Hometown: Stover, Mo.
Family: Parents Lee and Stacy Marriott, and fiance Joe Popejoy
In Town: Bailey Marriott is the manager of the Rocking M Ranch Western Emporium in Stover, Mo., which she started with her parents, Lee and Stacy, six years ago.
“We sell western clothing, women’s fashions, jewelry, saddles, tack, and American (brand) cowboy hats that are made in Texas,” Bailey explained. “We also clean and shape cowboy hats of all kinds, not just the ones we sell but any that are brought in to us. It’s truly a dying art these days. Not a lot of folks do that anymore.”
In the Country: “My family and I raise commercial Balancer cattle on our Rocking M Ranch, a business that includes my parents, three other siblings and their families. We have a cow/calf operation of approximately 700 head that we have spread out over 3,500 acres of land that we own, as well as some rented acreage. We also do all our own custom haying.
“This is my first year to get my project up and running, the Rocking M Ranch Rent-A-Steer program. I’m really excited about it. I wanted to find a way to get more youth involved in the cattle industry so I started a rent-a-steer program. FFA or 4-H youth who don’t have the means to raise their own show steer or a place to keep it, can sign a contract and take over the ownership of a single steer. This all runs through the Missouri State Fair so upon signing, the youth owns the steer and is required to put in so many hours a week of care of their steer. This was our first year and the kids have each put in more than 100 hours each on their calves. At the end of the year, they can sell their steer at the county fair for a premium price and then they pay a small rental fee back to the program and ranch. The steer stays on the ranch fulltime and is fed by the ranch. The youth member is responsible for the entry fees and taking responsibility for the care of the animal. This year we had three young ladies to participate. Next year, I plan to have six to 10 steers available.”
“We are not only trying to teach these kids to be good stewards of raising our next generation of cattle but also helping them to become responsible young adults.”