The big bang dairyPublished 3:20pm Thursday, August 16, 2012
BERRIEN SPRINGS — Niles’ Emily Wagner names her farm animals after characters from the hit television show, “The Big Bang Theory.”
Her pigs are named Leonard and Penny, and her dairy cow, Priya.
“I’m a nerd,” joked Wagner, a 2011 grad of Niles High School.
Priya helped Wagner make a big bang of her own in Thursday’s dairy show at the Berrien County Youth Fair.
Wagner’s Priya was named grand champion dairy.
It’s the first grand champion animal for the 19-year-old Southwestern Michigan College sophomore, who has been showing animals since she was 5.
“I never thought I’d make it to this point because there is a lot of stiff competition, and they all did really well,” Wagner said. “I am just really happy, really surprised. I couldn’t believe they called me out.”
Showing animals is a Wagner family tradition that began with her father, Carl Jr., and continued with her brother, Carl III.
Emily’s win gives the Wagner family two grand champion animals as Carl III showed a grand champion dairy in 1999.
“It’s been a dry spell,” Carl Jr. said.
Emily has been showing dairy and swine since she was 5, but said she showed a feeder calf this year for “kicks and giggles.”
She has two more years of Berrien County Youth Fair eligibility.
“I’ll be back, but these are probably the glory days,” she said.
What was the key to her win Thursday?
“I paid off the judge,” said Emily laughing. “I’m just kidding, of course. I don’t know why I won today. She (the judge) just liked her I guess.”