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Finishing in the top three of each category at the Cross Border Classic Horse and Livestock Judging Contest were, from left, Alyson Leach, Dylan Clark, Delaney Clark, Landon Omdahl, Lydia Vermulm and Emma Clark.

The Cross Border Classic, a horse and livestock judging competition open to youth in Montana and Canada, took place on Sunday, May 12. A total of 22 kids aged seven – 17 traveled from four counties to compete at the inaugural event. 

The day started with a brief judging tutorial for the beginner youth or anyone who wanted a refresher. A ‘walking taco’ lunch was available, provided by Kim Woodring, Toole County Extension Agent and Adriane Good, Pondera County Extension Agent, who also planned the event. 

Judging commenced shortly after lunch, with participants split into groups led by Pondera County 4-H Ambassadors, Brae Eneboe, Lydia Vermulm, Emma Clark and Payton Vermulm. Grace Rooney of Cut Bank also stepped up into a leadership role and led a group.

Junior and senior age divisions were asked to judge six classes: prospect heifers, ranch horses, market hogs, feeder lambs, bred does and a mystery class! Reasons were given on all but the does and mystery class. Participants only knew the mystery class would be something not typically judged at most shows. What a surprise to find out they were judging laying hens with eggs at side. 

In the Senior class (14 years old and up) Emma Clark, of Conrad, took top honors, winning a $50 cash prize. Lydia Vermulm, of Conrad, took second and $25. The $10 prize and third place went to Landon Omdahl of Shelby.

The Junior class (13 years old and under) had the same prizes given with first place going to Alyson Leach, of Ledger. Dylan Clark took second place out of the hands of his sister, Delaney Clark, who came in third. 

With the contest falling on Mother’s Day, all moms in attendance were invited to judge as well. Moms did placings only for all six classes, with the top scoring mom receiving a Windrift Hill goody bag. Stefanie Leach was the top mom with an impressive score of 287 out of 300!

A big thank you to our official judges and reasons takers: Cole Ratzburg, Margie Boumans, Jay Good, Arlene Good and Jim Woodring! Without help from people like you, as well as our sponsors for the event, Trader’s Dispatch, Cargill, Marias Fair Horse Committee, Marias Fair Livestock Committee and Suta Farms, this would not have been possible.

Keep your eyes open for the second annual Cross Border Classic next April!

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