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What is a Cowboy Auction?

We recognize that multiple buyers might be interested in purchasing the same animal(s). In an effort to “level the playing field,” so to speak, we will conduct a Cowboy Auction at  1:15 p.m. for those interested in purchasing a bull on Bull Day. 

Drawing from low-pressure sale approaches of Kit Pharo (Pharo Cattle Company) and Dave Nichols (Nichols Farm), here’s what you can expect from our Cowboy Auction:

There is no fast-talking auctioneer and no loud, in-your-face bid takers. Every bull has a base price posted on Bull Day. Bulls sell in catalog order, and only if there is interest, based on submitted Buyer Cards (and documented on the Bull Board). For each bull, we will ask those buyers interested in purchasing the animal at the base price (posted on sale day) to raise their Buyer Card. If there is only one number in the air, the bull will be sold to that number at the base price. If there is more than one number in the air, we will increase the price in $100 increments until only one number remains. This provides a very simple, low-pressure way to purchase bulls. You will always know what the bid is and who is bidding against you.

The only problem with our Cowboy Auction is there can be a tie bid when the last two (or more) buyers drop out at the same time. When that happens, we will give the bid to the bidder number with the lowest Buyer Card number. The other bidder(s) will then be required to increase the bid by $25 to stay in the auction. If s/he increases the bid, then the bidder with the lowest Buyer Card number can raise the bid another $25, and so on. This can usually break a tie in 5 or 10 seconds.

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