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Chambersburg Jersey wins Supreme Champ

August 22, 2004|by BONNIE H. BRECHBILL

bonnieb@herald-mail.com

CHAMBERSBURG, PA.- A husband-and-wife team led their well-groomed Holstein cows around the show ring Saturday at the Franklin County Fair. Their efforts paid off when one of the cows, Savage-Leigh Excite Suzane, was named Grand Champion.

Jamie and Jami Hartman milk 105 cows on their farm in St. Thomas, Pa. Jami Hartman said the Grand Champion, a 4-year-old cow, gives about 140 pounds of milk per day, which is about 16 gallons. They plan to show Suzane later this year in Harrisburg, Pa., and at the Maryland State Fair.

The Hartmans' son, 22-month-old Colton, accompanied them to the show. In the area of the fairgrounds dairy barn allotted to their herd, the Hartmans set up a display area with photos of their farm and herd, painted milk cans and potted flowers.

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Their farm, PA Lyn-Leigh, also received the Paul Eckstine Memorial Good Housekeeping Award, given yearly in memory of fair President Robert Eckstine's father, a well-known local dairy farmer.

After Savage-Leigh Excite Suzane received the Grand Champion rosette, the Grand Champions of three other dairy breeds - Jersey, Guernsey and Brown Swiss - were brought into the ring. Judge Creedin Cornman of Boiling Springs, Pa., judged those breeds Friday, and now had to choose one of them as Supreme Champion.

"This is some chore, but it has to be done," Cornman said. "The Holstein is an excellent dairy cow, with good feet and legs, but I'm going to go with the Jersey for Supreme Champion. She will do well in future shows."

The Jersey, Reich-Dale GC Sequence-ET, a junior 3-year-old, was shown by Curtis Reichard of Reich-Dale Farm in Chambersburg. Reichard said he was surprised with his big win.

"Who wouldn't be?" he said. "There were a lot of good cows out there."

Reich-Dale Farm also received the Premier Exhibitor award, given to the dairyman who owns and shows the largest number of high-placing cows based on a point system.

Reichard farms with his parents, Ed and Frances Reichard, his wife, Autumn, and sons Skyler, 4, and Hayden, 2. They milk 70 Holsteins and Jerseys, and also showed the Junior Champion Holstein at the fair.

Cornman, a respected judge on the dairy show circuit, said he was impressed with the quality of cattle shown.

"There was tremendous quality all the way down the line in all the classes," he said. "These animals will do well in tougher competition."

According to Robert Eckstine, for the first time the agribusiness representatives at the fair donated $1,300 to be split among the Supreme Champion and the Grand Champions. The Supreme Champion will receive $650 and each of the other three will receive $215, Eckstine said.

On the last day of the fair, Eckstine said "things went real well 'til last night, when the tractor pulls were rained out. Some of the pullers drove in from Virginia, and had to turn around and go home."

While he did not yet have firm figures on attendance, Eckstine said that between Sunday and Thursday nights, food stand sales were up over last year.

"We determine if the fair is successful if people had a good time," he said. "Just go through the barns and you'll see how happy the kids are. This is their break before going back to school."

While acknowledging that putting on a fair is a great deal of work, Eckstine said that "we do this to expose agriculture to the public and for the youth. A large amount of premium money goes to the youth."

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