It's hard to think that a youth project with a $58,000 payoff is amateur. Fifty thousand is a professional level sum. Yet, 16-year-old Kellon Whitley Sturtevant, Wis., took home $58,000 from the Governor's Blue Ribbon Sale at the Wisconsin State Fair, Aug. 10.
The winning bid for Kellon's state champion steer came from Metcalf's Sentry, a grocery store with outlets in Madison and in the Milwaukee area. Kenosha Beef International and Smithfield Packerland were there to drive the bidding with Metcalf.
That kind of money can influence behavior. State fair auction scandals have hit several states. When the steaks get high, the steak often gets questionable. A $58,000 payoff at a livestock auction buys a kid a bachelors degree at a good university.
Sums like $58,000 cause people to try things perhaps they wouldn't. Sometimes these efforts get outside the boundaries of right and wrong, good and bad. Big money puts big temptations on the table.
As long as we're aware of the temptations, aware of what is right and wrong, know the difference between good and bad, these kinds of high profile youth livestock projects are great. Tending animals is demanding and risky.
Congratulations, Kellon. I wouldn't know you if I ran into you at a sale barn. I'm just hoping that if I do, that you're the kind of person I can look up to and trust doing business with.
Milwaukee Journal article