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Too soon gone: Family of Dylan Fulton reflects on rodeo memories, Cap’n Crunch, more

A South Dakota family said goodbye to their son over the weekend far sooner than they ever had planned. Dylan Fulton, 20, died Sept. 12 at his fraternity house at the University of Minnesota, St. Paul campus, where he had been working toward an animal science degree.

Dylan graduated high school in Miller, South Dakota, as co-valedictorian in 2017. He is survived by his parents, Paul and Kayleen, older brother Wyatt, and younger sisters Mackayln and Jenna.

"Three years ago, on the 23rd of this month, friends of ours lost their son to meningitis," Kayleen said. "We remember going up there and thinking, how could they ever go through it? You have to. We have three other very wonderful children. We can't not live for them, and not live life and love. They are just as wonderful as our Dylan."

Dylan grew up on his family's ranch south of St. Lawrence, South Dakota, where he worked with his dad, uncle, siblings, cousins, and grandparents and cared for numerous animals, including a flock of chickens.

"He had these chickens. He was funny about it; he didn't want to be broadcasting that he had these chickens. He didn't feel it was manly," Kayleen said of her son. "He gave me, his grandmas, and Aunt Susan eggs. He was a caretaker; he loved any kind of animal."

At college, he was vice noble ruler of scholarships at Alpha Gamma Rho (AGR), an agriculture fraternity, Sheep Barn co-manager and the Gopher Dairy Barn co-junior manager at the Minnesota State Fair. As in high school, he also maintained a 4.0 GPA landing him a spot on the Dean's List both semesters of college.

"He was in almost anything in school. We did not push him to be in them, he just did it," Dylan's mom said. "He was in the play, and he was so good. He was on the high school student council. Some things he just did, and we didn't know about."

Dylan was a boisterous character, sometimes seen in costume, but always ready to pump up the crowd at games and events. In high school, Dylan was an officer in FFA both locally and in the district. He won numerous local, district, and state FFA competitions and degrees throughout high school. He and his team qualified for nationals in Farm Business Management and placed second individually at the South Dakota Convention. He was also in cross country, track, basketball, FCCLA, honor roll, national honor society, served as a class officer, and competed in 4-H and high school rodeo competing in cutting, calf-roping, team roping, and bulldogging with his dad as his hazer.

At the regional rodeo at Fort Pierre Dylan's senior year, his family was pretty confident that Dylan had broken his nose while bulldogging, but they didn't take him to the hospital right away.

"We told him that his Uncle Brian [Fulton] had broken his nose, and it was crooked," Kayleen said. "Later I took him to the ER; they X-rayed it, it looked straight, so they taped it up, and we headed back to the rodeo so he could team rope."

The next day, Paul and Kayleen left the decision up to Dylan whether he wanted to bulldog.

"He said, 'Yeah, I'm going to bulldog!' and I think he won it that day," Kayleen said. "He toughed it out and competed at the state high school finals with a broken nose and black eyes."

Dylan was a notoriously picky eater, often reaching for the box of Captain Crunch he carefully stashed in the pantry or the homemade pudding, Grandma's recipe, that he would make and then promptly hide. At college, two neighboring sororities would often find Dylan to be a guest, depending on what they were eating that night.

"He would find out what they were having, and if it was better than they were having at AGR, he would go eat with the girls," his mom said, giggling.

Prior to the loss of their second child, the Fultons had been through their share of hardships, including the loss of Paul's brother Brian, cancer treatments for Kayleen last winter, and knee surgery for the youngest daughter, Jenna, but Kayleen would take any of that over the pain in her heart now.

"This is so much worse," she said. "We talked to our kids, they're all wonderful kids, and I don't want them to ever think they're any less than Dylan. You don't love one less at all. Yeah, we're sad, but we can't dwell on it because that's not how Dylan would want us to live."

This past spring, Dylan was considering traveling abroad in England in May, however, Kayleen reminded him his sister Mackayln was graduating from high school. Dylan consulted his Uncle Neil Fulton who also encouraged him to consider going another time.

"It was his choice to wait, and I'm glad he did," Kayleen said. "That would have been that many less weeks we would have had with him."

The Fultons' last photo as a complete family was taken at Mackayln's graduation.

While Paul and Kayleen had big dreams for their son, as they do all their children, their biggest hope is that he was happy.

"He was very talented. We told him, 'Dylan, you can do anything.' We always just wanted him to be happy with whatever he chose in life," Kayleen said. "I truly believe he was happy and enjoying every minute of every day no matter what he was doing. I'm sure he had lots of stress in his life, trying to decide what to do and get everything done to his standards, but he always seemed to handle it."

The Fultons have appreciated the outpouring of love from the community, including so many at the funeral who told Paul and Kayleen that Dylan was their best friend, knowing they really were all his friends. They daily pray for the safety of their children.

"It's something you do not wish upon anyone," Kayleen said. "People have come through our doors—there are too many—who have lost a child, whether to suicide or something else. There are so many people who have that look in their eye, because they know it could happen to them."

Chadron State national bull riding champs to be inducted into school’s Athletic Hall of Fame

Will Farrell and Dustin Elliott, both national bull riding champions, will be among the eight former Chadron State College athletes inducted into the school's Athletic Hall of Fame this fall. The ceremonies will be at 6 p.m. on Saturday, Oct. 27 following the Eagles' football game with New Mexico Highlands.

Four football players and two basketball players are the other inductees. All were standouts around the turn of the century.

Farrell and Elliott combined to win the College National Finals bull riding top honors three times in four years. Farrell was the winner as a freshman in 1999 and again as a senior in 2002. Elliott won the title as a sophomore in 2001.

Farrell was the Wyoming State High School bull riding champ as a senior at Hot Springs County High School in Thermopolis in 1997. He enrolled at Chadron State at least partially because his girlfriend and wife-to-be, Shawna, was on the Eagles' basketball team.

He qualified for the college finals in Casper all four years.

As a freshman, Farrell placed at six of the nine rodeos to easily win the regional championship. At the national finals in Casper, he was bucked off his first bull, placed fourth in both of the next go-rounds and was second in the final go-round with 74 points to win the title by one point over defending national champion Corey Navarre of Southwest Oklahoma.

