Celebrate Eugene Blair’s legacy at Memorial Barrel Race

Published 9:30 am Wednesday, May 24, 2023

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The first annual Eugene Blair Memorial Barrel Race will be held on June 10 at the Chambers County Agricultural Arena. 

Exhibitions will be 9:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. The show will begin at 1 p.m. Peewee class for kids will begin first with entry at $10. Then, a live auction with Western and non-western items will begin. The open classes will start after 2 p.m. 

Belcher’s Mojo Grill Barbecue and other vendors will be available for guests to shop and enjoy food. There will be cakes, cheese straws and other food items available for purchase.

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“Anybody is welcome to come and join us on June 10,” said Blair’s daughter and barrel racer Taylor Arnett. “There’ll be something there hopefully for everybody. We encourage them to come out, and at the very least, just shop around and have some good food with us.”

Last February, Eugene Blair, a Fredonia cattle farmer and herd manager for Auburn, passed away. The Chambers County Cattleman’s Association has a scholarship fund for students pursuing fields in agriculture. 

“He had a strong love for agriculture and helping kids that were coming up, just trying to encourage them and basically help them out in any way that he could,” Arnett said.

To honor Blair, Arnett organized the memorial barrel race to raise funds for the scholarship. Arnett has been barrel racing since she was around 7 years old.

This year, the scholarship was awarded to Emily Grace Rezek, from Opelika. 

Blair grew up on a cattle farm in Fredonia. He got his bachelor’s degree in Animal Science. For many years, he worked as a technician for the large animal section at Auburn University. He later worked as a herd manager at Auburn from 2014 to 2022.