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Kruses celebrate 15 years at World Dairy Expo

By Jean Caspers-Simmet
simmet@agrinews.com

Date Modified: 11/21/2012 1:17 PM

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MADISON, Wis. — "Shavings colors may change but for 15 years our blood, sweat and tears have gotten us here," read a colorful poster next to where P & A Ayrshires was stalled.

Tom and Sara Kruse have been showing at World Dairy Expo for 15 years and as they had their sons, Kaleb, 14, Cole, 12, and Carter, 10, they came along too. They farm near Dyersville, Iowa.

Their poster celebrated the milestone and thanked the expo for the memories and friends. During the past 15 years, the Kruses have won 118 medals at the expo, including Grand Champion Ayrshire in 2003, Reserve Grand Champion Ayrshire in 2004, Junior Champion in 2011 and Reserve Junior Champion in 2009 and 2010. They were Premier Exhibitor in 2007 and 2009.

This year, the Kruses showed eight head of their own. Onword Swiss of Oelwein was also in their string with seven cattle.

Both herds did well.

Two of the Kruses' fall heifer calves placed fourth and sixth, and a sister, which the Kruses sold at the national sale, placed fifth. Their spring heifer calf was second in the junior show and fifth in the open show. Their winter heifer calf was third in the junior show and seventh in the open show.

Their junior two-year-old, Onword Wilton April, placed second in her class. Junior three-year-old, P & A Rawhide Betsy, was fifth in the junior show, 10th in the open show and eighth place Futurity. Five-year-old cow, Bar-Vue Goldy-ET, won second in her class and honorable mention Grand Champion.

"It was a really good day," Sara said.

Logan Worden's aged cow, Onword Diablo Adeline, received Reserve Grand Champion Female of the Brown Swiss Junior Show. Jacob Worden's summer yearling heifer, Onword Reality Annie-ET, placed first in its class.

Cole Kruse was seventh junior in Youth Showmanship, and Onword Swiss and P & A Ayrshires won a herdsmanship award.

Tom Kruse helped run the World Ayrshire Event Sale with Kaleb, Cole and Carter Kruse doing the leading. After the show, Tom headed back to their farm, and Sara stayed to manage the string.

"I have a good crew and the Wordens, who tie in with me, help, too," Sara said.

The Kruses milk 86 cows and should be up to 96 head within the next few months. Their herd consists of registered Ayrshires, Holsteins and Jerseys, which the boys own with Gene Henderson of Maynard.

"It's very expensive to come to World Dairy Expo to exhibit cattle but it's a passion we have, and we like to do that for our farm," Sara said. "It brings a lot of marketing opportunities that can happen down the road as far as offspring. We get to meet new people and make new friends."