MARTINSBURG - The Hershberger family has been coming to the weeklong Morrisons Cove Dairy Show for the past nine years, since their oldest son, Ross Heath, was 8 years old.
This year, parents Ross and Yvonne Hershberger, who own a number of dairy farms in the Hickory Bottom area named Elda-Chross Farms, saw all five of their children, even 3-year-old Savanna, compete in numerous competitions during the 60th annual show. The competitions ranged from different divisions of dairy show judging to ice cream eating and milk chugging.
"This is our nice little getaway for the summer," Yvonne Hershberger said. "The older ones enjoy competing, and Savanna and [8-year-old] Denae just love being here."
View some of the action from the Morrisons Cove Dairy Show
The three oldest Hershberger children competed in numerous cattle showing contests, and placed highly in their age classes. Ross Heath took first place in contests on Tuesday and Friday, Leah took two seconds on Tuesday and Ridge placed first on Tuesday.
Denae, who missed the cutoff age to compete in cattle competition by five months, participated in a peddle tractor pull, and Savanna got first in the kiddie showing competition with a little Jersey calf born in March named Maddie.
"I got a chocolate bar," Savanna said, as her reward from the judges for placing first.
Mirror photo by J.D. Cavrich
Brock Frederick, 8, of Rich-Lou Farms of Martinsburg tries to settle down Sparkle, a spring Holstein calf, before loading her into a trailer at the Morrisons Cove Memorial Park during the Cove Dairy Show.
"Well, they all place first [in the kiddie showing]," Yvonne Hershberger said with a smile.
The Hershbergers were especially proud of placing second in a competition for the best area where cattle is kept. Cleanliness and decoration were the criteria for judges, and Yvonne Hershberger said the kids did a good job keeping the cows clean and making sure the walkways were swept.
"It gets easier and easier every year that they get older, because they take more responsibility for the cattle, and do most of the training themselves," Yvonne Hershberger said. "I'm just here now to support them and keep the cows fed."
Even Savanna helps out with the cattle, and told a story about Maddie getting a little restless earlier in the week.
"I calmed Maddie down," she said.
Mirror Staff Writer Scott Muska is at 946-7435.