The next year, Farrell won the bull riding at four of the 10 rodeos in the region and was fourth in two more. At the college finals, he won the first go-round with 80 points, tied for fifth in the second go-round, but was bucked off during the next two go-rounds to finish seventh in the final standings.

He did not ride any of the three bulls at the 2000-01 finals rodeo, but that was the year Elliott, caught fire and became the champion.

It was Will's turn to win the whole shebang again the next year, giving CSC three national bull riding champs in four years for one of the college's all-time great sports accomplishments.

Farrell proved early that he intended to make his senior year a good one. He won two of the fall rodeos and placed second and third at the remaining two to build a big lead in the standings. He won another first and a third during the spring to lock up his third regional championship.

At the college finals, Farrell rode Widow Maker, Gunpower and Grim Reaper in the first three go-rounds. While he did not make it to the eight-second whistle on Desert Storm in the last performance, no one else stayed aboard in the finals either, and he won the championship by 26.5 points.

Farrell rode 51 of the 82 bulls he drew for an amazing 62 percent during his college career.

Although injuries sidelined him not too long after he had concluded his college career, Farrell qualified for the PRCA National Finals in 2003. He is now a "lead lactman" for Merit Energy in an oil fields near Thermopolis. Will and Shawna have four children—Roedy, Kamryn, Logann and Ben. Each of the oldest three has already won at least one saddle at youth rodeos.

Elliott came to Chadron State after winning the Oregon High School Rodeo bull riding as a senior at Grant Union High School at John Day, Ore., in 1999.

He finished fourth in the Central Rocky Mountain standings as a freshman at CSC, was the regional runner-up the next year and rode all four of his bulls at the CNFR finals in Casper to claim the national championship. The 79 points he scored in the third go-round was the top score entering the finals. During the finals, he stayed aboard at least 10 seconds because the crowd noise was so loud he could not hear the whistle.

Elliott also qualified for the CNFR the next two years. While he did not place either time, he continued to ride extra well. During his college career, he stuck 47 of the 77 bulls he drew and often competed at other rodeos. Just a few days before he and Cynthia, whom he had met at CSC, were married in May 2003, he scored 84 points to win the bull riding and earn $2,156 at a PRCA rodeo in Kansas City.

Then he really hit the big time. Just a year after he had concluded his college career, he was the PRCA world champion. He rode a remarkable 73 percent of his bulls that year and earned $193,000. The next two years he rode something like 60 percent and placed fourth in the world standings with earnings of about $159,000 each year.

One of his big paydays in 2006 was at Cheyenne's Frontier Days, when he scored 91 point in the finals to claim top honors and collect nearly $20,000.

When Cynthia delivered twins Ethan and Emma prematurely on Christmas Eve 2006, he cut back on his rodeo schedule and pretty much became a full-time dad, particularly after Cynthia resumed teaching business at North Platte High School.

That's why his name disappeared from the PRCA's top 15 list for a few years. But he returned to the finals in Las Vegas again in 2010 and also was a Pro Bull Riders finalist five times.

He was within striking range of qualifying for the PRCA finals again in 2013 when he announced his retirement. He now coaches the rodeo team at North Platte Community College and also owns and operates haying and trucking businesses.

–Chadron State College

Protect the gut

As societal demands increase for livestock producers to reduce the use of antibiotics, so have the number of products hitting the shelves that aim to boost animal health, prevent disease and treat illnesses without antibiotics.

On August 8, 2018, Precision Health Technologies, LLC, of Brookings, S.D., announced it had acquired the marketing distribution rights for the line of Grazix natural animal health products. Under this agreement, Precision Health assumes all distribution, marketing and product support activities for Grazix products.

So how has Grazix captured the power of plants to promote health and wellness in hogs, poultry, dairy and beef cattle? The two main ingredients may surprise people — green tea and pomegranates.

"LiveLeaf is now focusing on human health, and so this shifts the geographical focus to the Midwest where there are many livestock operations nearby," said Zachary Wochok, Grazix Animal Health president. "Precision Health is positioned to advance the Grazix brand and work with distributors to meet the needs of the animal agriculture industry."

Precision Health Technologies was founded in 2015 and is headquartered at South Dakota State University's Research Park.

"Our location is separate from the university but allows us to work with SDSU's researchers, student talents and laboratories to assist us in trials and development of products," said Little. "It's a unique situation that gives us the opportunity to tap the resources of the university in a public/private manner. We are currently developing additional animal health products for companion animals and equine, and we are committed to creating products that support the animal microbiome for optimal animal health."

Daniel Little, DVM, Precision Health Technologies president and CEO, says producers are looking for antibiotic alternatives.

"To address this, the Grazix team has created stable polyphenol-oxidant complexes that mimic intact plant cells and use enzymes in the gut to target bioactivity that may provide immunologic benefits."

While producers are familiar with using pre- and pro-biotics to promote "good" bugs within the intestine to ward off the "bad" bugs, Grazix products work differently by providing a gut barrier to protect the normal microbiome and improve tolerance for a wide range of production stresses.

Matt Schutte, technical sales representative for Healthy Farms by Bioverse in Worthington, Minn., works in distribution and sales of the Grazix line of products, and he says the products are uniquely formulated to work as a shield of protection to promote optimal health in animals.

Schutte said, "Grazix products work much different than probiotics because they don't compete with other bacteria; instead they utilize the power of a plant's immune system, where every single cell of the plant has the ability to fight infection and disease, to reduce damage from disease, speed recovery, isolate toxins and pathogens, slow down the spread of viruses and prevent them from entering cells. It's really a unique product that is a natural and effective way to reduce diseases in livestock."

The Grazix lineup includes Porcine F, Porcine W, Bovine C and Avian S, and each is formulated to be administered orally or added to water during times of transition or digestive stress.

"Our producers have seen a reduction of the number of days an animal will have scours, and depending on the disease and severity, they will see a similar response as antibiotics," said Schutte. "At first glance, it sounds like foo-foo dust, but it's actually a great all-natural product that yields fast results for our producers."

A recent study conducted in the U.S., looked at 40 litters (over 500 piglets) at three sow farms. These piglets were monitored and at the first sign of scour, a single serving of Grazix supplement was administered; then the time to resolution was recorded.

The results, said Schutte, showed that 83 percent of all piglets under eight days of age had their scour resolved with one administration no later than the next day. The experiment showed an increase in beneficial bifidobacteria and lactobacillus activity, a reduction in harmful clostridia, an improvement in intestinal barrier function, reduced gut inflammation post challenge and no significant effect on blood chemistry.

