Show results from the Maryland Sheep & Wool festival BFL classes

Champion Ram – Margaret VanCamp – Pitchfork Ranch
Champion Ewe – Ellora Chapin
Res CH Ewe – VanCamp
Flock – VanCamp
Best Fleece – Ellora Chapin

Also showing were Meredith Myers-Null and Cathie Shiff. These are all white BFLs; the natural colored BFLs are shown in the natural colored longwool classes.

Here is Ellora – a BLU Junior member – with her Premier Exhibitor plaque. Congratulations!

2017 YCP yearling ewe recipient Charles O’Boyle

Introducing the 2017 Youth Conservation Program Recipient of the Bluefaced Leicester Yearling ewe, donated this year by BLU member Meredith Myers-Null of Maryland.

I am Charlie O’Boyle from Cumberland, MD. I am a 4-Her in the Mountain and Valley 4-H livestock club in Allegany county.
Sheep have always been a part of my life as well as my family as it was a smaller livestock that my brother and I could handle easier when we were younger. My family helps me with my projects and in keeping them updated and in helping me work with my sheep and other animals. One of the most peaceful places I have found is the barn though. When I am not in school that is where I am usually found. I love being in the barn working with the sheep and other animals with my golden retriever. I make sure that they are worked with, taken car of and in preparing them for shows and in showing the animals.
I am hoping that by participating in the Youth Conservationist Program on my own project it will allow me to help preserve our past and the farming way of life and to share it with others. I have helped my brother with his YCP project this past year through helping to care for his sheep as well as in telling others about the importance of sheep in our lives.
(Charlie’s brother William was the YCP recipient of the BFL yearling ewe in 2016)

The Working Herding Dog demonstration at the Maryland Sheep & Wool Festival.


by Nancy Starkey, BLU member
I have been announcing the demos for over 20 years and have been performing in the demos for the past seven or eight years. We have used Bluefaced Leicester sheep from my flock in the demos for several years. The natural beauty and athleticism of the BFL makes for an eye-catching demonstration.

The dogs used in the demonstrations are Working Border Collies. We showcase the natural talent and ability of the dogs and show how they can be an asset to the livestock producer. We also have the dogs work in partnership with the handlers to maneuver the sheep through the various obstacles around the arena.

Throughout the demo, we stress that livestock should always be handled in a calm, quiet manner by the dogs. Our goal is for the demonstrations to be enjoyable as well as informative for the crowds.

Herding Demo at MS&W festival

Rye driving the ewes (1)
by Nancy Starkey
I have been announcing the demos for over 20 years and have been performing in the demos for the past six or seven years. We have used Bluefaced Leicester sheep from my flock in the demos for several years, and they were especially appropriate this year because of the Bluefaced Leicester National Show.
Kep and ewes at festival (1)
The dogs used in the demonstrations are Working Border Collies. We showcase the natural talent and ability of the dogs and show how they can be an asset to the livestock producer. We also have the dogs work in partnership with the handlers to maneuver the sheep through the various obstacles around the arena.
Rye in Demos by Garrett (2)Photo by Garrett Ramsay
Throughout the demo, we stress that livestock should always be handled in a calm, quiet manner by the dogs. Our goal is for the demonstrations to be enjoyable as well as informative for the crowds.Aggie and sheep2 (2)

Updated information on the BFL National Show

The 6th Bluefaced Leceister National Show will be held during the Maryland Sheep & Wool Festival on May 7 & 8, 2016. The sheep show will be on Saturday, May 7th. There will be separate classes for white and natural colored, with special awards given. A list of these classes can be found under the About tab, National Show information above.

There will be special awards for the Champion BFL Fleece and Champion BFL Skein

Plans for special fiber demonstrations are also being made.

The banquet will be at the Timbuktu Restaurant, 1726 Dorsey Rd, Hanover, MD. They have a great menu, and I’m told “anything crab” is excellent!

The show committee has reserved 10 rooms with the Courtyard Columbia Hotel for the use of members attending the show events. http://www.marriott.com/hotels/travel/bwicl-courtyard-columbia/ These rooms are $89 and will be held until April 15th, so please get your reservations in asap. PLEASE FOLLOW THE INSTRUCTIONS BELOW TO BE SURE TO GET THE REDUCED RATE!

Please have the guests in your group directly call Marriott Reservations at 1 (800) 321-2211 or (410) 290-0002 on or before Friday, April 15, 2016, (the “Cut Off Date”) to make their sleeping room reservations. Please advise guests to identify themselves as part of the BFLS Show Room Block May2016 group staying at the Courtyard Columbia, located at 8910 Stanford Boulevard, Columbia, MD 21045-5805.

