Friday, 14 June 2013 09:17

4-H youths show off skills gained after a year of hard work

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4-H youths show off skills gained after a year of hard work Photo by Rose Sanchez

It was a productive day for 4-H members at the annual Medicine Hat and District 4-H Beef Show and Sale June 8.

Clubs represented at the event were Bindloss Multi, Irvine Beef, Borderline Multi, Medicine Hat Beef and Seven Persons Beef.
“It was a very good day,” says Terry Elliott, Medicine Hat District president. “We had a good turnout for the sale with 82 registered bidders and 60 buyers.”
4-H members work hard all year to prepare for the show and sale which always takes place in June.
Not only do they have to raise their own calf for the event, but they take part in clinics as a group also learning how to properly groom and handle their animals.
“We have a mock achievement day that we do with our own club,” says Nikki Obrigewitch, a leader with the Seven Persons Beef Club, who has three children involved in 4-H.
The youths have to pretend it is actual show day where they compete in a show ring, groom their animals and place them in their halters, all while dressed in their show attire.
“They’ve done all the motions to make sure they are as prepared as they can be,” adds Obrigewitch. “We want to make sure all the calves are safe to be brought here. That’s the most important thing. Safety is number one.”
4-H members learn a lot of skills through their involvement with the organization.
Ten-year-old Justina Renke, with the Irvine Beef Club, was at her first show and sale with her steer Long-John. Her older sister has been involved with 4-H for a number of years and Renke thought it would be fun to join also.
“I thought you could just walk right up to them,” says Renke, about working with cattle. “I’ve learned it takes time for them to get used to you.”
Kade Krauss is 14 and in his fifth year with the Irvine Club. He likes the fact that 4-H is about making a calf tame — not something a rancher is usually trying to do.
The hardest part about taming that calf, is getting the halter on.
“Then it gets a lot easier after that,” he says.
Brother and sister duo Sean and Avery Crocker were at the show helping represent the Bindloss Multi Club.
Sean, 14, is in his first year in 4-H, and although he has been working with cattle for years, he felt it was finally time do so through a 4-H club.
“That way I can get experience how to handle them and control them,” he adds.
He was surprised just how much work goes into raising a calf, from hauling it around to feeding and grooming it.
Avery is in her ninth and final year with the club and is the club president. She will be moving on to university in Saskatoon in September.
“I love doing it and it is a very good way to save for university,” she says. “I want to be a doctor so schooling is going to be expensive.”
Avery likes how much she has been able to learn about animals as well as the public speaking component of 4-H.
She plans to continue to be involved in 4-H in the future, helping judge events and mentor younger members when she returns home.
Obrigewitch agrees that 4-H members are learning valuable skills for the future.
“They’re learning a great work ethic with the early mornings and late nights and working out in the cold,” she says. “There’s also public speaking and community service. You’re not going to get that kind of opportunity anywhere else. If you have 4-H on a resumé, people love that. People love a 4-H kid, they just do. They can speak, work hard and make a presentation.”
Elliott agrees 4-H provides unique opportunities for young people to earn money for their post-secondary education and gives them a headstart in their careers.
“Most 4-H kids end up being hired because of their 4-H background.”
Following are the overall show results:
• District Grand Champion: Nicona Brost (Irvine Beef Club);
• District Reserve Grand Champion: Cloey Brown (Bindloss Multi Club);
• Highest Rate of Gain: Logan Neubauer (Irvine Beef Club);
• District Grand Champion Showmanship: Nicona Brost (Irvine Beef Club);
• District Reserve Grand Champion Showmanship: Erica Brost (Irvine Beef Club);
• District Stall Decorating: Borderline Multi Club;
• District Proficiency Award: Irvine Beef Club;
• 75 Calves Sold at an average of $2.08.
• Bindloss 4-H Multi Club — Champion Cloey Brown; Reserve Champion Carter Eremenko; Champion Showmanship Carter Eremenko; Reserve Showmanship Jessica Gomke.
• Irvine 4-H Beef Club — Champion Nicona Brost; Reserve Champion Erica Brost; Champion Showmanship Nicona Brost; Reserve Showmanship Erica Brost.
• Seven Persons 4-H Beef Club — Champion Kody Traxel; Reserve Champion Ryan French; Champion Showmanship Kody Traxel; Reserve Showmanship Jordyn Sumners.
• Borderline 4-H Multi Club — Champion Bailey Herrmann; Reserve Champion Lacy Becker; Champion Showmanship Rayanne Becker; Reserve Showmanship Brandon Becker.
• Medicine Hat 4-H Beef Club — Champion Michaela Lundquist; Reserve Champion Blake Weisgerber; Champion Showmanship Tevin Schmidt; Reserve Showmanship Blake Weisgerber.

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Rose Sanchez

Assistant Managing Editor

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