Bright Future: Rollins’ goat wins awards
NATCHEZ — If Tory Rollins could drink milk from a cow, she and her 4-year-old goat, Valley, probably wouldn’t have won first place in the best in show competition at Dixie National Livestock Show.
The eighth grade Adams County Christian School student got her first two goats when she was 6 after she realized that goat’s milk didn’t give her the splitting headaches that she got from cow’s milk.
“I had really bad migraines and couldn’t drink cow’s milk because it made me sick,” Rollins said. “So we got two goats, so I could drink the milk, but then I started showing them at different shows.”
By the time she moved to Natchez two years ago, Rollins had already established a reputation in the goat showing circuit.
Rollins and Valley had previously won a number of awards including best in show Jr. Doe and first place in age 10-11 year showmanship during the 2011 Mississippi State Fair.
During the shows, goats are judged based on a variety of categories including general appearance and body capacity.
And even though she had won a number of awards with Valley previously, Rollins said she wasn’t as confident going into the Dixie National Livestock Show in Jackson.
“I wasn’t expecting her to do that well because her milk was dried up,” Rollins said. “When they have more milk it’s a good thing, but she didn’t have as much, so I didn’t think she would win.”
Another category in the shows is dairy character, where judges look for evidence of milking ability, among other things.
But all of Rollins’ hesitations were shattered when the judges announced that she and Valley won first place best in show.
“I can’t even remember what the judge said after he announced that we had won,” Rollins said. “I walked (Valley) out, and my mom was waiting on me screaming, and she gave me a big hug.”
And while winning the award was good enough for her, Rollins said it was what she was told after the contest was over that really made her day.
“I walked into the office and they started asking me to fill out all this stuff, so I could get a scholarship,” Rollins said. “I just said, ‘What scholarship?’ because I didn’t know there was any scholarship involved in the prize.”
Rollins received $1,200 in scholarship money that she can use for any college or university in Mississippi.
“That money won’t be going anywhere but Mississippi State,” Rollins said laughing. “That’s where I want to go, because they have more agricultural choices of things to study.”
Tory is the daughter of Deidra Rollins and stepdaughter of Freddie Gamberi.