Our annual contest took place at the Salinas Valley Fairgrounds on April 8th, after which Carli Hammond (18), was chosen by the judges to represent the Fair for this coming year. In addition to being crowned, she was awarded a $2,000 scholarship, a sterling silver belt buckle, and other prizes donated by local business.
From a young age, she loved horses and wanted nothing more than a horse of her own. Her mother signed her up for lessons with Cecelia Coulson, and from there she was hooked. Carli has continued to ride with Cecelia Coulson for the past 13 years and owes all of her horsemanship skills to her. As Carli’s skills continued to advance, she purchased her horse, Vegas, with the money she earned from selling her livestock at the Salinas Valley Fair. Carli has continued to work hard to finish her horse’s training and hopes to see it all pay off. She can’t wait to see how her and Vegas’ future turn out.
Growing up in the Salinas Valley has piqued Carli’s interest in the livestock industry. She joined Spring 4-H at the age of 11, and has raised hogs, goats, and steers. Carli enjoys spending her free time with her livestock and making sure that they are in good care. She has held multiple officer positions during her time in Spring 4-H. Her favorite position was President, because she felt that it gave her leadership skills and confidence that helped her to be more outgoing. Some other positions she has held are Treasurer, Attendance Secretary, and Sergeant at Arms. She is currently serving as the Treasurer again this year for her club. Being a member of 4-H has helped Carli develop important skills and show her the ins and outs of the livestock industry.
Next year, she plans on working alongside her mom in agricultural sales. In the fall of 2024, she plans to move to Boise, Idaho and enroll in Paul Mitchell Cosmetology School. While Carli loves the community she was raised in, she wants to branch out and experience new places. She is forever thankful and indebted to the Salinas Valley and the amazing people that she has met here.
Carli always looks forward to the Salinas Valley Fair, because she gets to see all of her friends from different counties and even make new ones. Most importantly, she is always excited to exhibit her livestock and see how her hard work pays off. This year Carli is exhibiting a purebred, black angus steer named Harry. She has worked really hard with this steer, especially being that this is her last Salinas Valley Fair. Carli hopes to make this her most memorable and special fair experience. The Salinas Valley Fair is where she has made her most fond memories and Fair Week is her favorite time of the year.