all 2018 nominating breeders are invited

Best of the Buckeye Breeder Reception

August 25 - 3:00 p.m. 
Leeds Farm - 8738 Marysville Road, Ostrander, Ohio 43061

Over $10,000 worth of prizes will be presented to nominating breeders who are in attendance. Breeders will receive one entry into the prize drawing for each nomination from the Ohio Beef Expo and Ohio State Fair.

Register Here

Best of the Buckeye

Ohio's Premier Bred, Born & Raised Registered Steer & Heifer Youth Event

Learn more about the 2018 Best of the Buckeye Program. 


  • The Best of the Buckeye program will recognize the top placing Ohio calves in each breed division at the Ohio Beef Expo and the Ohio State Fair along with the exhibitors and breeders.
  • Best of the Buckeye calves may be exhibited at both the Ohio Beef Expo and the Ohio State Fair. Best of the Buckeye premiums are paid at each show.
  • Note: Best of the Buckeye is a separate program from the OCA BEST Program, however BEST participants are encouraged to nominate qualifying cattle for Best of the Buckeye.


To promote the exhibition of Ohio bred & born and registered steers and heifers. To recognize the top Ohio bred, born & raised steers and heifers and the breeders in each breed division at the Ohio Beef Expo and the Ohio State Fair.

Program Goals

  • Provide Ohio seedstock breeders with an enhanced marketing opportunity for Ohio bred & born and registered steers and heifers
  • Create a source of more moderately priced show steers and heifers by providing a program with awards and prestige
  • Attract new participants interested in showing at the Ohio Beef Expo and/or the Ohio State Fair

Who is eligible?

For cattle to be eligible for the Best of the Buckeye program, they must be registered and bred by an Ohio cattleman and born in state. ET calves and calves out of purchased bred cows are eligible if they were born in Ohio and list an Ohio cattleman as the breeder.

Best of the Buckeye Exhibitor FAQs


Ohio breeders are encouraged to use the program's logo in their sale advertisements and promotions. Click here to download the Best of the Buckeye logo.

Nomination Process

To participate in Best of the Buckeye, breeders must complete a nomination form (each form can be used to nominate up to five animals from the same breeder) and sign an affidavit verifying Best of the Buckeye eligibility. The breeder or exhibitor may submit the nomination forms and fee for the Best of the Buckeye nominations. Cattle that are nominated prior to the Ohio Beef Expo by March 1 and prior to the Ohio State Fair by June 20 will incur a $25 per head nomination fee per show. Cattle may be nominated for both shows by March 1 for a rate of $40. Breeders will have the opportunity to nominate cattle through check-in at the Ohio Beef Expo and at the Ohio State Fair at an increased late nomination fee of $75 per head. Completed early entry nomination forms may be returned to the OCA office by March 1 for Ohio Beef Expo Best of the Buckeye entries or by June 20 for Ohio State Fair Best of the Buckeye nominations. Animals nominated for Best of the Buckeye will also need to be entered in the Ohio Beef Expo and Ohio State Fair junior shows. Cattle that are eligible to show for more than one year must pay a new Best of the Buckeye nomination each calendar year.


The Ohio Beef Expo and Ohio State Fair will pick the top 3 heifers and steers in each breed division for the Best of the Buckeye program with sponsorships adding additional premiums to the top 3 Best of the Buckeye cattle in each division, Champion-$300, Reserve-$200 and 3rd-$100. Breed Association premiums will be added to the minimum Best of the Buckeye payouts with the understanding that the top placing Best of the Buckeye animal in each division will be capped at a premium payout total of $1,500 from the Best of the Buckeye payouts (not including host show premiums). Individuals may also donate to the Best of the Buckeye program through their Ohio breed association. Best of the Buckeye placings will coincide with the show’s class placings. The top 3 animals from each class will come back immediately following the breed’s final drive to show for the Best of the Buckeye final drive.


The Best of the Buckeye program will offer scholarship opportunities for Best of the Buckeye participants to offset the cost of purchasing, raising and exhibiting a Best of the Buckeye nominated calf. Scholarships will be awarded to less-experienced participants, ages 8-21, with consideration given to the applicant’s financial need. Scholarship applications will be due on January 15 and scholarship recipients will be notified in February. Recipients will receive their scholarship after the first Best of the Buckeye show in which they exhibit cattle that were nominated in the program.

The program will also offer academic scholarships to youth pursuing a post-high school degree that will be based on academics and extracurricular activities. Eligible Best of the Buckeye participants are high school juniors through 21 years of age as of January 1. Academic scholarships will be awarded to participants pursuing an Ag related degree and may be awarded to applicants who are entering a non-Ag related field of study (based on the number of applications). All scholarship applicants will also be required to submit an essay along with their scholarship application. The scholarship essay topic will be predetermined and posted on the OCA website. The scholarship deadline will be June 15 and scholarships will be presented at the Ohio State Fair.

Thank you, 2018 Sponsoring Partners!

heifer division

steer division

scholarship division

breeder recognition