Knoxville — Knoxville will be back in the spotlight this weekend, as the Knoxville Regional Livestock Market (KRLM) hosts the Livestock Marketing Association's World Livestock Auctioneer Championships.
The Championships will bring the 31 best auctioneers in the United States and Canada to Knoxville. The event coincides with LMA's convention, taking place at the Marriott Hotel in Des Moines. Knoxville's proximity to Des Moines was not the only reason it was selected to host the contest.
"Knoxville really shines through as one of the best livestock auctions in the Midwest," Kristen Parman, with the LMA, said was among the reasons why Knoxville was selected for this honor. KRLM is a member of the LMA in good standing and meets other preliminary requirements. With the quality of KRLM's facilities, personnel and reputation, Knoxville as a community showed a great deal of enthusiasm and eagerness to welcome the event.
"It's an honor for us," Joe Wright, with KRLM said. The request to host the event was submitted in 2010, and KRLM learned of its selection in June 2012. Championships have been held two other times since 1963; it was held in Humeston in 1985 and Dunlap in 2002.
Iowa is also at the crossroads of cattle and corn, according to the LMA's Lindsay Graber. Graber went on to say that there are "dramatic elements" that made Knoxville unique and a good fit for this competition.
Contestants are expected to arrive Thursday afternoon. At that time, KRLM plans to do a microphone check. When the levels are set, the sound system will not be touched again before Saturday's auction contest. Wright said the goal is to have an equal playing field for all contestants.
On Friday, contestants will take part in personal interviews as part of the contest. Each will be asked the same three questions, all of which are related to livestock-industry issues. Five judges will score the interviews, and 25 percent of this score will carry over into the actual contest on Saturday.