A second study, conducted in the Netherlands, evaluated 43,745 piglets on 20 farms. These piglets were monitored for scours and mortality for three months, and if they got sick, the piglets were treated with either antibiotics or with Grazix supplements in the water for one day (and no antibiotics). The results indicated the mortality rate of piglets after an administration of antibiotics was 21 percent, and with Grazix, it was 11 percent.

For cattle producers, Bovine C works in similar fashion as the Porcine F and W and is a great tool to treat scours in calves with an oral treatment and in a milk replacer, say representatives.

"One of our customers uses Bovine C for his replacement heifer calves each year," said Schutte. "He purchases 400 heifer calves annually from different dairies, and he's always battling coccidiosis, rotavirus and scours during the winter months. Since starting this product, he has seen a reduction of scours breakouts in his heifers by 90 percent, and he says it takes a couple days less time than usual to recover from scours."

Bovine C, he said, can be used a few different ways. For example, dairy producers are more likely to use this as a preventative measure and prefer to administer the product through the milk replacer, giving a dose for three days at feeding time just as the label describes. However, because of the nature of cattle ranching, many beef producers who use the Grazix products opt to only treat sick calves and administer a one-time mega-dose orally.

"It becomes very economical to use because producers can reduce the dose on the label rate depending on the severity of the case," said Schutte. "The label instructs producers to administer Grazix to a calf 30 ml twice a day for three days, so 180 ml total. One of my producers has seen a reduction in scours even by administering a single dose of just 40 ml, and that becomes extremely cost effective. Our farmers are really great judges of the product. When a sick calf has a quick turnaround after a single dose, that's the ultimate test."

Grazix is a subsidiary of LiveLeaf, Inc. in California, but it now has a prominent place in the Midwest, which opens new opportunities for the region's producers to access the products.

To learn more about the Grazix products, visit phtllc.com or contact Dr. Little at 605-696-5606.

So far, 24 locations, 57 owners in 16 Colo., counties have been identified with 80 to 100 that have moved off the locations

As the Equine Infectious Anemia investigation continues and the retest dates draw nearer, Colorado State Veterinarian Keith Roehr wants to make clear the requirements to move horses across state lines.

"Right now, our focus is on finding horses in Colorado that left the quarantined premises and then retest between Sept. 19 and Oct. 19 when these horses need to be re-bled so we can begin to release those orders," he said.

The challenge, he said is the brand inspection papers required to move horses require a name but little other contact information, making the job of contacting the new owners difficult. He said on Sept. 10, he had identified 24 locations and 57 owners in 16 counties with an additional estimated 80 to 100 horses in the state that moved off the locations.

One of the most significant challenges now, he said, is the number of horses brand inspected to move to a different state that never actually left. That may be the result of a period of time in holding to improve the horse's health or other factors not reflected in the brand inspection paperwork.

"The bigger issue to me is when these horses are shipped from locations in Colorado, it's amazing how few of them left without a certificate of veterinary inspection," he said. "The compliance with entrance requirements in other states seems to be very low and that, I think, is not a change in regulations but recognition by those people who caused those horses to be moved to other states to understand the requirements and follow them."

All states, Roehr said, require a certificate of veterinary inspection and a negative EIA test to enter. The purpose of the brand inspection, conversely, is to ascribe ownership of the horse. Regardless of the purpose of the move, be it for a change of ownership or even shipment to slaughter, the requirements are the same.

"About 75 percent of the horses that left the quarantined facility got an EIA test," he said. "There's pretty good compliance with that. Not many of them at all obtained a certificate of veterinary inspection. The other 25 percent of the horses that didn't have that EIA test, we're not aware of how many of those horses were bled before they left the state."


Civil and criminal penalties are a possibility for those who ignore the necessary negative EIA test and certificate of veterinary inspection for horses leaving the state. Roehr said communicating this requirement to owners who may not be aware, or may choose to ignore the requirements, is key though the burden then falls upon the owner. Movement within the state becomes more difficult to track in investigations like this one as movement within the state requires only a brand inspection.

"The point going forward is this isn't just about Equine Infectious Anemia," he said. "This is about animal health, traceability that's applicable with any horse disease. This time it was EIA but there's eight to 10 other diseases that arise that, in some cases, are much more communicable than Equine Infectious Anemia."

Failure to comply with the requirements that help ensure animal health and traceability puts other Colorado horses at risk of disease, as well as horses in other states when horses can't be located to be either inspected or tested in a timely manner, he said. An EIA test takes only a matter of hours to complete and Roehr said veterinarians are typically able to offer a certificate of veterinary inspection in a short amount of time.

"This is pretty unique," he said. "If you look at the way cattle move there is better compliance with health certificates and other required testing than what we're seeing in this segment of the equine industry today."

Roehr said once an EIA test, certificate of veterinary inspection, or brand inspection is completed at a location, that premises has an identification number, which assists in locating horses or in assuring compliance. His recommendation is an annual EIA test.

The information about the affected horses, owners, and premises under hold and/or quarantine orders have not been released and is protected by exceptions to the Colorado Open Records Act. According to Colorado Revised Statutes Title 35 Agriculture, confidential commercial data including ownership, numbers, locations and movements of livestock; financial information; the purchase and sale of livestock; account numbers or unique identifiers issued by government or private entities; operational protocols; and participation in an all-hazards security system may be denied disclosure under Colorado statute. Additionally, access may be denied in regard to information related to livestock disease or injury that would identify a person or location.

Again, Roehr is asking anyone who purchased or received a horse in Weld County between July 18 and Aug. 20 who has not received notification from the office of the Colorado State Veterinarian, to contact the office as soon as possible. F

Under scrutiny: Wild horse sterilization plan for Oregon goes forward, with opposition

The Bureau of Land management will move forward with a mare sterilization plan for horses in Oregon.

The comment period for BLM's plan was extended to Sept. 2, in the hopes that more original comments would come in.

"As we predicted, extremist groups flooded the BLM with comments in opposition of the study and 10-year management plan, mostly in the form of auto-generated comments. There were over 8,000 identical comments submitted from activists," Protect the Harvest writes on its website. "These groups have a long track record of stopping the BLM from being able to make practical and logical steps to properly manage the horse populations and rangelands."

