2021-2022 OCA BEST Show Rules

1.  Exhibitor Eligibility
Only Ohio residents who are eight years old as of January 1, 2022 but are not older than 21 years of age as of January 1, 2022, are eligible to accumulate OCA BEST points. Anyone who has reached 22 years of age before 1/1/22 is ineligible. Out-of-state juniors who exhibit Buckeye Breeder Series (BBS) cattle are also eligible to participate in BEST and accumulate points, providing they meet all other eligibility requirements, including age, membership and Beef Quality Assurance (BQA) status. Out-of-state juniors are eligible to accumulate OCA BEST points on their BBS cattle only, not showmanship. To be eligible for the BEST program participants and their immediate family members must be in good financial standing with OCA. Good financial standing includes but is not limited to prior year’s unpaid accounts with OCA or any BEST sanctioned show or unpaid accounts resulting from a BEST rule violation. All prior unpaid accounts must be paid in full prior to making BEST nominations. BEST participants must continue to be in good financial standing with OCA and each BEST sanctioned show throughout the program year to be eligible to receive BEST awards and to be listed in the BEST final points. The BEST Committee reserves the right to place BEST participants on a cash only basis at all BEST sanctioned shows based upon past violations of this rule.


2. BEST Nomination Fee, BBS Nomination Fee & Show Entry Fees – (*See table appendix)
 To receive BEST points, OCA BEST participants must pay a $60.00 per head nomination fee.* This is a one-time nomination fee for the show season. To participate in BEST, exhibitors must complete their BEST nominations through the website best.ohiocattle.org. BEST nominations may be paid with a credit card at the time the online nomination is made. Nominations may also be made at any BEST sanctioned shows throughout the season. OCA BEST exhibitors must nominate their animals for the OCA BEST program prior to the start of the first show from which they wish to receive points. When show entries close, all BEST nominations for that particular show close as well. Show entries are paid through the website best.ohiocattle.org. Entries open the Monday prior to each BEST sanctioned show. Show entry fees will be discounted $5 per entry for BEST participants at each BEST sanctioned show. Show entry fees are non-refundable if the BEST committee or show disqualifies the animal or exhibitor.
 * There is an additional $25.00 one-time per head nomination fee for Buckeye Breeder Series (BBS) animals to be eligible to participate in BEST and accumulate BEST points. The BBS $25.00 nomination must be paid at the participant’s first show. The Ohio breeder of the BBS animal has the first responsibility to pay the $25.00 BBS nomination fee for any animals they have sold to juniors at the online form available by clicking here or the BEST exhibitor may pay the $25.00 BBS nomination, if it has not already been paid by the breeder, in addition to the $60.00 per head one-time BEST nomination fee, when they complete their online BEST nomination. 


3. OCA Membership
 To exhibit at a BEST sanctioned show, the exhibitor and/or their family must be current members of OCA. This rule pertains to all exhibitors both in-state and out-of-state residents, BEST and non-BEST participants. The OCA membership for all out-of-state exhibitors must be paid at their first BEST show. The OCA membership must be in the name of the exhibitor’s immediate family. Immediate family is defined as a membership in the parents’ name, or the membership has the same address of record as the exhibitor. For new OCA BEST participants, the OCA membership must be paid at the time the BEST nomination is made. For renewing OCA members, all BEST participants will be required to have a current year OCA membership paid in full by January 1, 2022 to remain in the program and to continue earning BEST points, and to be listed in the final point standings and be eligible for awards. A one-time annual $75.00 OCA family membership will be added to the first show entry fee for all show exhibitors when they enter a BEST sanctioned show through the online entry system. If more than one junior within a family exhibits at a BEST sanctioned show, only one OCA membership is required.  


4. Show Your Own Animal for BEST Points To receive BEST points, animals must be shown by their owner. An exception is made if the BEST participant owns two or more animals that are in the same class or has two different animals that are both showing simultaneously in adjacent rings. In these two scenarios another junior may exhibit the second animal and the participant would still receive BEST points for both animals. When the class conflict is over and for championship drives, the actual BEST participant must return to showing their own animal to retain the points earned. It is the BEST participant’s responsibility to inform the OCA staff person or BEST Committee member in charge of the class conflict as it happens, not after the show. BEST participants that are physically unable to show their animal may ask another BEST participant or have a family member who meets the age requirements for the BEST program to show their animal, but the unable BEST participant must be present at the show to earn OCA BEST points. If the BEST participant becomes ill after the cattle have arrived at a show and been checked-in, another BEST participant or family member who meets the age requirements for the BEST program, may show their animal(s). The BEST participant must seek prior approval from the BEST Committee and the BEST participant must have been at the show, hotel and/or left home with the cattle. Should a BEST participant become ill and stay home prior to the cattle leaving for a show, then no BEST points will be awarded to the participant’s cattle. Family emergencies are at the BEST Committee’s discretion, but the participant must seek prior approval for BEST points to count. The BEST Committee reserves the right to use discretion in administering this rule regarding situations not already covered. All decisions by the BEST Committee on points associated with showing your own animal shall be final.


5. Sanctioned Show Requirements
A sanctioned show must be open to all OCA BEST exhibitors but is not limited to them. A sanctioned show may be open to the world, but only OCA BEST participants will accumulate points. Show schedules regarding double rings, heifers, steers and showmanship will be up to the discretion of each BEST show. All BEST exhibitors will receive a $5 per entry discount on their fees at each BEST show.


