WESTERN wanderings

Jul 10, 2009


WESTERN wanderings


I have been a little tardy in writing this column. You may have heard that when you are busy, that’s when you get the most done. Well, summer is not very busy, so I guess that’s my excuse.

There are some events that happen and are covered by the press and yet those stories don’t always tell the whole story. Back in late April and early May, the Beef Improvement Federation (BIF) held their annual meeting and symposium in Sacramento, CA, and the California Beef Improvement Federation meeting was held in conjunction with it. Pete Crow covered it for WLJ and said he enjoyed the chance to see many friends and WLJ readers. One old friend of Western Livestock Journal,  Bruce Orvis, Orvis Cattle Co., Farmington, CA, received athe BIF Pioneer Award for his contributions to the genetic improvement of the beef industry. It is a coveted award and one that was richly deserved by Bruce and his family. I have known Bruce for quite a few years and have had the opportunity to visit his ranch and see his cattle. One visit with Bruce to drive through the cattle and you can easily see why he won this award.

His dedication and passion for the cattle business—and the Hereford business in particular—is strongly evident. WLJ doesn’t have an award for Bruce, but we should, as Bruce Orvis would, without question, be the longest running continual advertiser that we have. I can’t tell you what year Orvis Cattle Co. ran its first ad, but it would be some time back. We at WLJ are proud of Bruce Orvis and his family for his accomplishments and we are deeply grateful for his many years of support and confidence in WLJ. Congratulations Bruce! Another good WLJ customer for many years was also honored at this meeting. Harrell Hereford Ranch, Baker City, OR, was named Seedstock Producer of the Year by BIF and, again, this award was well deserved.

The Harrell Hereford Ranch was established in 1970 and today is owned and operated by the Harrell family, including Edna Harrell, Bob and Becky Harrell and daughter, Lexie, along with his sister and brother-inlaw, Beth and Wannie Mackenzie.

In addition to breeding some truly exceptional Hereford cattle and running some commercial cattle, they also raise and sell some very good Quarter Horses.

It has always been said that any breeding program is only as good as the people that run it and this is a prime example of good people and good cattle. When they find time for a little relaxation, they are pretty handy with a rope and you can find them at team ropings with the same intensity that is evident in their breeding program. Congratulations to all of the Harrell family.

Wander, wander … The middle of summer means video sales, horse sales, and selling the Commercial Cattle Issue. So far, the horse sales that I have worked have been very good. The Fort Ranch sale in Utah, the FAB Ranch sale in Washington, and the Hearst sale in California have all been strong with good buyer participation.

This week, the big Western Video Market (WVM) sale in Reno, NV, will be held. With the large number of cattle consigned, it was expanded to a four-day event and I know all of the WVM crew will be working hard. Later in July, I’ll be in Winnemucca, NV, for the big Superior Video Bellringer Sale, which is always well attended. If you can find the time to get out of the hay field for a day or two, a trip to these sales will be well worth your time, and you might even have some fun. Have a great summer and keep looking forward; the good times are coming! — JERRY YORK