Last sale of the night worth the wait
Swine exhibitor Hunter Young found himself in an unenviable position Friday night.
Not only did cruel alphabetical order place him 119th among those selling hogs at the 4-H Livestock Auction, but swine also sold after all other livestock this year.
That meant the Poland teen was the 260th of 260 exhibitors to sell. After nearly six hours and more than $200,000 already spent, the young man could have been forgiven if he was less than enthused at the prospects of a high selling price.
However, before Young's name could be announced, Richard Neier of Neier Transportation, an active bidder much of the evening, sprung from his seat.
After a private conversation across the fence with the teenager, Neier made an announcement, saying he had asked Young what he thought a fair price for his animal would be. When Young said $600, Neier responded that he thought that could happen.
He then invited other bidders to join him in splitting the $600 asking price.
When about a half dozen partners were found, Neier upped the ante, asking his cohorts if each would be willing to contribute $100 and see what the total might be.
More joined the fold, and by a show of hands, the total had grown to $1,200.
John Kass of Buzzi Unicem said his company would throw in additional sum of $300. Our Community Bank also upped its contribution.
With several other additional contributions, Young's animal fetched a price of $2,425, compared to a market value of $218.96.
And all for being the final sale of the night.
Contributors to the winning bid included Neier Transportation, Buzzi Unicem, Our Community Bank, Brian and Lisa Berry, Keith Berry Farms, Heritage Environmental, Dr. Anthony and Karen Heavin, S&W Feed Center/Stine Seed, First National Bank, Eric and Shirley Hayman, Co-Alliance, Farm Credit Mid-America, Cedar View Farms, Ronnie Spencer, Red Barn Farms, Cloverdale Agri Center and Frank Bailey.
Smiling wide at the kindness of the community, Young figured it wasn't so bad having to wait until shortly before midnight to sell his hog.
"It was completely worth the wait," Young said. "I'm really grateful for what they did. I'm pretty much speechless."
After this display, the early spots in the auction may not be quite as coveted as they have been previously.
"Everybody's going to be begging to be last next year," auctioneer Jeff Rich said.
There will be no begging to it, though, as the established rotation will slot the goats in last in 2015.
So for any young goat ranchers out there named Zimmerman, 2015 may just be your year.