6. Cattle Age Requirements Steers & Market Heifers born on or after January 1, of 2021. Heifers born on or after September 1, 2020. 


7. Breed Class Qualifications

BEST show participants may provide breed registrations electronically at the time of check in. Although electronic papers are permitted, exhibitors are encouraged to have registration papers in hand at time of check in. All registrations meeting their breed association’s national junior show eligibility requirements will be accepted. No copies will be accepted. The animal’s registration must be in the name of the junior exhibitor who is exhibiting the animal. For BEST points, no family farm names will be permitted. At the first two (2) BEST sanctioned shows; AGR Holiday Classic and the Scarlet & Gray Midwest Showdown, BEST participants, who have not received their completed registrations, may still nominate their animals as a declared breed. (i.e. – if you have a Hereford steer and declare his breed at the AGR Holiday Classic, either a completed registration paper or electronic registration must be given to BEST officials at Scarlet & Gray Midwest Showdown) Proof of registration MUST be provided at the BEST sanctioned show immediately following the show where the animal’s breed was declared whether or not you exhibit cattle at the show. Failure to do so will result in the animal being dropped from the BEST point standings; additionally, any showmanship points garnered with the animal will be forfeited. Once proof of registration is provided on animals dropped from the program, the animal may be re-nominated for the BEST program and start collecting points; however, no points accumulated prior to providing proof of registration will transfer. The BEST committee reserves the right to evaluate all breed steers and heifers for breed standards. 

Cattle without a registration and legible tattoos that correspond to the registration will be considered crossbred. Tattoos will only be checked one time at a show. If the animal has illegible tattoos they will be placed in the crossbred division. The animal will not be permitted to leave the chute and come back. Cattle may only show one time within a show. Dual registered cattle may show only in one breed at one show. The exception to this rule is heifers that are nominated in the BEST program and show in BEST sanctioned shows as both a breeding heifer and a market heifer, providing the exhibitor has paid to dual nominate and enter the heifer in both of the shows. 

Breed heifers must be shown by age and crossbred heifers by shoulder height or weight. Steers and Market Heifers must be shown according to breed and shoulder height or weight. 

The following breed classes will be offered (unless a breed specific show) based on breed minimum percentages as listed: **Note-all high and low percentages must show in their appropriate division.


The High % and Low % All Other Breeds (AOB) divisions offered are for registered heifers that do not have their individual       breed offered as a division. Registered heifers and steers that do not have their own breed division offered will show in their appropriate AOB division, providing they meet their breed’s minimum percentage to be eligible to show at their respective breed’s national junior shows. ALL AOB steers will show in one division and will not be split into a High % and Low % AOB division. Registered cattle that do NOT meet the breed percentage requirement for their respective breed’s national junior eligibility requirement will show in the Crossbred division, not as an AOB. The High % AOB division will combine the breeds that are eligible, for example: Gelbvieh, Limousin, Miniature Herefords, etc. The Low % AOB division will combine the breeds that are eligible, for example: Low percentage Chianina, Low percentage Simmental, Balancer, LimFlex, etc. Also, ChiAngus heifers and MaineAngus heifers with upgraded papers will be eligible for the High % AOB division.


It will be up to the BEST Committee’s discretion to determine which breeds remain on the list of breed classes for the 2022-23 season. The Committee will consider past breed participation numbers when determining if a breed will remain on the list of breed classes. There will be a one-year probation for breeds that want to be added to the list for future years. These exhibitors will show for class money only during the probation year. Division premiums are based on the show’s discretion if the High % AOB or Low % AOB divisions have less than 5 head present at a show during the 2021-22 BEST sanctioned show season. At the conclusion of the year the BEST Committee will make a determination if the breed will be continued the next year. Among the BEST Committee’s considerations will be the number of animals exhibited and the number of exhibitors of the breed. Breeders interested in being granted the one-year probation must contact the OCA office by May 1 of the preceding year, i.e. May 1, 2022, for the 2022-23 show season.

BEST participants can only receive points on animals in one division, breed or crossbred. An animal cannot be shown as a crossbred one week and a breed animal the next week and maintain two sets of points. Their points will be counted for the division listed on their nomination form. Market Heifers that are also nominated as breeding heifers are exempted from this rule.   

Show schedules will be up to the discretion of each BEST show. However, the show order within the heifer show and the market animal show will be alphabetical starting with Angus and moving through all the breeds, followed by the All Other Breeds (AOB) and ending with Crossbreds. Market Heifers will be shown before crossbred steers.    

 In addition, it is mandatory that classes be provided for breed heifers, no matter the number of heifers of that breed entered in the show, according to the following age breaks: September-December 2020, January-February 2021, March- April 2021, and May 2021 and younger. This is the minimum number of classes to be provided. At larger shows additional classes may be added. Show order for heifers will be from youngest to oldest. Classes over 12 head will be broke evenly by the BEST show committee.  

