“My Grandpa gave me my first Holstein when I was 6.” and that gift of Wishing Well Mata-RC really sparked Stephanie Aves lifelong interest in dairy cattle. In case there was any doubt where the family saw the future, Stephanie’s parents, Kevin and Julie, took her name and her brother Kyle’s and christened the farm with the prefix, “St-yle!” That happy label was further inspiration for Stephanie who reports that she was always involved trying to do chores and then “From age 8 I began showing at local and county fairs.”
Show Your Winning St-yle
Stephanie had successive years in the winner’s circle and has added these honors to her show ring credits:
- 2005 Senior Showmanship Winner World Dairy Expo Fitting & Showing
- 2006 Jr Champion Grand Int. Red & White Show (JR/Open)
- 2007 Winner of Sr Showmanship World Dairy Expo
- 2008 Supreme champion JR Show World Dairy Expo
- 2009 Grand Champion Grand International RW Jr Show
- 2010 Bred the Intermediate Champion Grand International RW Jr Show who then became my first Bred & Owned JR All American.
- Also was honored with the Merle Howard Award in 2010.
- 2011 Won the Sr Best 3 Class at the Grand International RW Show. (All daughters of Joyful by Advent)
Currently In St-yle
Stephanie provides this St-yle update where we can see that the show ring is definitely part of the big picture. “Currently ST-YLE Holsteins consist of my Parents, Kevin & Julie, and my brother Kyle and I. We have about 100 head of cattle total on the farm consisting of Holsteins, Red & Whites, and Jerseys. We also are currently boarding about 10 show quality animals being Red & White, Jersey, Guernsey, and Holstein. In 2007 we completed our show barn that features 2 big box stalls to hold a max of 8 milking cows, along with 7 individual pens for heifers, and 2 box stalls for individual cow care when calving or needed for show rations.”
Do You Have That in Red?
Whenever you set goals that include the show ring, there are bound to be opportunities and obstacles. Stephanie confesses “The biggest challenge to me has been to find sires that combine the pedigrees along with the conformation that are Red & White or RC. Those Red of RC sires are few and far between that have something that I would use to breed to make the next show winner. It has even gotten harder with increase in genomics.
The Beginning of Joyful St-yle
Once again, we hear how “luck” played a part in hard-working, well-planned dairy operations that achieve success. “I have had a great amount of luck over my past 10 years. I have 2 animals that were the foundation of ST-YLE Holsteins. Scenic-Edge Joyful who I purchased in May 2006 who was JR Champion WDE, then on to be named Supreme Champion as a 2 year old at WDE. Joyful now has 4 daughters on the farm. 3 by Advent, and 1 by Talent-RC. Savage-Leigh Alexee-ET is also another great individual that I owned she was the 2007 All-American Spring Calf. Both these 2 were foundation animals that have truly left an impact on ST-YLE.
Joyful was purchased after Spring Show 2006. I saw Joyful show in her class that year and I knew I needed her. Seven years later Joyful is still leaving that impression on me. When I saw her was the complete package she had everything I wanted style, balance, and strength. Joyful also has a great pedigree which is a huge selling point in animals to me. They have to be able to back up the looks that they have and show that they are going to be able to make a great cow.
From exporting embryos around the world Joyful now has 1 bull testing to be in stud at KI De Toekomst in Holland. Defender is a Debonair out of Joyful. He also has a full sister in Sweden. Semen will be available in April in the UK. In July 2013 Joyful will also have 1 heifer and 1 bull in Columbia.
Alexee I picked at the Savage Leigh sale in 2007. Alexee caught my eye being the biggest calf in the group combining that with the pedigree she had. I remember the day I bought her my mom said “She’s a 1 month old calf, and you never know how she’s going to turn out.” I knew even though she was very young she had every potential to be my next All American. “
Currently Looking Good and In St-yle
We love to hear how people are moving forward and what their focus is. “Currently we are working with 2 Advent X Joyful- Jumpn 4 Joy (4yrOld), and Itz Joytime (5YrOld). I bred both of these and own Joytime still. In September 2012 a part of Jumpn was sold to Todd Galton. Advent was a choice I made as there was not a huge selection of RW Sires. Advent was popular and fit the need at that time. We also have a Fall Yearling for 2013 (JumpRope) out of a herd bull, and have a Redburst Heifer by Joytime (Itz SpringTime).”
St-yle Savvy Sires
As previously mentioned, Stephanie finds it’s very slim pickings when looking for red and white sires to use. She explains. “It is especially hard to find ones to use on Advents. We are currently using Redburst on the Advents X Joyful as he is making them a little more dairy, and longer necked. As far as Holstein’s bulls we have been using Gillete Windbrook and Atwood.
St-yle Must Have Pedigree – Pick from the Name Brands
This youthful dairy breeder encourages others to follow their dream. “The biggest piece of advice I have is to make sure when you are purchasing animals to make sure they have the pedigree to back the animal up. I’ve seen a lot of people older and younger make huge investments in animals that have nothing behind them to fall back on. At least animals with a pedigree that can’t be shown you can say there is pedigree and that it holds value for the animal otherwise they are just another heifer.”
St-yle is getting the Word Out: Black and White and Read All Over
Having a market to sell to is especially crucial when you’re breeding show type animals. “Social Media and Word of mouth is the 2 biggest things we use to market ourselves. We have set up a Facebook page for the farm and use that as our primary marketing tool. We used to have a website, but didn’t find the amount of interest was there from the website that couldn’t be on Facebook. I actually sold more embryos online on Facebook in 1 year then on my website in 2 years. Keeping things fresh and updated is the key. The more you see it the more it sticks in their mind. We have giveaways here and there to give away St-yle gear. People enjoy getting gifts and its free advertising for you.”
The Bullvine Bottom Line: Tomorrow’s Style Forecast
There are times when we fantasize that we would like to have three wishes granted. Stephanie imagines what her questions would be. “What are the right choices of the dairy industry to make things profitable, and successful for my dairy career? Is it genomics, polled, red and white, Holsteins, or colored breeds? If someone could tell me now what even 3 years in the dairy industry is going to be let alone what 10 years will bring could help set up what I am doing today to make things assist in a successful tomorrow.” We hope she shares if she finds the answers.