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Thriving community gathers at Bonnyville district 4-H show and sale

The communities of Bonnyville, Ardmore, and Beaver River congregated at the Bonnyville Agricultural Society ground for their annual 4-H District Beef Show and Sale on May 31.

BONNYVILLE – The communities of Bonnyville, Ardmore, and Beaver River congregated at the Bonnyville Agricultural Society ground for their annual 4-H District Beef Show and Sale on May 31. 

Shelbea Gamache, senior member of the Bonnyville Beef 4-H club, describes the experience as irreplaceable for someone who wants to grow up and enter the agricultural industry. 

“It’s a testament to the power of community and collaboration,” says Gamache, referring to the immense volunteer and parent efforts paired with generous sponsorship and community investment.  

The kids showed up with their groomed and coiffed cattle, ready for the show ring. The day started with an opening ceremony. The kids stood in their respective clubs behind their banners for a land acknowledgement, the national anthem, and the 4-H pledge.  

Hailey Lobe, President of the Bonnyville 4-H club and emcee for the event, says, “This year we had an interesting twist, and welcomed two horse clubs, Lakeland Long Riders and Iron River Wranglers, to join us on this special day.” 

Lobe reports that the riders bared flags representing the 4-H symbol and the sponsors of each category.  

Some wild Lakeland winds also joined in on the event, highlighting the determination and resourcefulness of the agricultural community – despite the weather.  

“The [riders] had a bit of adversity at first with the wind and the horses being wiggly, but they did amazing by the end of it. That’s what these days are all about - growth,” says Lobe. 

MD of Bonnyville Reeve Barry Kalinski and Town of Bonnyville Coun. Brian McEvoy participated in the opening ceremony, showing the municipalities’ support for the kids, and the future of agriculture in the region. 

Kalinski also got to enjoy the benefits of the tent the MD of Bonnyville helped fund for the sale, when a downpour hit before the auction. 

Heather Brundige, general leader of the Beaver River beef 4-H club, said “It was our club’s turn to put it on, so we did most of the leg work...I think the day went really well. Other than the weather, the calves co-operated, the kids did well...It was very windy – so it was good to have [the tent] for the sale, it made for a nice atmosphere.”  

Gamache spoke to the most valuable skills learned in 4-H. “Taking care of animals requires daily commitment and teaches discipline. Patience is necessary when training and working with cattle, as they can be unpredictable. Teamwork often comes into play when preparing for shows, whether it's working with family or fellow members... perseverance is essential... setbacks are common in agriculture, and learning to overcome them is a crucial skill.” 

Colton Mathes, 10, from the Bonnyville 4-H beef club shared similar sentiments.  

“I’ve learned that sometimes things don’t go as planned and you have to work harder to figure out how to fix them... I gained better work ethic that I hope can help me in my future careers.” 

Gamache spoke about how rewarding it is helping younger members at the show and witness their growth.  

The 4-H community showed up in large numbers for the event, and local bidders we’re very generous during the sale, highlighting the broader community’s support for 4-H.  

Both Reeve Kalinski and Town of Bonnyville Mayor Elisa Brosseau purchased cattle at the auction as well as local businesses and individuals.

The Town of Bonnyville will donate the meat to local non-profits, as discussed as a recent Town of Bonnyville council meeting. Organizations such as The Hive and the Bonnyville food bank were put forward as possible groups that may benefit from the purchase of the steer.

“It’s truly gratifying to see the support of the community. Knowing that so many local people and businesses are invested in the event makes me feel honoured and appreciated,” says Gamache. 

Mathes expressed how grateful he is for the community support. “It felt amazing. I’m very grateful and proud to have all those wonderful people there supporting all of us 4-Hers.” 

Mathes continued, “It’s nice to watch all the support. Just makes you feel like all your hard work has paid off. But it’s very sad to say goodbye to your steer. It’s the hardest part for me.” 


Pen of Five

1st - Beaver River Beef Club - Melody Brundige, Ava Campbell, Lily Brundige 

2nd - Bonnyville 4-H Beef Club - Zaidee Heraid, Jessica Tetreau, Gavin Gamache  

3rd - Ardmore 4-H Beef Club - Kody Plouffe, Cora Lee, Isabella Cory 

Junior Judging

1st - Melody Brundige  

2nd - Vanessa Vasseur 

Intermediate Judging

1st - Autumn Cory 

2nd - Ava Campbell  

Senior Judging

1st - Shelbea Gamache 

2nd - Lily Brundige  


1st - Luke Brundige 

2nd - Hudson Martindale 

2 Year Cow/Calf: 

1st - Lily Brundige  

2nd - Melody Brundige 

3 Year Cow/Calf: 

1st - Shelbea Gamache 

2nd - Gavin Gamache 

Supreme Female 

1st - Luke Brundige  

2nd - Hudson Martindale 

Rate of Gain

1st- Anika Schoch (3.51) 

Cleaver Kids

Wyatt Adrian, Tessa Lee, Olli Schoch, Ryleigh Cooper, Ryley Kardash, Tayah Williams, William Thiessen. 

Senior Grooming

1st - Lily Brundige 

2nd - Shelby Campbell 

Senior Showmanship

1st - Lily Brundige  

2nd - Shelbea Gamache 

Intermediate Grooming

1st - Luke Brundige  

2nd - Ava Campbell  

Intermediate Showmanship 

1st - Luke Brundige  

2nd - Arielle Thiessen  

Junior Grooming  

1st - Melody Brundige  

2nd - Anika Schoch 

Junior Showmanship

1st - Melody Brundige  

2nd - Adley McMann  

Market Steer

Grand Champion Market Steer - Hudson Martindale 

Reserve Champion Market Steer – Luke Brundige  

Club Display 

1st - Ardmore 4-H Beef Club 


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