On Aug. 8, CSU's Vice President for Research, Dr. Alan Rudolph, released an email statement saying, "After careful consideration of multiple factors during the 30-day public comment period for the Warm Springs, OR, mare spay project, Colorado State University is withdrawing our partnership on the surgical spaying of mares."

He added that the decision to withdraw was made with the support of the involved researchers.

"As a state university, we have investigated alternative population and birth control measures for wild animals for more than 25 years and remain committed to continuing to explore solutions to an unmet need," he said.

According to the group, BLM plans are slightly revised but will take a step forward.

The study will evaluate safety, complication rate, feasibility, and impacts. In conjunction with the study, the Burns District – BLM proposes a 10-year population management plan for the Warm Springs HMA. http://protecttheharvest.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/08/CoverLetter_SpayEA_AdditionalComment_signed.pdf

Activists groups have dubbed the plan barbaric and praised CSU for backing out.

"CSU is a highly respected university with a top-notch veterinary program. The BLM somehow got the University to agree to participate in this ill-advised plan to study the efficacy, applicability and complication rate of spaying wild mares. The decision makers at the university must not have done their due diligence. If they had, they would have seen the horror behind the procedure, known as ovariectomy via colpotomy. This blind procedure, with the veterinarian's arm up the mare's vaginal cavity, rips out the ovaries by twisting, severing and pulling with a metal rod and chain called an ecraseur. It is considered so risky and dangerous to the animals involved, that it is not recommended for even tame domestic mares," In Defense of Animals wrote in a press release.

But veterinarians and horse enthusiasts argue differently.

Twelve selected spayed fillies were offered for sale at the 2017 Reno Snaffle Bit Futurity. By the time of the sale, all of the fillies were spayed, vaccinated and handled for 30 days. These fillies were also invited back to the 2018 Reno Snaffle Bit Futurity to compete in their own division for a $25 K purse.

"The goal of the Wild Spayed Filly Futurity is to showcase the significance and abilities of these resilient, tough and beautiful horses," Protect the Harvest writes. "It will also demonstrate their trainability and hopefully encourage more people to consider a horse from our American rangelands. A second and very important goal of the program is to help find economical, safe solutions in controlling the numbers of horses on American rangelands which will allow people to appreciate them in a healthy, balanced environment in the wild."

Protect the Harvest, an advocate of multiple use on Federal Lands, believes this method to not only be the safest, but also the most cost effective. According to researchers, the cost of each 15-minute surgery is about $300, less than one dose of injectable birth control vaccine involved in previous management studies.

As the management battle continues, congressmen continue to put in their two-cents.

Last year, the National Wild Horse and Burro Advisory Board raised the ire of Congressman Vern Buchanan (R-Florida), with discussion of euthanizing or selling, without conditions, up to 45,000 wild horses.

"It is disgraceful that the Board, whose purpose is to provide sound advice on the management of wild horses, would even consider euthanizing these horses as a plausible management technique," Buchanan's wrote in a letter to BLM officials.

His stand on the topic has gained the attention of the Humane Society of the United States (HSUS), who recently honored him as a "legislative leader" for his "support for outlawing horse slaughter, banning cosmetics testing on animals and protecting endangered species."

As of print date, BLM's plans are to continue. In a statement, BLM announced they intend to:

… use the same surgical protocol originally approved by the CSU IACUC. BLM-contracted veterinarians would be required to have experience performing ovariectomy via colpotomy and standing sedation on at least 100 ungentled, wild horse mares. The BLM and contracted veterinarians would monitor the mares during and after surgery to provide data for the three specific aims related to the surgical portion of the project (described above). Because the procedure would still be carried out by experienced contract veterinarians, and the surgical protocol is unchanged, the departure of CSU's team does not affect the procedure's anticipated outcomes.

Despite much-needed management, plans for a mare sterilization study in the Warm Springs Herd Management Area near Burns, Oregon has struggled to make it off paper and into the fields. In 2016, 21 research projects planned to manage populations levels were shut down by activists.

Recent plans to revive similar studies included Colorado State University and mare sterilization; however, in spite of the study being supported by the American Association of Equine Practitioners (representing 9,300 equine veterinarians), CSU decided to withdraw from the program due in large part to pressure exerted by Wild Horse activist groups. In the 2016 planned study, Oregon State University took the same path, backing down to activist pressure.

"The Bureau of Land Management – Burns District, in conjunction the United States Geological Survey have updated the proposed research project regarding the feasibility of the spay procedure (standing surgical spay – ovariectomy via culpotomy) with horses from the Warm Springs HMA in Oregon. This is the same spay procedure that was performed on the fillies in our Wild Spayed Filly Futurity program," the group shared.

"…The BLM must continue to pursue management actions to move toward achieving and maintaining the established appropriate management level (AML) on Warm Springs HMA and reduce the wild horse population growth rate in order to restore and maintain a thriving natural ecological balance and multiple-use relationship on public lands. USGS has updated their proposal to include only the behavioral research portion of the original proposal. Their study would take place on mares spayed by BLM as a management action," BLM shared in a statement.

Wild horses and burros have no natural predators, and current adoption rates are decreasing steadily each year, according to BLM statistics. With the dropping rates and minimal to no interventions, the herd population continues to grow. As of May 22, 2018, the BLM estimated public rangelands were home to nearly 82,000 wild horses and burros in 10 Western states – the largest population estimate since the 1971 Wild Free-Roaming Horses and Burros Act was passed – and more than three times the number the 26.9 million acres of public rangeland the habitat can sustainably support in conjunction with other authorized land uses. At the same time, the BLM continues to care for approximately 45,000 unadopted and unsold excess animals in its off-range corrals and pastures, costing taxpayers $50 million annually – nearly two-thirds of the Wild Horse and Burro Program annual budget. BLM adopted out only 4,099 animals in 2017. According to BLM, the rate of adoptions has stayed around that number since 1996, but the number of wild horses and burros on ranges has doubled since 2012.

Deb Greenough gets Pro Rodeo Hall of Fame nod

It was the fall of 1987 following one of the last big rodeos in Regina Saskatchewan and a long drive back to Montana. Deb Greenough had just gotten dropped off by two of his traveling partners who were on their way to compete in that year's NFR in Las Vegas.

