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Girl gets grand champion ribbon on her first try at the Calhoun Junior Livestock Show

By by Dianna Wray - DWRAY@VICAD.COM
Oct. 13, 2011 at 5:13 a.m.

Aubrey Housworth, 8, and her grand champion hog, Wilbur,   took the top prize her first time competing in the Calhoun County Junior Livestock Show.

Aubrey Housworth, 8, picked up a brush and ran it over Wilbur's backside one last time before the auction began.

In her first stock show, Aubrey's 266-pound hog was declared grand champion.

"I didn't expect to win," the blond-haired, blue-eyed girl with a pink bow in her ponytail said, smiling.

She was nervous when she walked into the exhibition ring with Wilbur on Thursday night.

On the sidelines, her parents, Kelli and Cory Housworth, were nervous, too.

"My legs felt like Jello. It was down to just three hogs in the arena, and two of them were mine," Kelly Housworth said.

Aubrey's big sister, Haley, 11, won third place with her hog. When the grand champion ribbon went to Aubrey, her eyes were wide with shock, Housworth said.

"We're still shocked. We didn't expect anything like this our first year," Housworth said.

Aubrey grabbed the ribbon and took it over to Wilbur's pen, climbing in to show him.

She had worked hard raising her hog for the show, but she never thought she'd take the top prize in hog raising.

"I walked him and worked with him and washed him and cleaned out his stall," Aubrey said, holding her head up proudly.

Wilbur acted more like a puppy than a pig, chewing on things and playing with a ball.

With his blue grand champion ribbon from the Calhoun County Fair Junior Livestock show, her hog was sure to fetch a high price, but it was the goodbye she would have to say that weighed on Aubrey's mind.

"I'm sad about that," she said, her smile fading. "He was like a puppy. He'd chew on your shoe and chew on your fingers and play with his ball."

Aubrey said she learned a lot from her first year of raising a hog. She knows a lot about hogs now.

"Pigs can be nice, but they can be rough sometimes," Aubrey said, rubbing her hog's head. "I'm going to raise another hog next year."



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