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Grand champions

Agriculture students take home top honors at BCYLS

Each year, youth from all over Brazos County come together to showcase their projects within the agriculture and the family and consumer science fields. Livestock such as commercial steers, lambs, and rabbits are shown alongside baked goods, arts and crafts, horticulture, and photography projects are during the Brazos County Youth Livestock Show (BCYLS).

In the ag mechanics category under wildlife equipment, juniors Braxton Lindsey and Wyatt Robertson won Grand Champion with their wildlife observation tower. 

We decided to pick that project because we thought it would test our knowledge in many different areas,” Wyatt said.  ________________

Braxton and Wyatt had to overcome many obstacles during their process in hopes of being named Grand Champions. 

“The process was a very long one with many ups and downs, just like anything else,” said Wyatt. “Some days, we got a lot done, and others, we spent our time fixing mistakes we made on previous days. 

The entire project took Braxton and Wyatt three months to complete as they learned new skills.

“I don’t think we’d change much if we could go back in time,” Wyatt said. “We learned so much from our mistakes that we otherwise would never have learned, so I’m thankful for the process.”

On the other hand, Braxton recognizes that making mistakes and growing their skill set helped them a lot, but he also identified how they would improve the project if they were to build it again.

“I would not make the legs a double angle and would’ve made the stair steps farther apart,” Braxton said. “Also, I would make it to the outside of the box metal siding because ____________” 

Through trial and error, Wyatt and Braxton worked through each process step and found that the real work came from the little details. 

“Sometimes, we would come up with an idea that just didn’t work,” Wyatt said. “The challenges were figuring out how everything would work together because when you stand back, it seems easy to build, but there are so many fine details that take forever.” 

Seniors Amy Hendricks and Bella Perez entered the furniture category for ag mechanics with a domino table, which earned Grand Champion. After struggling to narrow their ideas, Amy’s boyfriend suggested the suggestion, and the girls loved it. 

“The process of building the table was super fun,” Amy said. “We spent a lot of time together planning and gathering supplies, and  then we spent a little over a week actually building the table.”

 Amy and Bella found that the work starts before the cutting and hammering. 

“One of the big challenges we had was with the epoxy we used,” Amy said. “We didn’t do enough research at the beginning on the different kinds of epoxy and made a few mistakes, causing the project to take longer than expected.”

Along with the research required for a project like this, the planning stages are just as crucial to staying on track and following a timeline.

“I think we should have given ourselves more time to complete the work,” Amy said. “We had to rush a little bit at the end, which became stressful, but overall, it was a great experience.”

As a first-year floral design student, sophomore Sofia Ramirez created an ornamental horticulture project that earned Reserve Grand Champion. With floral design as a new endeavor, Sofia discovered that she was her own worst enemy when it came to trusting herself and the process. 

“My main challenge during the project was reminding myself that it actually looked good,” Sofia said. “I kept stressing myself out thinking it didn’t look right, but in the end it was all okay.”

With two years remaining in BCYLS eligibility, Sofia discovered one of the primary keys to success: confidence and believing in oneself.

“I wouldn’t change anything about my project or process,” Sofia said. “If anything, I would just change my mindset.”

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Lea Cammack
Lea Cammack, Staff Writer
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