"I remember watching their tail lights headed to Vegas and saying to myself, 'next year I'm not going to be left behind in a cold pickup—I'm going to make it to the NFR too,'" Deb Greenough of Billings, Montana, recounts.

That determination combined with his talent in bareback riding got Greenough to the next year's 1988 NFR and every NFR consecutively until 2000.

Most recently, Greenough's accomplishments and character resulted in him becoming one of this year's Pro Rodeo Hall of Fame inductees.

Getting inducted into the Pro Rodeo Hall of Fame "came as a total surprise" to Deb Greenough, the 1993 PRCA world champion bareback rider.

"As a kid, you never run around on a stick horse thinking that you'll get to that point [of becoming a part of the hall of fame]," Greenough explained.

Greenough's resume warrants a hall of fame nod. He qualified for the NFR 13 consecutive years between 1988 and 2000. In nine of those years he finished in the top five—three times in second place (1992, 1997, and 2000)—and in 1993 he won the title of world champion.

To become a part of the hall of fame, any one can nominate a rodeo contestant and then the selection committee narrows it down into an induction class.

Pro Rodeo Hall of Fame Director Kent Sturman explained that there is no set number of inductees each year that are selected by the committee. "Through the discussion and process they [the committee] narrow it down and the cream always seems to rise to the top," he said.

Sturman complimented Greenough's character and said that "He qualified [for the hall of fame] by winning a world title. He is an all around great guy in and out of the area. He was fair and honest and good with the fans and really promoted the PRCA in addition to his many years of NFR qualifications and his world title."

Greenough said that he went to a few rodeos in high school but didn't travel extensively. Most of his riding experience came from his time spent at Northwest College in Powell, Wyoming under coach Ike Sankey.

"He took me under his wing, and I learned a lot from him," Greenough said.

In those days he remembers getting on a horse basically every day to ride and practice.

After getting his PRCA card in 1986, Greenough faced "a true rookie year" until things started falling together.

In 1988, he qualified for his first NFR. In those first years Greenough explained that as "a rookie among veterans" he "didn't realize the caliber of people that he was competing against."

Things picked up for him in 1990 with wins at Calgary, Cheyenne, and Pendleton. His momentum carried on into the 1991 season as well.

In May of 1992 at the Cloverdale rodeo in British Colombia, Greenough's rigging came up over the horse's neck which resulted in him getting drug around a bit. His shoulder was hurt, but he decided to ride again and ended up tearing his biceps at the next rodeo he competed at.

After the injury, Greenough said "I wondered if I was done or if I could keep going."

He took a month and half off and then returned to the chutes in time for the 4th of July season.

Greenough explained that summer was about "taking care of this arm and making enough to keep going. But I really wasn't winning any firsts."

The end of September found him "going broke" which is when Greenough said "I knew that I had to start doing something."

He had been making really controlled "business man rides" to protect his arm, but at the end of the season he began taking more risks.

During the last week of the regular season, he was sitting at 17th in the world standings. His winnings in that week were enough to bump him up to 14th and get him a ticket to the NFR.

Greenough won the average in 1992 and finished 2nd overall—climbing 12 rankings at one competition.

After the season was over, Greenough was able to look back on the summer of 1992 and his injury and see that the summer spent focusing on form and crafting a controlled ride, made him an even more solid rider.

The next year he returned, determined to claim the championship, and took the 1993 world title in bareback.

Cleve Schmidt, one of Greenough's traveling partners, said "he was a pretty amazing guy to be with. He was always in a great mood, always trying to pick you up."

Schmidt also recalls that Greenough "was always an hour late when we met up for a rodeo, so we had to drive pretty fast to make it there."

In being inducted with this year's class, Greenough joins his great aunts and uncle Alice Greenough Orr, Margie Greenough Henson, and Turk Greenough who also have received hall of fame recognition for their world champion titles and part in pioneering the sport of rodeo and the PRCA.

"Rodeo has been in my family for generations," Greenough said.

His grandfather and father both ranched and rodeoed as well.

"When you live in that lifestyle, you want to get on something," he explained.

Greenough remembers getting on a calf for the first time at a branding at the age of four.

"Every little kid is blessed with a Shetland," he said, which added to his experience of holding on tight.

The summer between Greenough's 5th and 6th grade year his parents took him to a Little Britches rodeo in Billings, Montana. Unfortunately, he was unable to ride that year because his dad was judging the competition and some people thought that it wouldn't be fair.

Greenough remembers being "heart broken," but that only "fueled the fire."

The next year found him at the same rodeo ready to make his debut. At the rodeo, he asked his dad if he was going to help him practice. He replied "you don't need practice, all you need is try."

This advice sent a young Greenough off to the back of the chutes where he met a "young skinny kid" named Clint Branger who helped him get on his first steer. Branger, like Greenough, would also later go to make a name for himself in the PRCA.

Years after his first ride at that Little Britches Rodeo, his career came full circle and Greenough found himself at a rodeo in Billings in 2001 taking his last ride.

He had torn a groin muscle in the spring and had been dealing with the injury all summer. When fall and the NILE rodeo in Billings came around, he decided to make it his last.

Since retiring, Greenough has taken up horse shoeing and carpentry.

His oldest son Quinn, who traveled with Greenough as a baby, is working at making it as a bull rider. His younger three kids love their horses and might carry on the family tradition in rodeo as well.

"It was a wonderful life! Tons of great experiences and great people along the way!" Greenough said.

The induction ceremony added 10 new members to the hall of fame including the Black Hills Roundup committee. It was Aug. 3 and 4 in Colorado Springs, Colorado.

Beef improves performance of marathon runner

Pierre, SD – The distinctive bright red jerseys proudly representing South Dakota beef producers had a fantastic day running in this year's Sioux Falls Marathon on September 9, 2018. Team BEEF SD hosted over 15 of their own as they "Ran in Red" alongside 2,300 others from all over the country, competing in the 5K, 10K, half marathon or full marathon.

The South Dakota Beef Industry Council (SDBIC) in partnership with Sanford Heart Hospital and South Dakota State University meat science department encouraged participants to "refuel" after the big race by offering beef tri-tip sliders.

