Jonathon Job pets his new Brown Swiss calf on the evening of Dec. 20. Jonathon was the youth winner for the Dairy Star’s Great Christmas Heifer Giveaway. Job is the son of Alice and Dave, who milk 55 cows near Freeport, Minn.PHOTO BY MISSY MUSSMAN
Jonathon Job pets his new Brown Swiss calf on the evening of Dec. 20. Jonathon was the youth winner for the Dairy Star’s Great Christmas Heifer Giveaway. Job is the son of Alice and Dave, who milk 55 cows near Freeport, Minn.
PHOTO BY MISSY MUSSMAN
FREEPORT, Minn. - For the last couple years, Jonathon Job has wanted a brown cow.
"We have all Holsteins on our farm, and I wanted something different," Jonathon said.
This Christmas, that wish finally came true. Jonathon won the Brown Swiss calf, Eachibon Jessa R Jamaica, in the Dairy Star's Great Christmas Heifer Giveaway. Jonathon is the 10-year-old son of David and Alice Job, who milk 55 cows near Freeport, Minn.
"I was so surprised," Jonathon said. "All I could think was, 'Did I really get this?'"
Jonathon registered three times, once at the Freeport State Bank and twice at Leedstone.
"I wanted to register more than once, because it gave me a better chance of winning," Jonathon said. "I've tried the last couple of years. It's fun trying to win it."
On Dec. 16, Jonathon's persistence paid off as he was drawn as the youth winner in the contest from Freeport State Bank.
That same day while Jonathon was at school, David came in the house from chores to hear a message from Dairy Star.
"When I called back, they told me Jonathon had won. I thought they were kidding," David said. "Then it dawned on me that the drawing was that day. I never thought this would happen."
Alice agreed.
"We feel very lucky," she said.
Although David and Alice knew, they kept it a secret from Jonathon until the calf was at home.
"We wanted it to be a surprise," David said.
On Dec. 20, Alice left for Melrose, Wis., at 8:30 a.m., to pick up the calf with David's parents, Louis and Mathilda Job, and family friends, Loren and Jane Scherping, while David stayed home to do chores.
"We told Jonathon that I was picking up decorations for a meeting we were hosting to keep him in the dark," Alice said.
As evening chores rolled around, Jonathon got ready to feed the calves like he normally does, but David stalled him until the calf arrived.
"I told him to wait since I had cleaned the pens earlier that day and hadn't fed the calves their hay until later," David said.
Thankfully, Jonathon believed him.
"I didn't think anything of it," Jonathon said.
But when the truck pulled in the driveway and backed up to the calf barn with a box in the back, Jonathon knew something was up.
He waited in the calf barn with his brother, Philip, 12, to find out what was going on. Once the Brown Swiss calf came out of the back of the truck, Alice told him he had won.
"My heart was beating so fast," Jonathon said. "I couldn't believe it."
During school the rest of the week, Jonathon told his friends about his prize animal and his plans to spend time with Jamaica in the future.
"I might take her to the fair at some point, and I'm just going to take really good care of her," Jonathon said.
But for now, he is enjoying the moment with his very own Brown Swiss calf.
"This is going to make calf chores a lot of fun for me now," Jonathon said. "This is the best Christmas present because I've always wanted to have a brown calf and now, I have one and it is mine."