UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. — Despite having only a few weeks to shift an in-person auction to an online event, the 18th annual Penn State Equine Science Showcase and Quarter Horse Sale was a smashing success, organizers said. Twelve horses sold for approximately $94,700, giving this sale the highest average sale price per horse in the program’s history.
Interested buyers could place bids on the horses throughout the week of April 27, and the bidding closed at 7 p.m. May 2. The top selling horse, PSU Nite to Be Ceen, sold for $12,000, and three more horses sold for more than $10,000.
“Three years ago, we had our first horse sell for $10,000 through the auction format,” said Brian Egan, assistant teaching professor of equine science and horse farm coordinator. “To have the horses averaging close to $8,000 is fantastic for the program. It speaks to the quality of our horses and the work the students put into the sale.”
Five student managers and about 60 other students are involved in running the sale. With classes being moved to an online format, the students worked from home to finalize the sale process.
One of the sale managers, Meg Gingerich, a supply chain and information systems major, said, “The students took this change in stride, and we couldn’t be prouder of the work they put in. The sale takes a lot of work on everyone’s part.” Gingerich, who is from Columbia, Pennsylvania, will begin a job as an operations supervisor for Dollar General now that she has graduated.
This group of 2-year-old horses marks the end of an era for Penn State quarter horses. They are the last group sired by the late stallion, PSU Dynamic Krymsun. Next year’s horses are sired by different stallions that have been added to the herd.
These include One Hot Krymsun, an American Quarter Horse Association leading sire and National Snaffle Bit Association Hall of Fame inductee, and Red White N Good, who has produced NSBA world champions and AQHA high-point winners. Offspring of Penn State-born stallion, PSU He Rox the Nite, will be available again next year.
“Next year’s horses will have different bloodlines, but the quality associated with Penn State will still be there,” said Ed Jedrzejewski, veterinarian and herdsman at the quarter horse farm.
One part of the in-person event that was lost due to moving online was the annual silent auction to benefit the Ward Studebaker Endowment, which helps provide financial support for the horse farm. However, a silver belt buckle designed and produced for the program by Molly’s Custom Silver was auctioned to make up for that loss.
“It was a really beautiful piece and a great way to support the endowment,” said animal science major Isabella Cerrone, of Muttontown, New York, who graduated this past weekend and will be starting veterinary school at the University of Glasgow in the fall. “Additionally, it gave alumni and others an opportunity to participate in the sale even if they weren’t looking for a horse.”
Professional Horse Services LLC, of Hillsboro, Virginia, ran the online auction.
“They were wonderful to work with and incredibly helpful,” said Class of 2020 animal science alumna Scarlett Loya, of Washington, Pennsylvania. “We had a tight turnaround time for moving everything online, and we couldn’t have done it alone.”
Loya has been involved with the program during all four years of her time at Penn State and even owns a Penn State quarter horse. She will be starting veterinary school at the University of Pennsylvania in the fall.
The 19th annual Penn State Equine Science Showcase and Quarter Horse Sale will be held May 1, 2021. The format is still under consideration, however.
“We’re open to trying the online auction again or perhaps a hybrid of both formats,” Egan said. “We were pleasantly surprised by the success of this sale. The sale is always evolving, and maybe this could be our next big leap.”
For more information, visit https://animalscience.psu.edu/facilities/horse/quarter-horses or follow the Penn State Quarter Horses Facebook and Instagram pages. Egan can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or 814-863-0569 with questions.