Team Beef members receive beef nutrition information to help them better understand how the high-quality, complete protein helps the body with maintenance, repair and growth of lean muscle mass. The protein found in beef also helps aid in optimal immune system function along with nutrients such as zinc, iron and B-vitamins that help keep the body healthy. Holly Swee, SDBIC director of nutrition states, "Team BEEF members are passionate about supporting South Dakota beef producers and promoting beef. They do this by being physically active, including nutritious beef in their training diet and being healthy role models while wearing the Team BEEF jersey throughout the year."

Long time Team BEEF member Bill Anderson ran the half marathon at Sioux Falls, but his training process wasn't easy. "After last year's race I changed my training. I increased my mileage and with the combination of hard speed training workouts, it began to take a toll on me. My 43-year old body wasn't responding to the training and the aches and pains pushed me to take days off I didn't want to take in order to prevent injury." says Anderson. After visiting with his coach, Anderson was told he was probably iron deficient and needed to increase iron intake to fuel red blood cells. As a Team BEEF member, Bill has always incorporated beef into his diet but in order to fully train for his races he needed to make slight changes to his diet to incorporate more beef and other iron rich vegetables on certain training days to reach that necessary iron level. His results? Positive. "I've ran three half marathons since last year's half. I've set personal records at each race I've ran, suffered no injuries, had fewer post run aches and pains, and reached a sub 90-minute half marathon goal that I had set for myself." Anderson can attest, "Pre-race fueling matters. I've been running for Team Beef now for five years, but just this year I realized the significance of what Team BEEF represents is to my running health and well-being. High-iron beef has made all the difference for my training and race performance."

September wraps up our Team BEEF program activities for the season. Team BEEF South Dakota is open to all South Dakotans who want to promote beef, be physically active and showcase eating beef in a healthy lifestyle. Registration for the 2019 team will open in December. For more information on the program and future announcements, follow us on Facebook or contact Holly Swee hswee@sdbeef.org.

–South Dakota Beef Industry Council

Montana wheat is right on track

The wheat harvest in Montana is getting close to being wrapped up for another year. According to three farmers from the state, so far, the crop is looking good.

"The farmers that I'm talking to are generally happy," said Lyle Benjamin of Sunburst in north central Montana.

Benjamin farms wheat, durum, small barley, chick peas, and lentils just south of the Canadian border.

"I would say that over the area the crops have been good with high quality yields that are just a touch over average," he reported.

Benjamin said that the barley crops in his region "got hit with late heat," so a lot of that grain will go into the feed market instead of going for malt. "It really needed one more rain storm in July," he explained.

Thankfully the wheat was more tolerant of the heat and is resulting in high protein and test weights.

The harvest itself isn't the main concern on farmers' minds so much as the trade situation. Montana exports 80 percent of its grains, so trade and the policies that affect trade, are important to agriculture in the state.

Currently the United States hasn't sold any wheat to China, it's number 6 exporter, since early in the spring. Trade deals typically take a while to evolve, but farmers are hoping that the issues will be resolved in the near future.

"So far we're seeing record movements of crops and really good rail movements," Benjamin explained. He went on to say that right now it's all old crop that's entering the trade rings.

South of Benjamin's operation, Ken Slezak of Shelby Montana said that his area is also experiencing a normal harvest.

Slezak is the grain department manager at CHS and said that "the crops are coming off pretty nicely."

He estimates that around 75 percent of the wheat is cut down and the rest should be finished within the next three weeks.

The wheat in his region is "running about normal," and he said that just south of Shelby there are some "beautiful crops."

As far as prices go, Slezak said that winter wheat is bringing $5.25 per bushel and spring wheat is worth about $5.50.

Benjamin also discussed prices and explained that "There was a good pricing opportunity in early August for guys to price crops if they made that move."

The weather is one aspect of agriculture that can make or break a growing season—if it is too dry, or if early hail storms damage crops like wheat, farmers may be forced to cut their grains for hay, but if the year is too wet that can change the crop quality as well.

According to Michelle Erikson-Jones from Broadview Montana just north of Billings, it was "a really wet year," for her part of the state.

"We had too much snow cover—at least in this area," she explained.

Jones is a 4th generation farmer along-side of her father and husband. Their operation produces wheat, small barley, alfalfa, forage grain, and other crops along with running a cow calf operation.

She reported that her region experienced "record breaking snow" this past winter that sat a little too long on their winter wheat crops.

"It definitely impacted the winter wheat in a negative way, but was good for the spring wheat," she reported.

Despite her experiences with excessive moisture and winter wheat, she said that other parts of Montana produced a "tremendous winter wheat crop."

All three producers explained that this year's moisture and lack of hail resulted in most all of the wheat crop going to grain instead of being put up for hay.

Jones also had some concerns about the current trade/export situation and explained that "prices are not terrible, but they're not as good as they could be if we had better export demand."

Along with running their own farms, both Jones and Benjamin serve on the Montana Grain Grower's Association board of directors and are the current president and vice president, respectfully.

The Montana Grain Growers Association focuses on representing the interests of Montana producers by paying attention to farm policies and working with Montana producers to advocate for beneficial legislature. The association also does outreach and lobbies at the state and national levels.

The Farm Bill is one piece of legislation that the group pays special attention to. Benjamin explained that the Farm Bill "has come full circle since I've come onto the board." He went on to say that the different cycles and changes that the Farm Bill has been through is interesting to study and be a part of.

Looking forward, farmers are watching the legislation that is currently being passed while experiencing a good winter and spring wheat crop in the last few weeks of harvest.

Chislic Circle: South Dakota town gains fame through first annual Chislic Festival

The quiet South Dakota town of Freeman — population 1,308 — is known as the Chislic capital of the world; yet outside of the 30 mile-radius of this small rural community (often referred to as the Chislic Circle), chislic is a relatively unknown dish.

Traditionally, chislic is salted, cubed mutton served on wooden skewers, deep-fat fried or grilled and served with a side of saltine crackers and a cold beverage.

The history of chislic has a great deal of mystery surrounding it and is frequently debated by the residents of the "Chislic Circle," which is a 30-mile radius around Freeman that includes Sioux Falls, Marion, Menno, Parker and Parkston.

Many credit Russian immigrant John Hoellwarth for bringing chislic to Freeman in the late 1800s, and since then, it's tradition for the community celebrate and socialize together by butchering a lamb and serving chislic for a crowd.

The dish is so iconic to the area and so unique to the state of South Dakota that in 2018, the state's legislators declared chislic the state's "official nosh."

