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Harlee Brauckmuller at Cass County Fair

Cass County resident Harlee Brauckmuller, shown here at the 2018 Cass County Fair, won the written test division of the 2018 Nebraska Elite Showman Competition at the Nebraska State Fair in early September. The Greenwood native defeated 40 other students in the contest. County officials could select only one student to represent them in the Nebraska Elite Showman Competition at the state fair.

GRAND ISLAND – Harlee Brauckmuller has collected many prizes for her knowledge of agricultural and livestock topics over the years.

She claimed one of the region’s top awards last week during the Nebraska State Fair.

Brauckmuller won the written test division of the 2018 Nebraska Elite Showman Competition in early September. The 13th annual Nebraska Elite Showman Competition featured many of the top 4-H and FFA students from across the state. Brauckmuller is from Greenwood and is a member of the Fairland Giants 4-H group.

Cass County Extension Office Manager Sondra Buell said area residents were thrilled to see Brauckmuller earn the prestigious award. Brauckmuller has won many ribbons at the Cass County Fair and has been involved in numerous 4-H clubs and organizations.

“We are proud of our Cass County 4-Her Harlee Brauckmuller,” Buell said.

Members of the Nebraska Department of Agriculture and Nebraska Rural Radio Association helped Nebraska State Fair officials with this year’s event. Competitors had to be between 14-18 years old and had to be enrolled in either 4-H or FFA. Counties are able to select only one student to represent them at the Nebraska State Fair. Many agricultural businesses and organizations donated money to allow winners to receive cash prizes for their work.

“I’m pleased that NDA and our partners are able to coordinate and sponsor events like these to recognize the hard work, dedication and passion that young Nebraskans have for agriculture,” NDA Director of Agriculture Steve Wellman said. “Congratulations to the winners and to all of the participants for making this year’s Elite Showman Competition so exceptional.”

Brauckmuller squared off with students from 40 other Nebraska counties at the state fair. Competitors received scores for their knowledge of beef, swine, sheep and goat showmanship. Judges also evaluated them on their interview skills and work on a written test. Brauckmuller secured the top written test score of 35. She edged Rachel Kort of Adams County and Kelsey Loseke of Washington County by one point for the championship.

Other division winners included Creighton Hirschfeld of York County (swine showmanship), Ralston Ripp of Buffalo County (sheep showmanship), Liz Marker of Morrill County (beef showmanship), Taylor Lautenschlager of Hall County (goat showmanship) and Blake Bruns of Lincoln County (interview).

Bruns compiled a total score of 393 for all six divisions and earned first place in the overall competition. Savannah Peterson of Dawson County captured second place and Ripp finished in third place.

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