Concluding a week of 4-H/FFA competition, the last evening of the Madison County Fair ended on a premium note with the livestock auction. Buyers, bidders, and exhibitors entered the north show ring for a light dinner with the auction following. 

Offering a different look this year, no animals would enter the arena during the auction, and exhibitors would be presenting their livestock via a slide presentation or bio.

After dinner which was provided by Knead Pi & Q, a local restaurant, auctioneers took their positions and the event got underway.

Bidders bought premiums on the livestock the 4-H/FFA member showed at the Madison County Fair. Receiving a good premium helps members to pay for additional costs associated with a livestock project for an upcoming year, or invest in a savings plan for college.

Buyers were offered three ways to participate: attend and bid at the live auction, contribute an “add-on” donation (which could be added to any specific youth’s premium), or participate in a pool where monies from different donors or businesses were pooled together to bid on a premium.

Jared McDonald, Director of the Madison County Historical Museum, served as Master of Ceremonies, calling exhibitors to the stage to promote their animals via a slide presentation.

The community of bidders came together when it was time for the sixth sale order of the auction. That sale order contained the name of Kolton Eivins. Eivins lost his life in an automobile accident in late February, so his sister Kayle approached the stage to present his entry. Eivins’ entries at the fair had received Grand Champion Pen of Three Market Beef, Grand Champion Home Raised Steer, Champion Heavyweight Steer, and Reserve Champion Heavyweight Steer.

When it came time for bidding on Eivins’ premium, auctioneers traveled the arena calling out the dollar values of participants. As the last dollar amount was voiced and the bidding had ceased, $10,000 had been raised.  

The Eivins family shared that the money would be invested back into the community with projects or scholarships in honor of the Winterset FFA member.

As the bidding on other exhibitors’ livestock continued well into the evening, it is hoped that this premium auction will further entice the youth of Madison County to participate in livestock. These projects are an immense learning experience for kids and give them lifelong skills.

Managing editor at the Madisonian.