Oklahoma Higher Education Campus E-Clips sponsored by the Communicators Council

February 2013

Doc Gardner Memorial Top Hand Auction the Best Yet at OPSU

An electric buzz of positive energy and pure enjoyment filled the Pickle Creek Event Center Saturday, Feb. 2 at a record-breaking 11th Annual Doc Gardner Memorial Top Hand Auction. Approximately $30,000 was raised which will be used to provide practice livestock, feed and facility upkeep for the team throughout the year.

"I'm just amazed at the turn out and the gracious support from everybody," head coach Craig Latham stated.

Communities in the Panhandle might not have majestic scenery, awe-inspiring tourist attractions, or even abundant natural resources like water and trees; however, they are known for having many generous, supportive, and passionate people.

Named sponsor of the year, Kim Peterson exemplifies all of these wonderful qualities. A hard-working, whole-hearted man, Peterson donates a delicious meal of Hunny's barbecue year after year. He provides outstanding food and service, and has been a major supporter of the Oklahoma Panhandle State University rodeo team for many years.

Auctioneer Clay Myers said, "It was an outstanding turn out. Everybody was willing to bid up and support the rodeo team. I have auctioned at every one of them, and am just glad to help out and support the rodeo team."

Team member Joe Frost took the reins as auctioneer for a while doing a good job at keeping the crowd entertained and even getting a compliment from Myers. Frost exclaimed, "I was extremely impressed with the support of the community at the auction, and I enjoyed getting to auctioneer because it's something that I love doing. It's a great way to interact with people in a fun exciting atmosphere!"

Top-selling items this year included auction pair Craig Latham and Robert Etbauer. Tri-County Electric bought the two cowboys, and we'll have to wait and see what job the company has in store for them. All team members sold extremely well this year as did all of the quality western items.

A handcrafted wagon wheel bench donated by Hue and Anita Helms of Helms Garden Shop brought in a total of $900 and Paul Latham's pine wood end table sold for $800. Jack Foster bought the four-day Colorado Elk Hunt donated by Joe Latham, and he is in for a great time. Local donations helped abundantly including Murray Beasley's contribution of six round bales. Many wonderful pieces of donated art, leatherwork, tack and western decor filled the tables. Every item big and small sold very well.

No words can fully express how much the rodeo team appreciates the many supporters and donations that helped make this year's Top Hand Auction the best one yet. The rodeo team is truly blessed to have the backing from the communities of the Panhandle. Passion and pride thrives not only in the spirit of the Oklahoma Panhandle State University rodeo team, but in the spirit of all who support the "winning tradition," as well.

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