XENIA — Kaitlyn Hutchison was nearly in tears Sunday morning as hustled to the rabbit showmanship judging. A day later she was all smiles when she found out she had won first place in the senior division.
Hutchinson, 14, was in the middle of her interview for fair princess as the showmanship was ending. The judge dragged it out as long as he could, allowing the Country Rebels 4-H member a chance to grab her rabbit, lab coat and try to collect herself.
“That was my biggest fear that I wasn’t going to be here on time,” the Xenia resident said. “I was kind of nervous. I had lots of people on the rabbit committee helping calm me down. I was just trying not to mess up. I had to try to remember what I studied before.”
And after taking each contestant around to each rabbit, the judge brought Hutchison and her older sister, Jackie, to the judging table indicating the competition was down to the top two. That made Kaitlyn Hutchison very hoppy, uh, happy.
“I knew I had placed,” she said, adding that it was extra special to finish one-two with her sister. “I was really excited. “
She was also first place in commercial pre-junior doe and was reserve grand champion for meat pen.
Sarah Bogan made a nice haul during the rabbit judging as well. The 13-year-old from Xenia had the grand champion meat pen, best single fryer, first in intermediate showmanship and second in intermediate judging.
The grand championship goes to the best-shaped meat pen. Bogan, an eighth-grader at Warner Middle School, was third a couple years ago and used that experience to her advantage this year, knowing to pick the best shaped rabbit of the bunch.
“I was kind of like really excited,” The Noah’s Ark 4-H member said. “I was more shocked. As I was going up (to a higher class) I got nervous.”
Samantha Horning was third showmanship in the senior division (14 and older) followed by Emma Fowler and Reagan Sanders. Meghan Snyder was second in the intermediate division (11-13), followed by Hailie Philips, Connor Miller and Jack Martin. Samantha Thomas was first in the beginner division (8-10), followed by Maggie Miller, Meri Miller, India Crenshaw and Kiara Schroeder.
Jackie Hutchison won the rabbit judging senior division, followed by Horning, Samantha Barnett, Zachary Caserta and Grace Lucas. Connor Miller was first in intermediate, followed by Bogan, Martin, Savannah Stucky and Philips. Schroeder won the beginner division with Maggie Miller second, Abby Brown third, Thomas fourth and Jordan Crenshaw fifth.