ALL cattle (BEST & non-BEST) entering Ohio to show in a BEST sanctioned show MUST be tagged with an EID ear tag prior to arriving at their first BEST show. Cattle arriving at the show without an EID tag will incur a cost of $20 per tag to remain eligible to participate. The primary method of identification for ALL cattle exhibiting at a BEST sanctioned show will be their EID tag. This will also serve as the BEST program nominated cattle’s BEST number throughout the season. The secondary method of identification for registered steers and heifers will be their breed registration number and tattoo. ALL BEST show entries (crossbred and registered steers, heifers and market heifers) will be recorded by an EID ear tag at their first BEST sanctioned show.


8. Ownership
All animals nominated for the OCA BEST program must be owned at the time of nomination by the BEST exhibitor making the nomination and must remain in the ownership of the BEST exhibitor throughout the remainder of the BEST show season.


 9. No Farm Tags or Identifying Marks 
No identifying tags or marks on animals or exhibitors will be permitted at a BEST sanctioned show. This means no farm tags, special show harnesses or marked show shirts are allowed. The BEST committee or sanctioned show is not responsible to remove any tags. It will be the responsibility of the exhibitor to remove tags. Only BEST tags, county fair tags, EID tags and brands will be permitted. Note that if an EID tag has a farm name included, it is the exhibitor’s responsibility to make sure that the farm name is completely covered with non-transparent tape prior to entering the show ring. This rule applies to all animals and exhibitors entered in a BEST sanctioned show, including animals and exhibitors not in the BEST program. If an animal enters the ring with an unacceptable tag or identifying mark it will be disqualified from the show and will earn no points if they are a BEST animal.  


10. Showmanship Requirements - UPDATED FOR 2021-2022
A showmanship competition will be offered at every BEST show. It will be up to the discretion of each BEST show to determine if showmanship will be open to all exhibitors or only BEST participants. Any BEST sanctioned show that offers more than one showmanship competition will be required to have one competition that is for BEST participants only. Each BEST show must place the top ten in each age division for OCA BEST points. Showmanship class premiums are at the discretion of the sanctioned show. Age divisions will be: Beginner Division 10 and under, Junior Division 11-13, Intermediate Division 14-16, Senior Division 17-21, and the Novice Division for first or second year BEST participants ages 11-16. BEST participants ages 11-16 may choose to show in their specified age division with other BEST participants or they can participate in the Novice Division where only first or second year BEST participants will be competing. BEST participants will only be allowed to compete in one showmanship division. (i.e. - an 11-year-old BEST participant eligible for the Novice division may not compete in the Junior and Novice showmanship divisions at a BEST sanctioned show. They must choose one division.) The participant must compete in the heat that is listed in the final show program. If they fail to do so they will be disqualified from that particular show’s showmanship competition. The participant’s age on January 1, 2022 is used to determine age division. Anyone who has reached 22 years of age before 1/1/22 is ineligible to compete. The OCA BEST Committee reserves the right to request at any BEST show that showmanship participants must provide proof of age, which may include a driver’s license or other records, such as county 4-H records. Participants must show their own animal and that animal must be entered in the show. The animal that a BEST exhibitor is accumulating showmanship points on must be nominated for the BEST program. BEST participants may switch between animals they own for showmanship throughout the BEST season and still accumulate one points total. (Every BEST show will provide a showmanship competition and the showmanship show order will be youngest to oldest, with the Beginner division first, followed by Juniors, Novice, Intermediate and Seniors last.)   Out-of-state juniors exhibiting BBS cattle in the BEST program may show in every showmanship contest, except the Ohio Beef Expo, but will not be eligible to accumulate BEST points. They are not eligible to participate in the Novice division of BEST.

 New for 2021-2022To participate in showmanship all exhibitors must enter showmanship online by the end of the check-in on Friday evening.    The limit on the number of times an exhibitor's animal can get loose in showmanship is two. If it gets loose a third time, the exhibitor will be excused from competition. The class will be considered "final" when the judge begins speaking on the microphone. If an animal gets loose during the judge's comments it will not count against the exhibitor. Exhibitors must enter their class on time. Exhibitors arriving late to their assigned class will be ineligible to participate in the class and will be dismissed. When the first animal in the class walks, all late animals will be ineligible to enter the ring.  

Maximum Showmanship Point Accumulation Cap - The maximum number of showmanship points that will count toward the year-end point totals will be 7 shows. As an exhibitor you may participate in more than 7 showmanship competitions, however only your top 7 sets of points will count.   


11. Stockmanship Division
The OCA BEST program’s Stockmanship Division provides a pathway for youth to participate in the BEST program without showing an animal. It expands BEST participants’ knowledge of cattle and provides youth with an opportunity to showcase their abilities and talents outside of the show ring.   The Stockmanship division is comprised of beef industry-focused events and competitions that are in conjunction with BEST shows. This division of the BEST program is open to all Ohio youth regardless of whether they show cattle during the BEST show season. If an existing BEST participant would like to sign up for the Stockmanship division, they will do so under their BEST user profile at best.ohiocattle.org for no additional cost outside of existing cattle nominations. If age- eligible individuals would like to participate in the Stockmanship division but don’t have cattle enrolled in the 2021-2022 BEST program, they should create their username and profile at best.ohiocattle.org (if they don’t have an existing account either BEST or non-BEST) and elect to participate in the Stockmanship division. Non-cattle exhibiting BEST Stockmanship participants will need to have a current $75 family OCA membership and will pay a one-time participation fee of $60. Individuals may sign up for the Stockmanship program at any point throughout the season.