Eight miles south of Freeman sits the Meridian Corner — a bar and grill owned by Roland and Jean Svartoien. Located at the junction of Highway 18 and 81, Meridian Corner serves chislic to locals and tourists alike, who stop in to enjoy the traditional Russian/German fare.

"We serve chislic with either lamb or mutton," said Abby Streyle, Meridian Corner manager. "The difference is really a personal taste preference. Lamb is lean and tender, and mutton is fatty and full of flavor. Both can be enjoyed with Greek salt, garlic salt or our house seasoning."

When Roland decided to add lamb chislic to the menu five years ago, the restaurant began sourcing meat from local sheep producers. Much like many of the local restaurants, Meridian Corner sources its mutton from the nearby Kaylor Locker, in the tiny town of Kaylor — population 47.

And though the Svartoiens are passionate about the restaurant business, they also have deep roots in agriculture, as well. Roland owns a custom harvesting and a trucking business and grew up watching his own father harvest wheat and run the restaurant.

"Meridian Corner was originally owned by Roland's parents — Paul and Marceen Svartoien," Streyle said. "They closed the business in 1989, and it sat empty for 21 years. When Roland's parents passed away, he purchased Meridian Corner from the estate and reopened the business once again. Today, we enjoy our loyal customers, and our customers enjoy the comfort food, including chislic, that we serve."

Chislic may be tradition in Freeman, but it's new and exciting in other parts of the country. Perhaps that's why Meridian Corner was invited to participate in Flavored Nation in early August. Held in Columbus, Ohio, Meridian Corner joined 49 other restaurants in serving up iconic state dishes for consumers to enjoy.

"Flavored Nation was a two-day event where people paid $45 to try ten meals from 10 different states," Streyle said. "We were one of two lamb dishes there; the other lamb entree was a chile relleno with lamb meatballs from Colorado."

Flavored Nation is truly a foodie's paradise. Other foods offered at the event included deep dish pizza from Illinois, Philly cheesesteak sandwiches from Pennsylvania, chicken fried steaks from Texas, shrimp gumbo from Louisiana, lobster rolls from Maine and even reindeer sausage from Alaska.

"We had so many people who stopped at our booth who had never heard of chislic and were really curious about the history," Streyle said. "Those of us in the Chislic Circle know chislic is made with lamb, but other places call their beef dishes 'chislic' and to us, those are steak tips. It was a neat opportunity to tell people about our state's history and the unique qualities of traditional chislic."

Two weeks prior to Flavored Nation, chislic was promoted in Freeman in another big way with the first annual South Dakota Chislic Festival.

"We have a great story to tell with chislic, and when we were looking for ways to attract people to our small community, we wanted to tie together and promote our heritage, the arts, community vibrancy, agriculture and tourism," said Joshua Hofer, one of the event organizers. "A couple of years ago, Freeman received a $100,000 grant from the National Endowment for the Arts, which really opened the door for us to host this event."

The South Dakota Chislic Festival included music, a bouncy castle, a raffle, door prizes and other entertainment. Held on the grounds of the Freeman pool and ballpark, it was free to the public and also featured a cooking contest, with 15 judges including politicians, media and chefs — selecting for best classic sheep, new age nosh (that included beef, deer, goat and buffalo), and the people's choice.

"We were expecting 1,500-2,000 people, just based off numbers from other summer festivals," Hofer said. "Within 30 minutes of opening the gate, we had gone from 2,000 people to 8,000 people."

As the crowds grew and the chislic ran low, people traveled to local restaurants to grab a bite to eat. At the Meridian Corner, it was a packed house.

"We went from just a few people to a packed house within minutes," Streyle said. "We had a line of people standing outside our drive-in window waiting to be served, and that night we ran through 160 dozen lamb and 120 mutton chislics. Fortunately, we had prepped extra meat in anticipation of the festival, but we still were three dozen short of what we needed."

"I'm so proud of our crew of volunteers who helped things run smoothly despite the massive crowds," Hofer added. "We are already gearing up for next year with plans for improvement and expansion. We are looking at expanding the layout, providing different vendor options and bringing in unique entertainment like mutton busting."

The second annual South Dakota Chislic Festival is scheduled for July 27, 2019, in Freeman. Proceeds of the event benefit the Freeman Community Development Corporation and the Heritage Hall Museum and Archives.

"The vast majority of the lamb served at the first festival came from South Dakota sheep producers," Hofer said. "We are already receiving calls from vendors who want to come next year and serve lamb chislic, so I see this as an exciting opportunity for local sheep producers who have branded meat programs to gain more notoriety and publicity for their products."

To learn more about the South Dakota Chislic Festival, go to http://www.sdchislicfestival.com. F

How to build the best loading chute

Many ranchers have ways to load cattle into a stock trailer, but if they send calves or cull cows on a cattle truck or semi they need a loading chute. A good chute makes it easy to load or unload cattle, and is easy for the trucker to get to and away from.

Rusty Hamilton (Salmon, Idaho) hauls cattle all over the West and has loaded or unloaded at thousands of chutes—at ranch headquarters, sale barns, feedlots and more. Some chutes work better than others.

"For the floor, many people use wood (with cleats) or dirt and those give good traction for the cattle. I've loaded and unloaded at chutes with expanded metal flooring and I don't like those; even though they are easier to keep clean because manure falls through, I don't like an open floor because cattle can look down through it and this can spook them," he explains.

Cleats on a wood floor are important for traction, and Hamilton suggests bolting wood strips onto the floor. "If they are just nailed, and cows come sliding out of the truck (if there's moisture on the flooring) and hit the cleats they pull the nails right out—and then you have sharp nails sticking up."

Angle is also important. "The ramp needs to be at least 10 to 12 feet long but doesn't have to be much longer, because you are only going from ground level up to 36 to 48 inches to get into the truck or cattle trailer. I've loaded cattle up some 6 foot ramps, however, and they will do it but it's a pain; some of them balk if it's that steep," says Hamilton.

Width is also important. You don't want a chute too narrow for big cattle, but you don't want it so wide that smaller cattle try to turn around. "About 30 to 36 inches is probably as wide as you want it. This may be a little tight for a big bull, but for cows and calves it works pretty well," he says.

