Welcome to Riley’s Bellaire Farm blog. Riley’s Bellaire Farm or RBF is a very small farm in Western Kentucky just outside the city of Hopkinsville. We have three family members, Toni, retired Christian County 4-H Agent, Elizabeth, a graduate student in animal science at Virginia Tech University – Go Hokies, and Catherine, a senior at the University of Kentucky majoring in Equine Business management and currently a student at Maynooth University in Ireland. Follow her blog at www.cmriley.blogspot.com. Elizabeth did the same thing in the spring of 2009 and went to Preston England and traveled all over England and many places on the continent. Her blog is still up at www.eariley.blogspot.com. Our husband and Dad, David died in 2005, when he lost his battle with Non-Hodgkins Lymphoma. We miss him very much.
This blog will offer the happenings on the farm, which may seem mundane to some, but is our way of life. Elizabeth and Catherine have been very active in raising and showing lambs and goats in first 4-H and then FFA, since they were four years old.
Both of the girls have aged out of junior shows. 2011 was the last for Catherine, but she went out with a bang. She showed the grand champion market goat at the Kentucky State Fair and it sold in the Sale of Champions for $20,000. We owe this record breaking amount, to the work of State Senator Joey Pendleton and the generosity of many local businesses and individuals. She received 60% of the sale price.
Catherine was also fortunate enough to have the 2011 Grand Champion Market Goat at the North American Livestock Exposition and the 2010 Kentucky State Fair, Reserve Champion Market Goat.
We are now concentrating on helping other 4-H and FFA members have success with their goat project. We have worked hard to develop a very good herd of wether does and have been fortunate to have the help of Alvin Tingle of Show Barn Genetics. His bucks have brought a tremendous genetic strength to our herd. We would never have had the level of success without his generosity, advice and counsel.
Right now, we are into kidding season and have some really nice early kids on the ground. So the next weeks will be devoted to the birth of new kids that hopefully will provide market does and wethers for youth organization members to have a great 2012 project year. We believe in a total program that the family is involved in and the kids do the work with adult guidance. Showmanship is as important as on foot placing and skillathon and judging only extend the opportunities for young people to learn about animal husbandry.