2021-2022 Stockmanship Contests – (This contest information is tentative and will be confirmed.)
 •     Prepared Speaking - held at the Scarlet & Gray Midwest Showdown - Saturday, January 8, 2022
 •     Salesmanship - held at the Weekend Spectacular - Saturday, January 22, 2022

 •     Cattlemen’s Challenge Competition (OCA’s version of a skill-a-thon) - held at the Clark County Cattle Battle - Saturday, January 29, 2022
 •     Fitting Contest - held at the DTS Cupid Classic - Friday, February 11,  2022

 •     Judging Contest - held at the Ohio Beef Expo - Friday, March 18, 2022   

 *Individual contests may prorate the number of awards based on the number of participants.   

Stockmanship contests will include their own registration and rules for each event and top-placing awards will be given at each competition. Please note that individual and team awards for qualifying events will be presented at the contest. Overall Stockmanship awards will be presented at the OCA BEST Awards Banquet on May 7, 2022. The top five individuals in the following divisions will be recognized: Beginner, Junior, Novice, Intermediate and Senior. Age breaks will follow that of the BEST program’s showmanship rules. To qualify for the end of year Stockmanship awards, the participant must have completed two contests, be a current OCA member by January 1, 2022, or at the time of Stockmanship sign-up and have completed their Beef Quality Assurance (BQA) certification. Stockmanship participants may complete their BQA at any session offered at a BEST sanctioned show, online at BQA.org or at YQCA.org.   

 A cumulative points scale for the Stockmanship division will be utilized for overall finishes and end of year point tabulation. Overall Stockmanship Point tabulation is as follows:

End of year ties will be broken based on the number of Stockmanship contests the participant completed. The participant finishing the greatest amount of contests will break the tie. Individual OCA BEST Stockmanship contest rules and full details are located at ohiocattle.org under the Events & Programs Tab.  

12.  Beef Quality Assurance

Beef Quality Assurance All BEST participants, including out-of-state BEST BBS participants, must have a current BQA certification when they sign-up for the program and/or complete a BQA certification to be in the BEST points standings following their first show, to be eligible to receive BEST awards and to be listed in the BEST final points. BQA certification is available through in-person trainings at BEST shows, bqa.org  or yqca.org. BEST participants that attended an in-person BQA training last BEST season (2020-2021) are certified for three years from the date they attended training.   

 In-person Training (These BQA certification dates are tentative and will be confirmed.)
 To complete the BQA requirement in-person, BEST participants need to attend one of four planned BQA sessions that will  be held at the AGR Holiday Classic, Scarlet & Gray Midwest Showdown, The Weekend Spectacular, and the Ohio Beef Expo. BEST participants are required to attend the entire BQA session, from beginning to end, to receive documentation of attendance. County level (Extension / 4-H / FFA) BQA programs do not transfer for the BEST QA requirement. Attendance at the BEST BQA  program during any BEST sanctioned show MAY meet the exhibitor’s county level QA requirement; however, exhibitors are responsible for checking with their county Extension educator to see if the QA offered by the BEST program will be accepted in their respective county. BEST participants MAY still be required to attend their own county level QA program to participate in their county fair.    **The BEST Program DOES NOT accept county level QA to qualify for the BEST program’s requirement.**    

Online Training
 To complete the BQA requirement online, BEST participants may complete the Youth for the Quality Care of Animals (YQCA) course (modules and test) for their appropriate age or the modules at BQA.org. The online options can be found  under https://www.ohiocattle.org/best/online-bqa.    YQCA.org (ONLY GOOD FOR ONE YEAR)
 If the participant chooses to use YQCA.org, there is a cost of $12 per online test and that payment can be made through YQCA upon registering for the online course. **Please note – 4-H participants that have a current 4HOnline / LearnGrow.com account may use that log-in information to register for the online YQCA course.** Online YQCA test results will be provided to OCA via YQCA administrators to credit BEST participants with fulfilling their BQA  requirement.    Please note that several national exhibitions and multi-specie shows are requiring QA to participate in their shows. Visit http://yqca.org for a complete list of shows and exhibitions that accept the YQCA program for their QA requirement.    BQA.org (GOOD FOR 3 YEARS and must still complete county QA requirement each year)
 
If the exhibitor chooses to complete the online training at BQA.org, they will create a username / password if they  haven’t already done so. 


13. OCA BEST Committee & Junior Rep Process
 The OCA BEST program is planned and governed by the OCA BEST Committee; however, all decisions are subject to approval by the OCA board of directors. The OCA President will appoint the committee chairman. There will also be several members solicited by OCA to serve on the governing committee. The chairman and those members solicited by OCA will constitute the BEST Executive Committee. The additional committee members will include five junior BEST participants. Junior BEST participants that are interested in serving on the committee will be required to complete a nomination application and go through an interview process. The junior committee representatives will be determined through an interview process prior to the 2022 BEST Awards Banquet. Junior committee applicants must be 16 years of age as of January 1, 2022, or older to apply. The final three committee members will be representatives of sanctioned shows determined at a meeting of the representatives of sanctioned shows. Representatives of all sanctioned shows will meet at least once a year to review the previous year’s program and make suggested changes for the coming year. No shows can be sanctioned for the following OCA BEST show season until after this meeting.