The loading area needs to be big enough that trucks can turn around and back up to the chute easily. Avoiding sloped areas is best, he said. "They really need at least 200 feet by 200 feet in front of the loading chute to easily turn around and back in there. Sometimes we have to do it in smaller spaces, but it's trickier. As long as you have a straight shot at it—so drivers can pull up and back into the chute—and not have a sharp corner when they pull out from the chute, it works ok."

Hamilton has a couple of tips for what not to do when building a loading chute.

"Don't build it inside a corral. That's fine when the corrals are dry, but in winter or spring it gets muddy and slick (or boggy) and hard for trucks to get in and out." The space for maneuvering a big truck may be limited unless the corral is large.

"Don't put a loading chute alley on the same alley where cattle are moved toward the squeeze chute. Some people do that to save space, but the cows don't want to go that direction and tend to balk when you try to load them. They associate it with the working chute," says Hamilton.

You want a good corral design for getting cattle sorted and moved into a loading chute. Sometimes pens are awkward for loading. "I recommend at least a couple gates in the alleyway, and a gate near the bottom of the loading chute, so you can close it off. Then if a few cattle come out you are not unloading the whole load," he says.

"Make the sides of the loading chute solid (wood or metal), so cattle can't see through it as they go up the ramp. It's just like a working chute; if they can't see out they tend to go better without balking at something they see off to the side, and they'll follow the cow ahead of them. If you put a slight turn to the alley leading to the ramp, this is better than a straight chute because they don't see what's happening at the truck and tend to just follow the cow ahead because they think they are getting away," he explains.

He also recommends having a walkway up the loading chute so people can go along it if necessary, to encourage a reluctant animal. "I would also put a gate at the top so a person can come out of the loading chute (after following a bunch of calves, for instance), and walk back down the walkway. If the chute has solid sides it is really hard to climb out; you need a gate to go in and out of the truck or chute," he says.

"Many people put a swinging gate at the top so it can be adjusted in case the truck is not exactly perfectly straight against the chute; they can move the gate a little to close a gap, but if the chute has solid sides I'd still put a gate at the top so a person can get through it—like an escape door in a trailer. If something is coming after you, it's good to have a gate and not have to try to scramble up a solid wall!"

RANCHER PERSEPECTIVE – Reuben Olson, who ranches near Prairie City, South Dakota, has several loading chutes, but his main chute is made of wood. "It is not very steep; it is 16 feet long. We have a lift on it so we can adjust the height. We can drop it down to load a stock trailer and raise it to various heights to load different size trucks. It is about 3 feet wide, with solid sides. Cattle will go up the chute a lot better if they can't see through the side or the bottom; there's nothing spooky to distract them on the outside.

"I talked with one guy who built his ramp in stair-step fashion–like going up short little steps, and the cattle go up it very well, and it isn't at all slippery," says Olson.

Some people build up an area for the chute (or have trucks coming to it on a lower level) so the floor is dirt or gravel rather than having a ramp. "Many sale barns have a chute with dirt floor and this is good footing. The cattle don't have to go up a ramp; they walk straight onto the truck on the same level. I think that would be ideal," he says.

Holding pens behind the chute should be user-friendly, to get the cattle in. "If the loading chute is next to the gate where they ordinarily go out of the corral, you can line up the pens so cattle are moving in a circle and know this is the direction to go out of the corral. If they always go out that corner, they naturally want to go that way," he explains.

Brian Glass and Kent Wilkinson, also of Prairie City, built two loading chutes in Glass's shop last winter out of steel. One of the biggest challenges was moving the heavy chute outside and into place.

"We used oilfield pipe for the frame (posts and base), and sheet metal for the sides," says Glass. The sheet metal was 3/16ths thickness, and 4 by 8 foot sheets. "We used quarter-inch plate for the ramp. I made a double chute—side by side—one at ground level with just a dirt floor for loading stock trailers, and the metal ramp for the loading chute for semis."

The quarter-inch plate for the ramp was heavy and awkward to handle but made a solid, durable floor. "We used old steel posts that were bent or too short for cattle fences as treads for the floor," says Glass. These were welded onto the metal plate, for traction. Eventually he plans to make a small ramp for the trailer-loading chute so calves can step right into the trailer and not have to jump up.

"The metal ramp for the truck chute works nicely. One neighbor said we should have used wood (bridge planks) because metal would be too noisy. But the cattle loaded very well up the metal ramp and it wasn't noisy because everything was welded solid and didn't rattle. I figured the quarter inch plate would last a lot longer than wood."

The chute is 36 inches wide. "It could be a little narrower but a big bull will fit through this, and when are loading calves if one calf stops another one can go by it. The ramp is about 16 feet, but 3 feet of that is a level landing at the top. The 13 feet is a gradual incline and then there's the flat spot where they walk into the cattle truck. I saw one like that and thought it was a good idea—so the cattle are not scrambling upward as they go into the truck," says Glass.

"I put a door so you can walk through, and not have to crawl over the solid side. I also put a door up front on the trailer side, so you can get in and out and slide the trailer gate," he explains.

The sides of the chute are 5-foot 2-inch height from floor to top. "This is the height I build free-standing panels; cattle don't try to jump over," says Glass.

"It took a little longer to build and more material than we thought, but will last a long time—much longer than wood. We used 2 7/8 inch oilfield pipe for the bottom frame and 2 3/8 drill steel pipe for the posts. We made a bottom base and welded the posts to the frame; the posts are not set in the ground. If necessary I could lift and move it to a different spot."

Wilkinson says these chutes will last beyond their lifetimes. "We put conveyer belting on one side of his to help buffer and muffle the sound."

For anyone trying to build a metal chute, Wilkinson and Glass recommend making sure you have extra time, and some help to hold everything. "It's very heavy material, and squaring up the posts on top of that pipe is tricky and you need an extra hand," says Glass. "It was really good having the neighbors help." Kent Wilkinson and his father Jim helped put the chutes together.

Some of the angles were also tricky, but doable. "I used a plasma cutter, but mainly a chop saw. I created a saddle at the end of my pipes, to touch each other, rather than a straight cut, so there wasn't so much gap to weld. It fits better and saves a lot of welding," he says.

"Sometimes a trucker is in a hurry or not careful when backing up and hits a chute pretty hard. The wooden ones don't hold up very well with that kind of abuse, and they weather too much. Metal will last a lot longer," says Wilkinson.