Auction commentator Bill Gay raises his hands while encouraging bids during last year’s North Western Colorado Bull Sale at the Routt County Fairgrounds. Also pictured is, from left, Marsha Daughenbaugh, executive director of the Community Agriculture Alliance, Brianna Wilhelm and auctioneer Troy Allen.
If you go
What: Eighth annual North Western Colorado Bull Sale
When: Sale starts at 1 p.m. Saturday; lunch is from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m.
Where: Routt County Fairgrounds in Hayden
Cost: Bull sale is free to watch; lunch is $5
What: Second annual Bunkhouse Bull Session
When: Doors open at 5 p.m. Friday, show starts at 6:30 p.m.
Where: Routt County Fairgrounds Exhibit Hall in Hayden
Cost: $30 for a single ticket, $25 each for multiple tickets
Call: Don Hayes at 846-9233
Steamboat Springs Cattle will be the focus at the Routt County Fairgrounds this weekend.
Doors open for the second annual Bunkhouse Bull Session, which includes a steak dinner and performances by cowboy poets, at 5 p.m. Friday. On Saturday, the eighth annual North Western Colorado Bull Sale starts at 1 p.m., with lunch served by the Routt County CattleWomen from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m.
Marsha Daughenbaugh, executive director of the Community Agriculture Alliance and sales clerk for the bull sale, said the event is targeted toward local producers. A notice goes out in January to people raising bulls and heifers, and those producers reply with the number of animals they plan to sell, she said.
Bulls will be sold by live auction, with commentator Bill Gay offering a description of each bull and an auctioneer handling the bidding, Daughenbaugh said. For the past three years, bull sales have averaged $1,800 to $1,850, she said. In 2006, the average sale was $2,242.
Fewer bulls will be up for auction at Saturday’s sale than in previous years, Daughenbaugh said. Compared with about 70 bulls offered in 2009 and about 60 bulls offered in 2008, the 31 bulls up for sale Saturday represent a noticeable decrease, she said. The 31 bulls and six heifers to be auctioned Saturday are from eight consignors; all but one of those sellers is a return consignor for the sale, Daughenbaugh said.
Daughenbaugh said some producers have left the bull business and some might feel they can’t make the sale this year. In addition to the $1,000 to $1,200 necessary to raise each animal, the sale requires a number of health tests to meet the event’s qualifications, Daughenbaugh said.
Each bull will be in the auction ring for a minute or so, with the event moving quickly from one animal to the next, Daughenbaugh said. For the first time this year, the heifers will be sold through silent auction, she said.
The Community Agriculture Alliance, Routt County Extension Office and Routt County CattleWomen present the annual bull sale.
On Friday, a fundraiser for Routt County 4-H features cowboy poets, comedians and musicians. Five professional performers will be on hand to share their art at the second annual Bunkhouse Bull Session. The event is not affiliated with the bull sale but is held on the same weekend to try to draw support for both events, Routt County 4-H Extension Agent Jay Whaley said.
Doors for the event open at 5 p.m. Tickets are $30 for a single ticket and $25 each for multiple tickets, Whaley said. The ticket price includes entertainment and a steak dinner. Five 4-H members will perform original poetry, music or prose, with two of them taking home $500 scholarships, Whaley said. A silent auction of local art and local services, along with ticket proceeds, will benefit Routt County 4-H.
— To reach Margaret Hair, call 871-4204 or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org