14.  Complaint or Protest Procedure
Anyone who seeks to file a complaint or protest regarding a perceived infraction of a BEST rule or sanctioned show rule must submit a fee of $150 to the BEST Committee. The BEST Committee will not release the name of the individual filing the protest. The fee will be refunded only if the protest is sustained by the BEST Committee. Formal protests pertaining to the BEST program or BEST sanctioned shows must be made during the current BEST show season and prior to the last BEST sanctioned show. The BEST Committee also reserves the right to review any potential rules violation on its own without a complaint first being filed. The BEST Committee, in its discretion, will determine the appropriate action, if any, and reserves the right to use any combination of tools and/or technology to conduct a thorough investigation pertaining to the protest.   

If the results of the investigation clearly do not support the complaint or protest, the matter will be dropped. If the results of the investigation appear to support the complaint or protest, the BEST Committee will provide the BEST participant who is the subject of the complaint or protest with at least 10 days’ notice of a meeting, where the participant and the participant’s family and any other involved parties will have an opportunity to present evidence or argument in their defense. The party making the protest also may attend and present evidence or argument in support of the protest. The BEST Committee will share the results of its investigation. Following the meeting, the BEST Committee in conjunction with the OCA Board of Directors will make a determination and inform the participant of its decision in writing.   

 Points challenges are not subject to the $150 fee, however, there will be a 5-day limit to challenge BEST points, once the office makes a posting or changes a points posting.


 15. Livestock Tampering & Misrepresentation Rules
The exhibitors and their animals, (BEST or non-BEST), their family members, and others acting on the behalf of the exhibitors, will follow Ohio’s Livestock Show Reform Law, Chapter 901 of the Ohio Revised Code, and all rules under Ohio’s Livestock Tampering Exhibition Rules, as set forth in Sections 901-19-1 through 901-19-21 and Section 901-19-33 of the Ohio Administrative Code. The BEST Committee reserves the right to test and/or ultrasound any animal at a BEST Show. The BEST Committee, at its sole discretion, may test and/or ultrasound winners, at random, or upon reasonable suspicion of possible violations of any of the Ohio Livestock Show Reform Law and its related rules or other OCA BEST Rules. By participating in a BEST sanctioned show, exhibitors (BEST and non-BEST) consent to BEST committee members, OCA staff and show management entering the tents, trailers, and other areas where animals may be housed at a BEST sanctioned show, prepared for the show, or transported to or from the show. At the time of testing, any market animal being tested (BEST or non-BEST) must be clear of any drug residue and be clear of any withdrawal periods. Any breeding heifer being tested (BEST or non-BEST) must be clear of any drug residue and/or withdrawal period on performance and show enhancing drugs. Market heifers that are also showing as breeding heifers that and fall into both categories must abide by the market animal residue and withdrawal parameter.

 A. Pumping of Cattle is Prohibited Ohio’s Livestock Tampering Exhibition Rules 901-19-13, an unacceptable practices mandatory rule, prohibits using a stomach tube or pump for any purpose other than relieving tympany or gas. If a stomach pump is used for medical purposes to relieve tympany or gas on the day of show, the animal will not be permitted to show that day. 

 B. Grooming Requirements 
Based upon Rule 901-19-33, Prohibited Grooming Practices, the following grooming practices are prohibited: a.) Using any substance to enhance or change the color of the livestock, including the livestock’s hide or hooves; b.) Adding any substance externally to build up, change or alter the shape or conformation of the livestock, including by way of example, but not limited to rope, false hair, graphite, hemp, and powders; c.) Pigmented grooming aides or materials. In addition, colored or pigmented substances, i.e. paint, are prohibited from use on steers and heifers at all OCA BEST sanctioned shows. Painting of the hooves is prohibited. Use of clear substances is permitted. The sponsor of the exhibition will enforce rule 901-19-33, Prohibited Grooming Practices. Any exhibitor and the exhibitor’s animal (BEST or non-BEST) at an OCA BEST sanctioned show that does not follow the rule will be disqualified and all premiums and awards will be forfeited. If the disqualified exhibitor has shown the exhibitor’s animals, all animals placing below them will not move up. OCA BEST members who do not follow Rule 901-19-33 will be disqualified as described above from that show only, and their points for that particular show will not count in the OCA BEST program.

 C. Penalties for Violation of Livestock Tampering & Misrepresentation Rules at OCA BEST Shows 
The OCA BEST Committee and Ohio Cattlemen’s Association Board of Directors may impose discipline, and/or the Ohio Department of Agriculture may take disciplinary action in accordance with O.R.C. 901.74. When determining penalties, OCA will consider, among other factors, the fact that the BEST program is sponsored by OCA for the development of youth, the desire and necessity of maintaining the integrity of the BEST program, the severity of the violation compared to industry standards, and how similar violations have been handled in the past. BEST Committee sanctions may include, but not be limited to, the following: the participant, family members (including but not limited to siblings who are BEST participants), or business partners (including but not limited to their children who are BEST participants) associated with the specific violation(s) lose points for a show, lose points for multiple shows, and/or be barred from current or future participation in the BEST program and other OCA events and programs. Persons found to have violated BEST rules by the BEST Committee have the right to appeal in writing within 30 days of the BEST Committee’s decision to a committee appointed by the President of the OCA Board of Directors. The Committee’s decision will be communicated in writing and will be final.   

