WEST JEFFERSON, Ohio — As the sun rises, Olivia Rinesmith is out the door, catering to her sheep.
“The main reason why I chose sheep was just for my love for agriculture. My older brother started showing sheep when we were in 4H and being the annoying little sister, I knew that I wanted to do exactly what he was doing and now we have a small flock of our own after we retired from our 4H and FFA years,” Rinesmith said.
She treats her sheep like family.
“So this front lamb that always loves the attention, her name is Sweetie. She was the first born that my brother and I had. She was actually a bottle baby and she was born on Christmas morning, so she's our little joy to the world,” she said.
Caring for the animals isn’t just a hobby. Rinesmith said doing so is a part of who she is. She has been showing sheep since she was a child and now at 20 years old, Rinesmith is the 2021 Ohio Lamb and Wool Ambassador.
The ambassador program was created by the Ohio Sheep Improvement Association. The title was originally referred to as the Ohio Wool Queen, but the group renamed the position in 2019. Young men are now encouraged to participate.
"I hope to travel as many county fairs that I can as well as events through the Ohio Sheep Improvement Association because, without them, I wouldn't be able to have this position today,” she said.