Dedication for New Cattle Show Barns at ASU Ranch


SAN ANGELO, TX - Angelo State University hosted a dedication ceremony today (May 21) to officially open two new cattle barns at the Management, Instruction and Research (MIR) Center, commonly called the ASU Ranch, off U.S. Highway 87 just north of San Angelo.

The year-long project to completely renovate the existing Calving Barn and construct a new Show Cattle Barn was funded by a $500,000 gift to ASU from long-time supporters Alvin and Shelley New. In recognition of the gift, the ASU Agriculture Department's show cattle program that will utilize the barns has been officially named the Shelley New Show Cattle Program. The News have also donated a truck and trailer to transport show cattle to competitions.

"We are excited to advance a program at Angelo State," Alvin New said. "Having been a show steer mom, Shelley has a passion for young people and show cattle. Naming the program for Shelley is special for me. We look forward to continuing this effort."

Additionally, Alvin New has previously purchased and donated cattle for the ASU herd as a base for superior show cattle genetics, as well as provided funding for student scholarships and travel.

"We are extremely grateful to Alvin and Shelley New for their generosity in supporting this program," said ASU President Ronnie Hawkins Jr. "These new facilities will give our student competitors many more opportunities for success and personal growth, and they will also help us recruit new students into the program. This latest gift also extends more than 15 years of continuous support from Alvin New that consistently creates opportunities for ASU students in our Honors Program and a variety of other educational disciplines."

The upgrades to the 1,955-square-foot Calving Barn included replacing the roof and siding, complete indoor renovation, and the addition of 1,440 square feet of space that contains seven new stock pens and a wash bay. The barn now houses a large covered chute area, nine stock pens, two wash bays and two storage rooms.

The new 2,592-square-foot Show Cattle Barn houses 11 stock pens, a wash bay and an open show area. Both barns are finished with blue siding and white metal roofs to match the other buildings at the MIR Center. The project also included an extension of the caliche roadway that leads to the barns.

"The Shelley New Show Cattle Program facilities will provide our students the ability to showcase their hard work with a physical space to prepare ASU cattle for exhibition," said Dr. Chase Runyan, chair of the Agriculture Department. "This program has grown to a point that having a dedicated space was critical to continue growing and improving it. Competing in livestock shows is a popular extracurricular activity for young people around the nation, and ASU is in a unique position to provide this opportunity to current and future ASU students."

Students in the Shelley New Show Cattle Program exhibit cattle from ASU's registered Angus herd, and Colbin Briley was recently hired as the program coordinator and the assistant ranch manager for the MIR Center. Only 6-8 students have been able to participate each year because the limited physical space and resources restricted the growth of the program. The new facilities will allow for a much greater number of participants.

"Students in this program will gain team-building experience, develop skills of accountability and reliability, and also have an enormous advantage in terms of direct access to a robust industry network," Runyan said. "On the surface, it seems like the students help develop and show off the quality of the livestock. But in reality, this program actually helps to develop and show off the quality of our students. I'm humbled and proud to be a part of this fascinating journey."

The plan for the Shelley New Show Cattle Program is to annually compete at the West Texas State Fair, State Fair of Texas, Fort Worth Stock Show & Rodeo, and Houston Livestock Show & Rodeo. Then, as schedules, resources and logistics allow, the team will compete at the National Western Stock Show in Denver, Cattleman's Congress in Oklahoma City, Dixie National Stock Show in Jackson, Miss., American Royal in Kansas City, and North American International Livestock Exposition in Louisville, Ken., as well as various regional shows.

The renovation and construction of the new barns was completed through a design-build collaboration between Onyx Solutions of San Angelo and ASU Facilities Planning and Construction, also in consultation with ASU Agriculture Department and MIR Center leadership.

(L-R) ASU President Ronnie Hawkins Jr., Alvin New, Shelley New, ASU Provost Don Topliff, Dr. Chase Runyan. 

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