BEST rule violators will be responsible for reimbursing legal fees incurred by the OCA before they are considered in good standing with OCA for the purposes of future event or program eligibility.   

 Any exhibitor and the exhibitor’s animal (BEST or non-BEST), their family members, and others acting on the behalf of the exhibitor, that violate mandatory Ohio Livestock Tampering Exhibition Rules 901-19-01 through 901-19-21 of the Ohio Administrative Code (including Rule 901-19-13 G pumping of cattle) or other OCA BEST rules not part of Ohio’s Livestock Tampering Exhibition Rules will cause the exhibitor and the exhibitor’s animals (BEST or non-BEST) to be subject to severe disciplinary action. The exhibitor and the exhibitor’s immediate family members (siblings with the same address), as defined in BEST program Exhibitor Rule 3, may also be subject to being barred from participating in an OCA BEST sanctioned show for a period of up to three years from the date of the violation. In addition, BEST exhibitors in violation of a rule and their animals will be immediately dismissed from the BEST program and lose all BEST points for showmanship and animals. The barred exhibitor and/or the exhibitor’s family may request a hearing for reinstatement with the OCA BEST Committee and the OCA Board of Directors at any time during the penalty period determined by the BEST Committee and OCA Board of Directors. The Committee and the Board of Directors reserve the right to adjust the penalty period based upon the findings of the Ohio Department of Agriculture. In the final months of any penalty period, the OCA Board of Directors, in its sole discretion, may review the facts and circumstances prior to reinstating barred exhibitors. If the Board of Directors, or the OCA executive director, has not notified the exhibitor of the status of reinstatement prior to the last day of the penalty period, the exhibitor will be deemed reinstated. 

 OCA reserves the right to publish names of all parties youth and/or adult (BEST and non-BEST) involved in a rule violation through official OCA member print publications and digital communication.

 D.  OCA Show Eligibility Resulting from Violations of Ohio’s Livestock Tampering Exhibition Rules at Other Shows     
Any individual and his or her immediate family or member of the individual’s household who has been found by the Ohio Department of Agriculture to be in violation of mandatory Ohio Livestock Tampering Exhibition Rules 901-19-01 through 901-19-21 of the Ohio Administrative Code and has been barred for future show participation (with any species) will be barred from exhibiting cattle in any OCA BEST sanctioned show. OCA will give all decisions of sponsors and other bodies holding fairs and shows full faith and credit and will observe and enforce such decisions coextensively at shows sponsored by the Ohio Cattlemen’s Association. In the final months of any penalty period, the OCA Board of Directors, in its sole discretion, may review the facts and circumstances prior to reinstating barred exhibitors. If the Board of Directors, or the OCA executive director, has not notified the exhibitor of the status of reinstatement prior to the last day of the penalty period, the exhibitor will be deemed reinstated.


16. Exhibitor Code of Conduct 
All BEST and non-BEST exhibitors, their family members and others acting on the behalf of the exhibitor must display good sportsmanship and act in a courteous manner at all BEST sanctioned shows. Unsportsmanlike conduct will be referred to the OCA BEST Committee for appropriate action, if the committee deems necessary. Unsportsmanlike conduct may include but is not limited to physical actions, threats, or outbursts of profanity. Committee action is not limited to the following, but may result in the exhibitor found in violation to lose points for a show, lose multiple show points, and/or be barred from current or future participation in the BEST program and BEST sanctioned shows. The decision of the BEST Committee regarding the unsportsmanlike conduct shall be final.


17. Points System for OCA BEST 
Point totals will be kept for each individual animal. There will be a 5-day limit to challenge BEST points, once the office makes a posting or changes a points posting.  Winners will be determined for both steers and heifers in each of the following categories: Angus, Charolais Heifer, Percentage Charolais Heifer, Charolais Steer, Chianina, Hereford, High Percentage Maine-Anjou Heifer, MaineTainer Heifer, Maine-Anjou Steer, Shorthorn and ShorthornPlus, Purebred Simmental Heifer, Percentage Simmental Heifer, High % and Low % All Other Breeds Heifer, All Other Breeds Steer, Market Heifer, and Crossbred.  If an OCA BEST nominated animal is sold during the show season, the points are not transferrable. Animals may be re-nominated under the new owner.  All OCA BEST shows will follow the same point system. Points will be based on the number of animals you beat in your class, with the exception of the champion and reserve champion animals. (For example, if there are 10 animals in your class the points for first place will be 10 points, second 9, third 8, fourth 7, fifth 6 and so on.) When an animal is named Grand Champion within their breed, they will be awarded points equivalent to the largest class within their breed, plus an additional 10 points. If the animal is named Reserve Champion within their breed, they will be awarded points equivalent to the largest class within their breed, plus an additional 5 points. Champion and Reserve Champion will not receive points for their individual class placings. (For example, if there are two Angus heifer classes, class 1 has 8 head and class 2 has 10 head. The class 1 winner is then named Grand Champion Angus Heifer, the points calculation would be as follows: 10+10= 20. If the Reserve Champion Angus Heifer was the class 1 second place the calculation would be as follows: 10+5= 15.) All top five crossbred steers will receive points, following the points received by the champion and the reserve, third place crossbred steer will receive 1 point less than the reserve champion, fourth place will receive 1 point less than third place and fifth place will receive 1 point less than fourth place. The following point system will be used for showmanship at OCA BEST Shows under 400 head: First 30, second 27, third 24, fourth 21, fifth 18, sixth 15, seventh 12, eighth 9, ninth 6 and tenth 3. For OCA BEST Shows with more than 400 head the following points system will be used for showmanship: First 40, second 36, third 32, fourth 28, fifth 24, sixth 20, seventh 16, eighth 12, ninth 8 and tenth 4.  The number of year-end awards that will be presented at the banquet will be based on the number of cattle in each division at the end of the BEST season. The awards will be figured according to each division (i.e.- if there are 5 Angus steers there will be a Champion and Reserve awarded; if there are 20 Angus heifers, there will be a Top 5 awarded). The shows will still only choose a Champion and Reserve Crossbred heifer at each BEST show. Breeds that have percentage divisions (Maine-Anjou, Charolais, Shorthorn & Simmental) will be tabulated separately by purebred and percentage animals and awarded accordingly.

