By Esther M. Silvius
SUGARCREEK, Ohio-Abby Myers, a 16-year old Strasburg High School sophomore, was crowned 2014 beef queen at the 24th annual Tuscarawas County Cattle Association (TCCA) banquet and meeting.The event was held at Dutch Valley Restaurant on Old State Route 39, east of Sugarcreek. The entertainment was provided by Mike Hemmelgarn, a well known ventriloquist and juggler. Abby is a daughter of Butch and Cindy Myers of Strasburg. She has been involved in 4-H club work for nine years and has shown market steers for six years. She is a member of Buckhorn Buckeyes 4-H Club, and serves as its president. The new queen enjoys raising and showing cattle, pigs and chickens. She is also a member of the Tuscarawas County 4-H Livestock Judging Team. Abby is an honor roll student at Strasburg High School, and is on both the basketball team and the track team. She said "I am very excited about serving my reign as the 2014 Tuscarawas County Beef Queen. The beef industry is a huge part of my life and it is my passion. After I graduate from high school, I plan to attend college to pursue a career in agriculture." "I wanted to be beef queen because it is such an honor and blessing to able to represent Tuscarawas County and promote the beef industry." Abby said " I plan to attend the Ohio Beef Expo and the Buckeye Classic in March. Also, I will be attending the Ohio State Fair and take part in many parades this spring and summer. I am very excited to attend other beef cattle events, meet new people and create new opportunities." Micah Busby, the 13-year old daughter of Bart and Mandi Busby of 601 Busby Drive, Bowerston, is the 2014 Tuscarawas County Beef Princess. She has taken market steer and market goat projects as a five year member of Boots and Chutes 4-H Club. The new princess is an 8th grader at Conotton Valley High School. At the school, her favorite activities are volleyball, basketball and softball. "We raise Angus, Simmental and Crossbred beef cattle on our family farm and I love working with the cattle, especially my steer projects," she said. "I am honored to represent the beef industry as the 2014 Tuscarawas County Beef Princess. I look forward to attending various beef cattle events during the year." Queen attendants were the following: Mackenzie Peffer, daughter of Ben and Lisa Peffer, a freshman at Tuscarawas Valley High School, who has taken steer, market hog, poultry, Living History and miscellaneous projects in her six years with 4-H. Hannha Peeper, daughter of Brent and Donna Peeper, a junior at Indian Valley High School who is active in FFA and has shown market steers, market hogs and horses as a 13-year 4-H member; Lauren Sproul, daughter of Troy Sproul, a sophomore at Claymont High School where she is involved in sports and other school activities. She has taken market steer and market hog projects for her seven years as a 4-H member. Barbi Boyd, daughter of Danny and Juli Boyd of Mineral City, a freshman at Quaker Digital Academy, has taken market steers, market hogs, broilers, fancy poultry, market rabbits, and pygmy goats during her seven years in 4-H; Micayla Lautzenheiser, daughter of Eric and Cheryl Lautzenheiser, a freshman at New Philadelphia High School, is active in her church and community and has taken market hogs, heifers and miscellaneous projects during her six years with 4-H. Michelle Evans was in charge of the queen and princess contest/ Jerry Prysi, Fred Tuerler, Guy Zeigler, Kevin Hinds, and Mark Lewis were elected to the board of directors for a two-year term. They will join five other directors-Donnie Himes, Kriss Raber, Dean Prysi, Doyle Shoup and Justin Specht whose terms expire in 2015. Jerry Prysi is president of the board, Fred Tuerler, vice president, Kriss Raber, secretary, and Donnie Himes treasurer. Treasurer, Donnie Himes, reported total sales from the beef trailer in 2013 included 11,898 sandwiches,7,804 beverages, and 8,543 slices of cheese. During the 2013 Tuscarawas County Fair, a total of 8,150 sandwiches, 5,015 beverages and 5,762 slices of cheese were sold. The treasurer also noted that the cattle association is proud to be able to provide a total of $ 7,000 in scholarships for the Tuscarawas County youth who are studying in the field of agriculture. In addition, the association donated $ 705.21 to the Forest Heritage Festival, which supports Akron Children's Hospital. Chris Zoller, Tuscarawas County Extension Educator, agriculture and natural resources, gave information on several up-coming agriculural meetings, including a "Workshop on Family Farming" March 1 where he is one of the speakers. He also announced an Agronomy School/Risk Management Workshop March 5 at Union Hill Methodist Church in Sugarcreek. Zoller and Sally Puzacke of Saltwell Stables discussed the Ohio Beef Check-off program and its benefits. It was noted that by increasing the check-off, secure reliable funds will stay in Ohio and Ohio's beef farmers will remain profitable. President, Jerry Ptysi, welcomed guests and Robert Machan, area beef farmer, asked the invocation for the family style dinner. Machan said he is amazed by the many changes he has observed in agriculture and farming methods during his lifetime on the farm.