Illinois Beef Expo 2018

Colton and Casen Hals hoof it behind steers at the 2018 Illinois Beef Expo in Springfield.

SPRINGFIELD, Ill. — Preparations are in gear for the 2019 Illinois Beef Expo, Feb. 20-24 at the Illinois State Fairgrounds in Springfield.

The trade show opens Feb. 20 at noon, with a variety of beef shows, sales, and junior events throughout the four-day expo, according to a news release.

A highlight is always the Illinois Performance Test Bull Sale, at 11 a.m. Thursday, Feb. 21. This sale has been a leader in introducing Illinois seedstock breeders and commercial cow-calf producers to the latest evaluation technologies and practices, said Travis Meteer, IPT bull sale manager. During the past 50 years, 4,740 bulls have sold for over $8.7 million. 

Unique to this year is a retirement reception from 8-10 a.m. Saturday, Feb. 23. It honors Cimeron Frost and Doug Turner for their more than 30 years of service to the event.

Turner and Frost’s time with the beef expo goes back to 1988, when a group of cattle enthusiasts created an event for cattlemen and women throughout Illinois to compete, promote and sell cattle.

Both members of the original expo board, Frost and Turner have provided leadership since its inception, said expo board member Julie Blunier.

“Their commitment to the Illinois Beef Expo will be forever appreciated and the more than 30 years spent with the Expo board will have a lasting impact,” Blunier said.

The Illinois Beef Expo Board of Directors elected Blunier to serve as the new chairman, and Stacey Lorenz, Illinois Beef Association director of outreach and promotion, will serve as the new Expo manager.