 • Heifer, Steer or Market Heifer division totaling 1‐19 head: Champion & Reserve
 • Heifer, Steer or Market Heifer division totaling 20‐49 head: Top 5
• Heifer, Steer or Market Heifer division totaling 50‐99 head: Top 10
 • Heifer, Steer or Market Heifer division totaling 100+ head: Top 15

 Maximum Cattle Point Accumulation Cap -  The maximum number of shows that will count toward the year-end point totals will be 11 shows. As an exhibitor you may attend more than 10 shows, however only your top 11 sets of points will count.   

One Show Minimum to Receive Awards & be in the Final Points Standings - To be eligible to receive awards, including the trailer drawing, and be listed in the final points standings, you must attend a minimum of one BEST show during the show season. This includes bred-and-owned and Buckeye Breeders Series awards. 


18. Novice Division 
A Novice Division for inexperienced youth of BEST eligible age who are nominating a BEST animal for the first or second year will operate off a separate point total, similar to the bred-and-owned awards. Novice participants will be listed in the overall points total, in addition to the novice points. Awards will be presented to the top 10 heifers, top 10 market animals, and the top 10 showmen in the final Novice points standings. These awards will be presented at the BEST awards banquet. The BEST Committee reserves the right to expand the awards for the Novice division subject to the number of Novice nominations. If a BEST Novice participant wins (places in the top 10 Novice Market Animals, Novice Heifers or Novice Showmanship) in their first year in the Novice division, they must move into the regular BEST points competition the following year. A BEST Novice participant can continue to participate in the Novice division for a second year, providing they did not win one of the awards listed above. You may only participate in the Novice Division for a maximum of two years.


 19. Top Five Market Animals & Heifers 
Each BEST show will also pick the top 5 market animals (includes market heifers) and heifers. It is up to the individual show to determine how and if they receive additional awards. (Those animals eligible to compete for the top 5 heifers will include only breed champions and reserves and the crossbred champion and reserve. Those animals eligible to compete for the top 5 market animals will include breed champions and reserves, the top 5 crossbred steers, selected from only first and second place animals and the champion and reserve market heifer.) Only champions will initially enter the ring for the overall champion competition.


 20. Bred-and-Owned Animals  Awards will be presented to the top 5 bred-and owned heifers and top 5 bred-and-owned steers in the final points standings. Crossbreds and market heifers are not eligible. These awards will be presented at the BEST awards banquet. To be recognized the BEST junior exhibitor must be listed as the breeder on the animal’s registration paper. 


 21. Buckeye Breeders Series Points DivisionUpdated for 2021-2022
The Buckeye Breeders Series (BBS) BEST points division, formerly known as the Best of the Buckeye program, features cattle bred in Ohio and runs throughout the BEST show season. Only registered cattle that were bred, born, and raised by an Ohio     breeder are eligible. Crossbreds are not eligible to participate in the BBS. Beginning with the AGR Holiday Classic and continuing at every BEST show throughout the season, cattle entered in the BBS program will have their own separate set of points that will run parallel to the BEST program, like the Novice and Bred & Owned Divisions whose points are a subset of their regular class points. The program will end at the Ohio Beef Expo and will recognize both breeders and exhibitors of the top placing BBS cattle at the OCA BEST Awards Banquet on May 7, 2022. The BBS program will not be a part of the Ohio State Fair.   

 New for 2021-2022 there is an additional $25.00 one-time per head nomination fee for BBS animals to be eligible to participate in BEST and accumulate BEST points. The BBS $25.00 nomination must be paid at the participant’s first show. The Ohio breeder of the BBS animal has the first responsibility to pay the $25.00 BBS nomination fee for any animals they have sold to juniors at the online form available by clicking here or the BEST exhibitor may pay the $25.00 BBS nomination, if it has not already been paid by the breeder, in addition to the $60.00 per head one-time BEST nomination fee, when they complete their online BEST nomination. Note – to exhibit BBS cattle in the Ohio Beef Expo junior show, all nominations for BBS animals must be paid by March 1, 2022.   

