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Anyone who has been to a cattle show knows the excitement of the grand drive. The class winners return to the ring, there are whispers as the judge evaluates one more time, a hush falls over the spectators as the judge goes to the microphone and makes final comments. THEN, cheers erupt as the grand champion animal is selected.

Now imagine the grand drive is in downtown Aggieville, Manhattan, Kansas – that's right, right in the heart of the "Ville". That's just what will happen on the evening of April 17, when the Aggieville Showdown brings its division champion market animals and breeding heifers to a 36 foot by 48 foot showring on Moro Street in the heart of historic Aggieville.

Aggieville Showdown is the brainchild of Christian Calliham, who graduated from Kansas State University in May of 2020 with a degree in Agribusiness with an emphasis in Marketing.

He recalled how he and some friends enjoyed an evening in Aggieville, the community that developed connecting Kansas State University and Manhattan, Kansas. The group was discussing the divide between rural and urban. "I just said wouldn't it be great if we could have a cattle show right here in Aggieville!", Calliham recalled. With that simple pronouncement, the Aggieville Showdown began to develop.

But bringing such an event to the center of a thriving business district with over 100 unique businesses, including restaurants, bars, and specialty shops, was no easy task. Calliham put his marketing degree to work when he approached Dennis Cook the Director of the Aggieville Business Association. Cook said when Calliham pitched the idea to him, “I was all for it!! When I approached the Business Association Board of Directors, I was expecting some push back, but they were immediately excited.” Cook went on to say that the board said it sounded like a truly unique event, very different and is generating a great deal of excitement in the business district.

The establishment of an advisory board was an important element to make the Aggieville Showdown vision into an actual event. The board members provide industry knowledge to insure the event educates the general public about agriculture. Representing diverse agriculture backgrounds, board members and are essential to help exhibitors and the spectators who will be from all walks of life have the best experience possible.

The Aggieville Showdown, which is open to any youth exhibitor age 8-25 years old, was postponed from 2020 due to COVID -19 restrictions to the spring 2021. Even with the cancellation of the 2020 show, the Showdown team never stopped planning and used the extra year to expand the inaugural event. The 2021 Showdown will include a western clothing fashion show, a concert with country recording artist Lucas Maddy, a cowboy poet, and vendors providing unique shopping experiences leading up to the climax - the Grand Drive.

The event will begin on April 16 when exhibitors, which Calliham expects from all over the country, start arriving at the Riley County Fairgrounds. The show billed as a prospect cattle show offers $5,000 in prizes, begins at 9:00 AM on the 17th with showmanship, followed by market steers/heifers and then breeding heifers.

At 6:30 PM, the event will move to Moro Street beginning with the pre-drive entertainment. No other cattle show in the nation has created a Grand Drive in the center of a famous business district. Aggieville, has an old west charm with wooden storefronts and antique marquees. Calliham has connected the atmosphere of Aggieville with the show's logo, featuring the outline of a theater marquee. While the theater is now Ralley House, the marquee is visible the length of Moro Street and a recognizable Aggieville symbol.

The moment everyone has been waiting for will begin later that evening, when the division-winning steers step onto a city street - a one of a kind showring. Breeding heifer selection will follow the steers, and then the announcement of the showmanship winners and the evening will culminate with live interviews from the winners.

Calliham hopes these interviews, as well as discussions around the ring, will begin conversations about the cattle industry.

"I want the Aggieville Showdown to let people learn about the cattle industry. I want them to see the hard work and determination that goes into raising and showing cattle."

For additional information about the Aggieville Showdown, including entry fees and deadlines: go to

MANHATTAN, Kan. (November 19, 2020) – The originally planned 2020 Aggieville Showdown has been rescheduled due to the pandemic, setting a new date of April 17, 2021.

The Aggieville Showdown will feature exhibitors from across the country who compete for large cash prizes and the opportunity to show their cattle at a Grand Drive event in the Aggieville Business District.

“Even with the cancellation of the 2020 Aggieville Showdown, our team never stopped planning for the inaugural show,” says Christian Calliham, Aggieville Showdown Founder and General Manager. “We used our new timeline to expand the event into more opportunities that we are excited to share.”

The public is invited to watch the Grand Drive at 6:30 p.m. on April 17 in the Aggieville Business District. The evening will feature the following:

· Western fashion show taking place in the center of Moro Street

· Recording artist Lucas Maddy performing his top hits

· Selection of champions with over $5,000 in cash prizes

· Live interviews of the winning contestants

· Vendors providing a unique shopping experience

“No other cattle show in the nation has created a Grand Drive in the street of a popular business and entertainment district,” says Calliham. “We’re excited to do just that in Manhattan, giving participants the opportunity to show in a unique space and locals the chance to see agriculture in action.”

Exhibitors will arrive the afternoon of April 16 to prepare their cattle for the show, beginning at 9 a.m. April 17 at the Riley County Fairgrounds. Participants ages 8-25 years old will compete in the divisions of showmanship, prospect market beef and breeding heifers.

Ashley Judge and Jake Wagner from Loveland, Colorado have been selected to judge the show. Judge and Wagner will select the top six prospect market beef and breeding heifers to advance to the Grand Drive in the heart of Aggieville.

To learn more, visit


About Aggieville Showdown

The Aggieville Showdown is excited to unite exhibitors, students, businesses, and all public to celebrate agriculture in the ‘Ville! Exhibitors benefit greatly from cattle shows including the Aggieville Showdown and receive much more than a ribbon. Many exhibitors gain confidence, leadership, responsibility, network, make memories, and become leaders, hard-workers, as well as learn proper animal husbandry skills.

For more information regarding the Aggieville Showdown or how to become a sponsor or vendor please visit or reach out to Christian Calliham, Founder & General Manager at (785) 443-1569 or

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