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Longhorns make first-time appearance at Cottonwood County Fair

WINDOM, Minn. -- There are two new 900-pound additions to this year's Cottonwood County Fair in Windom. Sally, Cypress and their calves -- Grace and Annie -- are the first of their breed to be entered into the Cottonwood County Fair. The Texas Lo...

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Wilson Hochstein of Windom is the first Cottonwood County 4-Her to enter a Texas Longhorn cow into the county fair in Windom. (Alyssa Sobotka / The Globe)

WINDOM, Minn. - There are two new 900-pound additions to this year’s Cottonwood County Fair in Windom.

Sally, Cypress and their calves - Grace and Annie - are the first of their breed to be entered into the Cottonwood County Fair. The Texas Longhorn cattle are owned by the Hochstein family of Windom.

Wilson Hochstein, 9, entered Sally and Grace as a commercial cow-calf pair for the beef show, and Cypress and Annie as a registered cow-calf pair.

“Otherwise you’d be competing against yourself,” said Wilson’s father, Jamey.

Jamey said the family was not positive they could enter the breed, since they had never seen Longhorns at the Cottonwood County Fair before. He called ahead, and requested a larger pen.

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Getting them into the pen was not the challenge.

“Getting them through the chute to weigh them was a little difficult,” Jamey said.

He compared the way the Longhorns maneuver their horns to the way someone would move furniture. For Sally and Cypress, that amounts to about a 60-inch span from tip to tip.

“They’re pretty good about it, because they know exactly where their horns are and how to weave them,” Jamey said.  

The logistics of the horns was something the family considered when determining how to enter them into the fair.

“Because they have horns we thought we’d enter them as cow-calf instead of trying to break them to lead them,” Wilson said.

The purebred Longhorn pairs will be judged from their pens Thursday morning.

There’s plenty of advantages of raising Longhorns, Jamey said.

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The Longhorn could be considered the cow version of a goat, which will eat just about anything. They also calve easily and have leaner meat, which appeals to people watching their diet or concerned about purchasing “heart healthy” meat.

Wilson also brought another unique animal to the fair. He was the only 4-H’er to participate in Wednesday’s horse show with a mule. He and Candy competed in the western and halter classes.

There is plenty of livestock at the Cottonwood County Fair this week. The beef and sheep shows will be Thursday. Friday shows include swine, dairy, rabbit, goat, poultry, cat, dog and pets.

Related Topics: CATTLE
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