Fun at the Montour Delong Fair, Danville PA

Debbie Schwab Knelly’s family had a great experience at their community fair this past week.
Griffin and his BFL, Wicket, took Champion Ewe for the “all other wool breed” division of breeding sheep in a class of 10 ewes, most of which were BFLs.Griffin
And sister, Machaella, won Junior Showman! Her ewe, Lacey, was a bit of a brat but she handled it, kept a smile on and showed her sheep. The judge recognized the effort and rewarded her for it. Mich

All American Junior Sheep Show placings

Shown at the All American Junior Sheep Show, held in west Springfield, MA this year are Iris LaRochelle and Ellora Chapin. Iris placed 5th with Stillmeadow 103 Quince and Ellora placed 4th with Stillmeadow 91 Maybelline. Both lambs were in the Feb natural colored ewe lamb class. Ellora is the granddaughter of long time BLU member, Joan Chapin of Stillmeadow BFLs. Chapin

Are you missing from our membership directory?

Just a quick reminder to our membership… if you see that you are “missing” from our online Membership Directory, please renew today and we’ll add you back in!

Your membership is vital to BLU, and your visibility here helps people locate BFL breeders in their area… so it means business for you!

Plus, you need to be a member in order to vote in or run for office in our upcoming election.

At the Wisconsin Sheep & Wool Festival, youth rule!

From Jill Johnson, Boyd, WI
My boys, Blake(age 11) and Tyler(age 9), have 15 BFLs.   BLU members LeeAnne & Weldon Richert (Cable, WI)  have helped them get started with a nice little flock. The boys make management decisions for their flock with a little help from us. They are also involved with the care and management of our 50+ ewe Cormo flock. They also enjoy helping with the marketing of our wool and help with educational presentations on sheep and wool.

Blake and Tyler had an exciting weekend during the Wisconsin Sheep and Wool Festival. Blake won champion youth fleece, champion natural colored fleece, and ultimately reserve supreme champion fleece with a natural colored Bluefaced Leicester fleece.
The fleece was the lamb fleece of RiverWinds 255 Muffy.

Blake and Tyler also exhibited the champion Natural colored ewe, RiverWinds 254 Miffy,(twin to Muffy) at the Great Lakes BFL show at WSWF. They also exhibited the reserve champion colored BFL ram and reserve champion white BFL ewe.

Tyler and his reserve champion white BFL ewe

To continue with my motherly bragging they also placed 1st and 3rd in the beginner division of the Youth sweepstakes held at the festival. The sweepstakes is a points competition based on all the youth activies at the festival. In all they had a good weekend.


Blake and his champion natural colored BFL ewe

Blake has shown his BFLs at our county fair for 3 years introducing something other than a Suffolk. Both boys have shown at WSWF for the last 3 years in the Great Lakes BFL show and the Junior show. Last year Blake actually showed the reserve supreme champion wool breed of the junior show with his white BFL yearling. Tyler has also had success in fleece competitions last year he exhibited the reserve champion white fleece at
Shepherd’s Harvest (Minnesota’s main sheep and wool festival)in a competition with more than 100 fleeces and then sold that fleece for $100 at silent auction.

Comments from fleece Judge Letty Klein: Out of about 130 fleece entries, there was one BFL, a natural colored one. It was stunning! I placed it 1st in the NC long wool class, then Champion NC
Division. Well, I then made the fleece Reserve Supreme over all the fleeces.

Photos by LeeAnne Richert

New Youth BFL Breeder

by Kathleen Davidson

In January Maggie Hoffman 14, became a new BFL breeder, buying a bred ewe and a yearling ewe from Potosi Farm. Maggie had no experience with sheep but was confident with her decision to become a shepherd. When it was time for her ewe to lamb, Maggie was excited and ready for lambs. On the due date she called to tell me that her ewe had “egg yolk like fluid coming out”. What an observation for a novice!

With phone directions, Maggie put her hand right in the ewe, straightened a leg and pulled out her first lamb. I’ve had adults freak and tell me “I can’t” when I give them the same directions. Maggie also pulled a second lamb with the same calm confidence. With two beautiful black lambs to care for, we happily hung up and she sent me pictures of her lambs a few days later.

One month later, Maggie’s mom called with the sad news that their barn had burned and all of Maggie’s sheep and rabbits were gone. Maggie was devastated and broken-hearted. This has got to be the most horrible thing that can happen to a shepherd.

There’s a happy ending to this story though. By Easter, Maggie had a new flock and as you can see in the picture she is very happy to have a new lamb and ewe. Although these sheep will never replace the lambs she delivered Maggie is a shepherd again and this lamb and yearling are lucky to have Maggie as their shepherd. Welcome to BFL sheep, Maggie!

2011 Membership Drive Kickoff!

Don’t forget to renew your membership with BLU!
$15 Active
$5 Youth
$10 Associate

Click on the membership “How to Join” button above for more information. We encourage you to use our PayPal feature.

Don’t risk missing even one minute of the benefits of membership. The deadline to renew without interruption of your membership is March 1st.

Please remember to make the check out to BLU, and to mail it directly to our Treasurer, as directed on the membership form.

Members… Please see our updated MEMBERSHIP DIRECTORY on the website

The Membership Directory on the website has been under further development. It now shows membership information such as:

  • Your membership status (Full (Active), Junior, or Associate).
  • Year you joined BLU and/or date you renewed.
  • Your membership expiration date and/or a reminder to RENEW.
  • Your “flock number” (or ASR number, or BLU number), if known (this will assist you and ASR).
  • Your Prefix, if known (this will assist you and ASR).

Please review your information and contact me with any changes, updates, or missing information for this directory. Contact Kris Barndt.

President’s notes on the BLU board January 19 meeting

The BLU board has a year under its belt, having met a total of seven times during 2010. Many things have been accomplished, and 2011 opens with lots of new ideas to work on. The association is on firm footing financially, showing an increase in its treasury during 2010. During 2010, a set of bylaws were formally adopted by the board, and committees were formed to oversee projects. The third national show was held in Oregon during the Black Sheep Gathering, and was well attended. A quarterly newsletter, BLUPrint, was established, with several members contributing to articles throughout the year. The website was updated and revamped, and will continue to be improved upon. Two banners were designed and made available to the membership to use at their local events to promote BFLs. A formal procedure for proposals for the 2012 national show was adopted.

A new year brings new opportunities. The board has already met for its opening meeting in January, reviewing the financial situation and budgeting for 2011. It went over proposals for the 2012 National Show venue, and made its selection. The show will be held in Wooster, Ohio during the Great Lakes Fiber Show. Banner Sales holds a show and sale during this festival, and BFL breeders will have the opportunity to enter their sheep in the Banner sale if they so choose. The board kicked off the 2011 membership drive. Current members will be receiving a postcard in the mail soon, reminding all that 2011 dues need to be paid before the March 1st deadline. Don’t be late and risk missing out on the benefits that membership in BLU provides!

BLU Junior Members Excel!

BLU youth Fraley
Maddie Fraley, Lisa Rodenfels, and Alex Fraley at the Ohio Stark Co. Fair, September 2010.

Originally published in the newsletter BLU Print; October 2010 issue, Vol. 1, No. 3

The Fraley girls of Running Briar Farm did well at the Ohio Stark County fair in September. They entered Bluefaced Leicesters in both the youth 4-H and open classes. Shown in the photo are Maddie (left with Babydoll), BLU president Lisa Rodenfels (center), and Alex (right with Vogue) with their 2nd and 3rd place open AOB yearling ewes.  They went on to win 1st place pair of ewes in the AOB class.