Colby Sheppard, a member of Madisonville FFA, caught a calf during Fort Worth Stock Show & Rodeo’s Calf Scramble on Jan. 26, earning a $500 purchase certificate for a show heifer and the chance for up to $12,500 in scholarship awards. Sheppard’s parents are Troy and Shelli Sheppard. Sheppard’s award was sponsored by TLC Urban.
During each of 28 rodeo performances, the Calf Scramble gives 16 Texas 4-H and FFA members the opportunity to catch one of eight calves released during the show in one of the most thrilling and unpredictable events. Justin Boots and Texas Mutual Insurance Company are long-time supporters of the Calf Scramble. Participants who do not catch a calf receive a pair of Justin Boots, a practice that has seen more than 227 pairs of boots awarded annually.
The Stock Show’s Calf Scramble scholarship awards range from $500 to $12,500, to participants who demonstrate dedication and hard work through monthly reports, and a final essay submitted to their sponsors and the Calf Scramble Committee. Sheppard will use the purchase certificate to buy a registered beef or dairy heifer to raise and exhibit at next year’s Stock Show. This year, $292,000 in calf scramble scholarships will be awarded to 67 students.
Madisonville 4-H member James Cleere captured Reserve Champion Junior Heifer with CMF MC Advancer in the Junior Other Recorded Heifer Show at the 2019 Fort Worth Stock Show & Rodeo on January 28. The 2019 Show is hosting junior breeding beef exhibitors from across Texas competing for awards and $36,210 in premiums.
“The Stock Show serves as a nurturing point for these future business and civic leaders,” said Stock Show President and General Manager Brad Barnes. “This commitment is a founding principle of the Stock Show and we remain humbled with the number of Texas youth who choose to exhibit in the many events at the legendary Fort Worth Stock Show & Rodeo.”
Of the 33,000 entries at the nation’s longest-running livestock show, the livestock exhibited by the more than 11,500 junior exhibitors are among the best market animals in the country. While the livestock are impressive, one of the Show’s main objectives is to support the professional and leadership development efforts offered by the 4-H and FFA programs in Texas. Bonuses for the livestock show total $18,750 while the Agricultural Development Fund has committed more than $79,000 in additional premiums to the barrow, breeding sheep, dairy cattle, wether lambs, wether goats, youth rabbits, youth poultry and youth dairy goats since 2015. An additional $8,000 in premiums has been added in 2019 for barrows, breeding sheep, dairy cattle, wether lambs and wether goats, for a total of $106,150 in support.