Hometown: Lead Hill, Ark.
In Town: “When I was a senior in high school, I wanted to start my own lawn care business. I named the business Kendrick Lawn Care and made business cards, as well as advertising on Facebook and social media. I mow lawns and weedeat. I got my first commercial contract last year mowing grass for the Lead Hill School District. Not too long before that contract, Roy Max Richey asked me to work for him in his masonry business. During the mowing season, I typically work for him all week and mow on weekends. We have an open arrangement where I can take time during the week if I need it, so this works out really well for me. I learned how to lay blocks and bricks which I really enjoy because not only is it physical and outside but it is also creative in terms of making attractive patterns and developing good curb appeal.”
In the Country: “My brother Zack and I showed sheep when we were young and started raising club lambs as a business in 2007. We worked together for a number of years, but then, in 2015, Zack moved to Fayetteville so he is no longer hands-on but a business partner nonetheless. At this time, I am very focused on my town careers and limit myself to 10 Hampshire/Suffolk ewes and a ram of the same cross. We started with that particular cross because that was what was trendy and it still is. The show business is a predictability war, which means we try to raise what is currently popular with judges and select our ewes with the same criteria in mind. Because our market is youngsters showing sheep, we put the ram in with the ewes at the end of August until the beginning of November. Lambs are then ready for purchase in March. That gives the kids two months to prepare for the show season. Many youngsters keep their animals at school because they have no facilities at home. Consequently, we sell the lambs with the understanding that we would be glad to buy them back after show season. They have a guaranteed market and we secure genetic advantage in keeping our bloodlines and confirmation. Arkansas has a breeders’ competition. The lamb with the most points for the show season wins Premier Breeder. After we won that title, our name recognition was much higher. Our health protocol is based upon a veterinary-created sheep management chart, and includes two rounds of worming and two rounds of an eight-way CDT vaccination.”
Future: “I would someday like to have my own family farm with about 100 acres and 100 ewes. As far as the industry goes, kids will always be showing so raising show lambs will remain viable. Two things keep the process challenging and interesting: adapting to changing regulations and producing lambs with current judge preferences.”