The Youth Livestock Auction at the State Fair of Texas is the beginning of the end of Emily Brite's show career.
On Friday, she was scrubbing the face of her reserve champion lamb, Tex, to get him ready for the sale.
"Trying to make him look clean," Emily said, as she wiped and combed Tex. "Yes ma'am, it is actually a very big deal to make the sale."
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The Granbury native started showing animals in the youth organization 4-H when she was 8 years old. Now 17, this is her last year to show animals as a 4-H competitor.
"I mean, it's sad, but it's also a good thing," Emily said.
For the only child, her parents are heavily involved with her animals and help her tremendously. It's a group project, but Emily is the one who gets to walk into the show pen.
"Very proud," said Emily's mom, Ellen Brite, about her daughter's accomplishments.
Looking back at how competing in 4-H has influenced her daughter was an emotional topic, because Ellen was also in 4-H as a youth.
"It just teaches them the very basics of life skills: responsibility, public speaking skills, not to cry on TV!" Ellen said with a laugh. "But it's grown her into an individual that there are no limits for her."
Now that the competition aspect of the fair is over for Emily, we asked her how she felt getting ready for the auction.
"I get nervous, just because I don't want to go in there and mess up," Emily said with a laugh. "He [Tex] could run off, he could get loose."
But he didn't, and the livestock auction went perfectly smooth for Emily and Tex.
Tex sold for $3,500. Emily said she gets to keep $2,500 of that money—the rest goes to the State Fair's scholarship program.
The amount she gets to keep will go toward college.
Now that her youth livestock experience is coming into its final year, Emily said she is grateful.
"It is relieving that I've made it this far and that we've had the success that we've had," she said.
Soon, the State fair of Texas will be reduced to great memories for her, but they'll always come back with the smell of funnel cake and saw dust.