springs High School sophomore sells steer for $8k at livestock sale
STEAMBOAT SPRINGS — Emmitt Meyring circled the ring with his 1,370-pound reserve steer, Duke, at the Junior Livestock Sale at the Routt County Fair in Hayden on Saturday.
Duke had an American flag bandana wrapped around his neck, and the bids seemed to keep coming as he stood, poised in the ring.
“Do I hear $7,800 … $7,800 … $8,000 … $8,000. Sold!” the auctioneer announced.
Just before Duke, a grand champion steer sold for $7,600. But Duke would sell for $8,000 to Master Petroleum.
Meyring, an incoming sophomore and cross country athlete at Steamboat Springs High School, wears a grin as wide as his brimmed hat in the ring with his two friends. They’re trying to wrangle him to pose with his head facing forward for a picture after the auction. Duke, no longer on the stage, lets out a large groan.
The Junior Livestock Sale is an auction where bidders compete to purchase the animals 4-H members have raised. The 4-H members can use the money to reimburse, reinvest and save.
What’s Meyring going to do with that $8,000? Save it for a new car or college tuition?
“Pay everything I owe,” Meyring said with a chuckle, a realistic answer for a young cowboy. “This is awesome for reserve, it’s really generous of them to spend that much money on a steer and it’s awesome.”
But this isn’t Meyring’s first fair. He grew up in the business of cattle ranching. In 2012, Meyring sold his steer for $10,000 at age 9.
Today’s 1 1/2-year-old Duke was raised on Meyring’s 1,500-acre family ranch in Clark, home to 400 cow-calf pairs and yearlings.
“I’ve been livestock judging, so I’m pretty good at selecting ones that will be quality, and we raise good ones at the ranch,” Meyring said. “So I can buy them from the ranch owner, then I work for them all year and put quite a bit into them with feed, hair products, electricity and all that.”
In the weeks leading up to the fair, Meyring gave Duke the top-of-the-line grooming treatment, complete with a wash, blow-dry and rest in an air-conditioned barn. But Duke also undergoes training to be halter-broke, or used to being handled so he behaves himself on the big stage at the livestock show.
“I’ve done it since I was 8, we’d always raise cattle and dad showed cattle as a kid, so it’s kind of in the family,” Meyring said. “I love the freedom and I like working with livestock a lot.”
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