Calf scramble gets 2023 Greene County Fair underway


XENIA — The typical capacity crowd at the grandstands watched the junior and senior calf scrambles kick off the 2023 Greene County Fair on Sunday.

Camaraderie within the event is a special part of its draw and while it can’t always be shown because of the spirit of the competition, it was felt between several of Sunday’s contestants.

In the ending minutes of the senior competition, Whitney Boggs was holding onto the final animal after Luke Magnone, Otis Boyette and Trevor Moore had rounded up the others.

Boggs held on for more than five minutes and several times put everything she had left to move the final few feet remaining. The crowd at one point in unison erupted into applause in an effort to encourage and help her muster up the strength to get across the finish line.

“I was just thinking, ‘Is this supposed to give me more energy?’ Because it didn’t,” Boggs said in noting how exhausted she felt in the moment. “I felt special though.”

After getting into the circle herself, grip on the reigns began to go out and she was hit in the chest. Eventually she had to let go.

“I was like, don’t look like a sissy,” Boggs said. “I didn’t want to be the one that didn’t get it done. … I held on way longer than I thought I would.”

Karlie Harlow looked on and wished there was a way she could have assisted Boggs.

“I was yelling even knowing she couldn’t hear me because I wasn’t able to when I was out there either,” Harlow said. “It’s hard to not want to help and it can be rough because you really want to.”

Watching on as it ran off loose again, Harlow was able to corral the cow and after needing to quickly switch out a harness was able to get it into the finishing circle to prevail after years of competing.

“Whitney is tough, she really is,” Harlow said. “I just saw [the cow] kicking and thought it may get loose, so I tried to stay close and then knew I had to hang on.”

First place finishers in the junior divisions included Henry Boyette (8 years old), Luke Mossing (9), Wyatt Smith (10), Addysan Eakle (11) and Bryce Atley (12-13).

Smith became a two-time winner. He also got knocked over at one point, but his perseverance came from what he described as not thinking and just not wanting to stop.

The best part of winning, he said, is the playful boasting he can again have.

“It means I get bragging rights,” Smith said.

And the cheers from the crowd is another bonus, which were plentiful from the audiences which shows up in support each year for the fair’s initial event.

A record number of 163 entrants made their way onto the dirt across the five junior divisions this year, showing off the bright future of potential future winners.

The early experiences they are gainning could build into friendships which were seen during the climax of the event.

“The group of us out there before hand, we’re all just laughing and having fun,” Harlow said.

“It was nice,” Boggs said of fellow competitors support. “Everybody was really supportive and they helped a lot.”

Contact Steven Wright at 937-502-4498 and follow on Twitter @Steven_Wright_.

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