 New for 2021-2022 out-of-state juniors who purchase Ohio BBS cattle will be eligible to participate in BEST and exhibit them at all BEST sanctioned shows, compete for points and over-all year-end awards, providing they meet all other program eligibility requirements. This change will provide Ohio breeders of BBS cattle increased marketing and recognition opportunities for their Ohio bred and born registered cattle.   

 Eligibility requirements for out-of-state BEST BBS participants include meeting BEST age qualifications. Their immediate family must be current OCA members. They must make a one-time $60.00 per head BEST nomination and have a current Beef Quality Assurance (BQA) certification. To be eligible to exhibit at the 2022 Ohio Beef Expo, out-of-state juniors must have exhibited in at least one previous BEST sanctioned show for the 2021-2022 show season. 

Out-of-state BEST BBS participants may only show BBS eligible cattle at the Ohio Beef Expo.   Out-of-state juniors will be eligible to compete in BEST showmanship competitions, prior to the Ohio Beef Expo, but are not eligible to accumulate BEST points for showmanship placings. Showmanship at the 2022 Ohio Beef Expo will be open to Ohio exhibitors only.     

 For cattle to be eligible for BBS points, they must be registered and bred by an Ohio cattleman. ET calves and calves out of purchased bred cows are eligible if they list an Ohio cattleman as the breeder. Note that if BBS eligible cattle are registered in multiple owners’ names, as-long-as one of the owners listed on the registration paper is from Ohio, the animal is eligible for nomination.   

 For the Ohio Beef Expo BEST Show following each breed division champion drive there will be a BBS champion drive. The top 2 animals from each class will come back immediately following the breed’s final drive to show for the BBS final drive. The judge will pick the top 2 heifers and steers in each breed division with additional premiums paid to the Champion and Reserve Champion BBS cattle in each division. Breed associations may make additional premium donations to their breed’s BBS cattle. All breed association premium donations will be recognized. BBS placings and points will coincide with the show’s original class placings.


 22. BEST Online Resources  
OCA BEST rules, show season current point standings, show information and results will be posted on the Ohio Cattlemen’s Association website www.ohiocattle.org under the Events & Programs tab.   https://best.ohiocattle.org   

 BEST nominations and ALL online show entries must be made at best.ohiocattle.org. 

User registration and BEST nominations will open in November 2021. Show entries may be made starting on the Monday preceding the weekend of a BEST show through the closure of check-in at each show. Each exhibitor, BEST and non-BEST will need to create a username and password for each exhibitor. Under each username, they will log the cattle that they will be exhibiting for the season. At the first BEST sanctioned show, the animal’s EID tag number will be recorded and will be used to check that animal in at any future BEST show for the 2021-2022 show season. Once the participant and animal are entered into the system, show entries must be made prior to each show. Users must log in to enter their cattle prior to each BEST show. Exhibitors may then pay for show entries online with a credit card or they may choose to pay upon arrival at the BEST show. Computers will also be available at each BEST show to facilitate online check-in. Please note that all cattle MUST be entered in the show prior to bringing cattle through check-in.


 23. BEST Scholarships The BEST program offers a scholarship program based on academics and extracurricular activities for high school juniors and seniors or older pursuing a post-high school degree. Only 2020-2021 OCA BEST and Stockmanship participants are eligible to apply for BEST scholarships. 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. BEST scholarships are due on April 1 and will be awarded at the BEST Awards Banquet on May 1, 2021. 


 24. BEST Photography Contest 
The BEST program will also sponsor a photography contest with four categories including: BEST Shows & Activities, Landscapes, People, and Around the Farm. There will be four divisions of awards for the photography contest based on the showmanship age divisions plus an adult division. Adults are eligible to enter the photography contest for a fee of $10 per person which must be submitted by the April 1 entry deadline by contacting the OCA office. ALL Photography Contest entries MUST be submitted electronically by April 1 of the current BEST year. Digital submissions must be high resolution (2 MB or greater) and submitted through the OCA website. BEST photography contest awards will be presented at the end of the year BEST Program Awards Banquet.


25. Alcohol Prohibition No alcohol will be permitted in the make-up area or show ring of BEST shows. The BEST Committee will strongly encourage sanctioned shows to hire local authorities to enforce legal drinking ages and open container laws. 


 26. Committee Decisions The decisions of the BEST Committee, subject to approval of the Ohio Cattlemen’s Association board of directors, on all issues pertaining to the BEST program and events at BEST sanctioned shows shall be final. The Ohio Cattlemen’s Association and the OCA BEST program are not responsible for accidents. 


¹Buckeye Breeders Series – Registered steer or heifer bred, born and raised by an Ohio breeder that has its own points division within the BEST program.

 ²One $75 OCA membership provides 12 months of member service and covers all siblings in the immediate family.

 ³BEST Nomination – a $60 one-time per head nomination fee to be paid by the BEST participant. The BEST $60 nomination must be paid for each animal nominated for the BEST program.

 ⁴Buckeye Breeders Series – a $25 one-time per head nomination fee to be paid by the Ohio breeder of the BBS eligible animal. (If not paid by the breeder, BEST BBS participant can pay the $25 nomination for their BBS animal through the BEST online software.) The BBS $25 nomination must be paid for each BBS animal nominated for the BEST program.


Thank you, 2021-2022 Sponsoring Partners!