BFL fleeces shown at Maryland Sheep & Wool Festival

Submitted by Margie Smith, BLU member
2014first FBL
1st place BFL fleece in 2014 MS&W fleece show
The fleeces shown, are from Marlindale Farm in New Oxford, PA. Margie
and Lynn Smith have been running Marlindale Farm since 1990 having moved
from Emmitsburg, MD to New Oxford in 2004. With support from BFL
breeders (giving us our foundation stock for BFL sheep) as well as our
sheep shearer, Emily Chamelin, and that of fellow Maryland Sheep
Breeders’ members, we started placing rather well in the Fleece Show at
Maryland Sheep and Wool Festival in 2011. We’ve had the 1st place BFL
title for the past 3 years. We mostly have purebred BFL now, but have
crossbred BFL x BL with stunning results.
2ndplaceBFL GG
The 2nd place fleece in 2015. Marlindale also had the 1st place fleece
Our fleeces sell from $45/ lb to $95/lb. We keep the sheep covered with Rocky Payne’s sheep sheets
which has kept the fleeces wonderfully clean.
MargieEwe
A couple of us, in
conjunction with Rocky are try to develop a sheet sheet with a
“turtleneck” to preserve and keep clean the lower neck and shoulders. We
average about 1.5 pounds of “waste” from that area, which is just too
good to lose each year. Ours is a learning experience that is taking us
quite a few tries to get right!!

Stillmeadow Cottage has 1st place ewe lamb and best fleeced BFL at Maryland Sheep & Wool Festival

From Joan Chapin, Milton, NH
I sent my two ewe lambs to Maryland this year w/ my son and daughter-in-law as they were going down from New Hampshire with two Romney groups (black and white). This was the first time that I had lambs early enough and good enough (I thought) to show there.

One ewe lamb was out of a natural colored ewe I’d purchased at Rhinebeck in 2012 from Margaret Van Camp (Pitchfork breeding), the other was out of an older natural colored ewe of my own (generations of Ward). Both ewe lambs were white, and sired by my ram from Robina Koenig (in 2011, Carry House & Koenig).
I’m sending you the only picture I have of the Koenig/Pitchfork ewe lamb who was first in her class and was awarded Best Fleece in the Bluefaced show. My other ewe lamb was second in the class.
first place Maryland (1)
Can you believe that I was home in NH while my sheep were doing so well in Maryland?

Have to thank the team of Dr. Wes and Ms. Hilary Chapin for presenting these lambs at their best – and the breeders whose sheep gave me a great match in genetics. What a thrill! And, if you’ll notice, my granddaughter, Ellora, was assisting in the photo shoot. Ellie now has three of her very own Bluefaced Leicesters.

My Day with the YCP

rsz_greystone_and_brenda_and_maggie (1)Maggie, donor Brenda Lelli of Beechtree Farm, and Greystone

By Maggie Hoffman
Hi, my name is Maggie Hoffman and this year I won a Bluefaced Leicester yearling ram through the Youth Conservation Program. The Youth Conservation Program’s mission is to encourage the youth to raise and show heritage breeds of sheep such as the Bluefaced Leicester. A heritage sheep is a breed of sheep that has low numbers in the United States and may even face extinction. Every year to encourage youth breeders to raise these heritage breeds of sheep the Youth Conservation Program gives away several sheep to inspiring shepherds. These sheep are donated by farms all across America that raise heritage breeds of sheep.
To win one of these sheep I had to enter and essay contest. I had to write a little bit about me and my experience with animals than I had to answer the question: ‘Why would I like to raise a heritage breed of sheep?’ You then can request what kind of sheep you would like to recieve and I choose Bluefaced Lecesters because that is the breed that I raise.
I was so excited when the Youth Conservation Program called me and told me I was in the top 15 contestants to recieve a sheep. I would be traveling to the Maryland Sheep and Wool Festible to pick up my new sheep. Usually the Youth Conservation Program gives away yearling ewes, but because I only had ewes they talked to the breeder that was donating the ewe decided that it would best to donate a Bluefaced yearling ram this year. The ram, Beechtree’s Greystone, was donated by Brenda and Mark Lelli from Beechtree farm in Michigan.
The Maryland Sheep and Wool Festival was a lot of fun. I got to meet Greystone and Brenda and Mark from Beechtree Farms. After the presentation and I recieved my ram I got to participate in The Parade of Breeds. Greystone is such a beautiful ram and he behaved really well throughout the whole ordeal.
Now that I’ve recieved my ram I have to fill several obligations throughout the next year. Once I got home from the festival I sent Mark and Brenda Lelli a thankyou note and I will keep them updated on what Greystone is up to. For Christmas I will use Greystone’s wool to make a Christmas present for Greystone’s breeders. I will also be keeping two scrapbooks on all the fun things that Greystone and I are doing. One of the scrapbooks goes to the donater while I get to keep the other after it is shown at theMaryland Sheep and Wool Festival next year. This fall I will also be breeding him to three regitared Bluefaced ewes and hopefully be showing their lambs this coming year at the Maryland Sheep and Wool Festible.
I had a lot of fun writing my essay and receiving my new ram. I encourage any young shepherd to give it a try.