Things are off to an exciting start at the Carter County Junior Livestock Show, especially for the Bray brothers of Wilson. Slade, a third grader at Wilson Elementary, took the top spot while his older brother Dakota came in second place during Wednesday’s barrow (male pig) competition.
Dakota said that he has been showing pigs for about four years.
“Our friends showed pigs, and one day my dad came home and said hey, you’re going to show a pig this year. So I really had no choice, but I ended up liking it,” Dakota said with a laugh.
The brothers get their pigs in October, then they raise and care for them until it’s time for the show. Dakota said the most difficult part of raising the pigs is fitting everything into his schedule.
“I play sports, and with school and everything else it’s hard to get everything in,” Dakota said. “You wake up at 6:30 a.m., feed them, then get ready for school. Then when you come home you go straight out to the barn to clean the pens and feed them. It’s a lot of fun, and we aren’t lazy and have something to do.”
Dakota said that they will have a break from the
pigs until next fall. His younger brother said that they have raised summer pigs in years prior.
“We aren’t showing summer pigs this year though,” Slade said. “It’s way too hot.”
The brothers also placed in the showmanship competition. The awards for showmanship are broken up into three age categories:  ages eight to 12, ages 13 to 15, and ages 16 to 18. Slade finished in first place in his age category for showmanship while Dakota finished second place in his age category.