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State Rep. Winfred Dukes shows off his livestock skills

Rep. Dukes was partnered with livestock showman Savannah Lambert of the Seminole County FFA Chapter and was given two hours to learn how to wash, fit and show a heifer. (Special Photo)

Rep. Dukes was partnered with livestock showman Savannah Lambert of the Seminole County FFA Chapter and was given two hours to learn how to wash, fit and show a heifer. (Special Photo)

PERRY _ This past weekend, State Rep. Winfred Dukes and State Sen. Freddie Powell Sims, both of Albany joined other Georgia legislators to compete in the Third Annual Legislative Livestock Showdown in Perry.

Leaving their suits and ties behind, Georgia legislators were in cowboy boots and jeans during the 2013 Georgia National Fair for the Legislative Livestock Showdown at the Sutherland Livestock & Equine Arena. Co-sponsored by the Georgia Department of Agriculture and the Georgia National Fair, this event brings together members of the Georgia General Assembly with members of Georgia’s FFA and 4-H organizations.

Dukes was partnered with livestock showman Savannah Lambert of the Seminole County FFA Chapter and was given two hours to learn how to wash, fit and show a heifer.

“This is a great opportunity for our state leaders and the future agri-leaders to get to know one another and have some fun while illustrating the importance of positive youth development programs like 4-H and FFA,” said Gary W. Black, Georgia Agriculture Commissioner.

The House team was led House Agriculture & Consumer Affairs Chairman Tom McCall as team captain, along with Rep. Brooks Coleman, Rep. Margaret Kaiser, Rep. Roger Bruce, Rep. Tom Kirby and Dukes.

The Senate team was captained by Senate Agriculture & Consumer Affairs Chairman John Wilkinson and includes Lt. Governor Casey Cagle, Sen. Bill Health, Sen. Freddie Powell Sims, Sen. Valencia Seay, and Sen. Mike Crane.

“The Georgia National Fair is proud to be the site for the third Legislative Livestock Showdown,” said Randy Moore, Executive Director of Georgia National Fairgrounds. “This is a great experience for our state legislators to learn what it takes to prepare an animal for showing. The Georgia National Fair thanks the members for sharing their time with our youth at the Fair.”

The two legislative groups, along with assistance from 10 experienced 4-H and FFA livestock show participants, showed in a showmanship competition where legislators were judged on how they handled their steers and heifers in the showmanship ring. Points were tallied to determine the winning team and this year’s trophy went to the Senate.