Livestock Association awards scholarships, elects officers, talks fair
By Steve Herring
Published in News on March 3, 2013 1:50 AM
The Wayne County Livestock Development Association Monday night awarded $10,800 in scholarships to local high school seniors. On front row, left to right, are, Kelly Grace Keen, Reagan Scout Andrson and Cameron Lee Smith, all of Rosewood High School. On back row, left to right, are, Morgan Leigh Powell of Southern Wayne High School, and Tara Simmons of Charles B. Aycock High School.
Nearly $11,000 in scholarships were presented Monday night by the Wayne County Livestock Development Association, which also elected officers and highlighted its main fundraiser -- the Wayne Regional Agricultural Fair.
The fair allows the association to meet its goals and objectives, association President Curtis Shivar said during the organization's 65th annual meeting at the Wayne Center. It also helps to educate non-farm youths and adults about the importance of agriculture and livestock in the county, he said.
In his final report as fair manager, Milton Ingram said that the 2012 edition of the fair had been hurt early on by rain, but had rebounded with "excellent" attendance during the second half.
Still, paid attendance was down by 10,000 compared to 2011, said Ingram who retired in January after 28 years as fair manager.
Eddie Pitzer, the new manager, announced that once again this year Powers Great American Midway from Wilmington would provide the rides, food concessions, and games.
"Again this year we have plenty of free entertainment scheduled for all ages," he said. "We have several new acts that include a high wire show called the Pirates of the Caribbean, a comedy hypnosis and a new addition to bull riding called Dancing with the Bulls.
"As I think back to previous fairs, there are several things that make our fair one of the best agricultural fairs in the state. We have a variety of exhibits from best bundle of tobacco to best pie baking, contests and competitions for all ages from the spelling bee to the oldest grandparent. Or you can show off your best pig, goat, lamb or calf in the livestock show."
What makes the fair so successful are the people who visit it or who exhibit or volunteer, he said.
Also, improvements made each year make the fairgrounds and its facilities more functional for other uses, Shivar said. Some of the main improvements have been replacing lighting in the main parking lot, a new poultry and rabbit barn, and paving, Shivar said.
During 2012 the fairgrounds were used for the Relay for Life, a horse health clinic, employee appreciation days for local businesses, and as a staging ground for Habitat for Humanity workers, he said.
The Association also sponsors the Junior Livestock Show and Sale that is co-sponsored with Cooperative Extension, Shivar said. The show is held in April.
In 2012 the program attracted 67 youths, a 25 percent increase, he said.
Another major project is the awarding of scholarships, Shivar said.
"Since 1986 we have awarded scholarships to 107 Wayne County Schools graduates and transfer students totaling $144,500," Shivar said. "The success rate of the scholarship recipients has been amazingly high and many are employed in the livestock industry or agricultural careers or careers in which they can promote livestock and agriculture."
"This is probably one of the most important things that this association does outside the fair and livestock shows," said Milton Ingram.
The organization's Scholarship Committee received eight applications this year, Ingram said. Five were awarded totaling $10,800, he said.
Three types of scholarships are awarded: $2,400 for students attending a senior college or university; $1,200 for a student attending a community college or the N.C. State University Agricultural Institute; and $1,200 for students who transfer to a senior college or university.
To qualify, the student must be a resident of Wayne County; be a high school senior or graduate; provide a grade transcript; provide two letters of reference; complete a four-page application; and be active in the Association and/or the Wayne Regional Agricultural Fair.
Receiving $2,400 scholarship were: Reagan Scout Anderson, Rosewood High School, who will attend Mount Olive College to study biology; Kelly Grace Keen, Rosewood High School, who will attend N.C. State University to study poultry science; Morgan Leigh Powell, Southern Wayne High School, who will attend N.C. State University to study animal or poultry science; and Tara Simmons, Charles B. Aycock, who will attend Dartmouth to study environmental engineering.
Camron Lee Smith, Rosewood High School, received $1,200 and will study turf grass management at Wayne Community College.