- Associated Press - Wednesday, August 13, 2014

SPRINGFIELD, Ill. (AP) - A 12-year-old Morris girl needs a bigger piggy bank.

Shaelye (SHAY’-lee) Varner showed the grand champion steer at the Illinois State Fair, then sold it at auction for a whopping $100,000 - shattering last year’s fair record of $62,000.

AT&T;, Monsanto and DeKalb Asgrow combined to bid for Varner’s crossbred steer.

Fair officials say $100,000 would have bought almost every animal in the sale of champions just four years ago. This year, the auction netted more than $260,000 for the kids who raised the animals, as well as the 4-H and Future Farmers of America programs, which each receive 10 percent of the proceeds.

Shaelye says she’s been showing since she was 5 years old. She plans to save her money and use it for a future career in livestock.


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