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Huffmaster to compete in Denver

Saturday, January 7, 2012

Casey Huffmaster, a senior at Highland High School, poses with many of her trophies for showing cattle. She will be competing at the Western National Stock Show, Jan. 13-16 in Denver. Huffmaster has accumulated numerous awards at the state and national level, owns her own cattle operation and serves as the Highland FFA president. Photo/submitted
Very few schools have a student who repeatedly achieves both state and national level recognition. Casey Huffmaster, a senior at Highland, is making a whirlwind of her senior year on the cattle show circuit, earning more prestigious awards than some of the best athletes in the state can claim in their entire careers.

Serving as the 2011-2012 American National Saler's Queen, Huffmaster's life revolves around her close knit family, friends and, her show cattle. The awards are something she is humbled by, yet, as each new one is earned, she remains very proud to display them. On Jan. 13, Huffmaster will once again represent Sharp County in Denver, Colorado at the world renowned Western National Stock Show.

While in Denver, Huffmaster will serve as National Saler's Queen, and show her heifer, Sissy, and Rebel, a Saler's calf born at the Highland High School Show barn earlier in 2010. Rebel, named after the school's mascot, has already won many awards over older calves, including a Reserve National Champion title this year.

Huffmaster, her parents and FFA advisors Randy Nicholson and Jared Johnson will make the three day trip where she will compete in the show. Both are very proud of Huffmaster's achievements while in FFA at Highland.

Huffmaster, who is counting down the days left in her senior year at Highland High School, has had a lifelong love of animals, and began participating in 4-H in 2005.

"It has made me think of what I would want to do after high school and with my future career in animal science," Huffmaster said. "My parents have been so supportive of me than anyone else and they are the best."

She has won awards in both district and state 4-H O'Ramas. She participated in the poultry chain, and has served as vice president and currently serves as the president of the Sharp County 4-H.

Huffmaster is also very active in her school where she patriciates in FFA, and shows her cattle locally and at the state and national level. In 2009, she earned an FFA Green Hand award, and a Chapter Farmer degree in 2010.

She is also the current FFA president, and has served as both secretary and reporter with the club.

While continuing to maintain a high grade point average and serve her community through activities in both 4-H and FFA, Huffmaster is also a full time farmer who owns her own cattle operation, overseeing the day to day needs of her registered Angus and Salers show cattle.

Huffmaster has also been a member of the Arkansas Junior Cattleman Association since 2008. She has won numerous awards including Reserve High Point winner in 2009 for her Salers, high point winner in Salers and Salers Optimizer in 2010, and many grand champion, reserve grand champion and Top 5 placements with her show cattle.

Huffmaster competed at the Arkansas State Fair Spring Show, and won Reserve Champion Angus heifer and Grand Champion ribbons for all other breeds (AOB) Composite heifer classifications.

She also brought home some prestigious awards from the Missouri State fair in 2010, including Open Show Grand Champion for Salers Optimizer Heifer and in 2011.

Most recently, she earned the Arkansas State Fair Grand Champion award for AOB exotic full, and then found time to travel to South Dakota to show her cattle in the Salers Junior National Show.

Once again, Huffmaster's love and skill for showing her cattle came through as she finished 5th place in the no fit Senior Showmanship and Reserve Champion Showmanship Showdown.

She also won the Grand Champion Optimizer award for her cow calf pair and Reserve junior salers bull calf.

While in North Dakota, she also was crowned American National Salers Queen for 2011-2012.

Later in her whirlwind senior year, Huffmaster was awarded the Purple Circle Award at Little Rock.

The club is an awards program recognizing junior livestock exhibitors who earned championship honors at the Arkansas State Fair. It is sponsored by Arkansas Farm Bureau.

To round out the year, Huffmaster traveled to Louisville, Kentucky in November, where she showed her beloved cattle at the North American International Livestock Expo. She won her Salers Optimizer heifer class, and placed third with her Salers bull calf.

While in Kentucky, Huffmaster served as Queen, participating in photo sessions and presiding over several shows.

She is anxiously awaiting her next big adventure, Jan 13-18, when she will be showing in Denver at National Livestock Show, and also serve as Saler's Queen.

After graduation, Huffmaster plans to attend Arkansas State University in Beebe to major in animal science.

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