By Steve Rickman
UT Extension Agent
Chester county 4-H was well represented in the recent State 4-H Livestock Judging Contest on June 1. This annual event is held on the campus of UT Knoxville on the first Tuesday of June. Twelve teams from across the state of Tennessee qualified in their respective regions. Chester county, one of four teams from the western region placed 10th in the contest.
Livestock judging is a process of evaluating, selecting, placing, and learning the various livestock, species – beef cattle, sheep, swine, and goats. Judging is the foundation of any 4-H livestock project. Livestock judging enhances decision making capabilities and provides the opportunity to defend those decisions through oral reasons. Oral reasons provide the framework for public speaking skills. Livestock judging also builds character, integrity, and honesty. Team members learn to network with other individuals and producers who share similar interests.
Chester county team members included; Tanner Fowler, Paul Jones, Will Kemp, and Lucus Tucker. Alternates also making the trip to Knoxville; Colton Hopper and Madison Woofter. All of these students are 4-H/FFA members at Chester County High School. The team was coached by UT Extension 4-H agent, Steve Rickman and Tereasa Crouse, 4-H/FFA advisor, agriculture teacher-CCHS.
The team from Chester county was by far the youngest, most inexperienced team at the state contest. Three ninth graders, and one 10th grader made up this year’s team. My goal for our senior high teams this year was to qualify and compete in the state contest. I am very proud of all six of these students for their hard work and effort. This was a great experience that will help them tremendously next year. Thanks go out to the parents who helped make this trip possible, and to Mrs. Tereasa Crouse from CCHS for her leadership and attending the contest. Now we know what to expect and have some great resources to train our 4-H students in the future.
4-H activities are alive and well in Chester county this summer. Two of our 4-H youth just competed in the Western Region 4-H Horse Championships at UT Martin last weekend. Be sure to check out that article coming soon in the Chester County Independent. 4-H chickens will be arriving on June 17 for a bunch of happy 4-Hers. Followed by two 4-H students competing in the Western Region Beef Cattle Show at UT Martin on June 25. Do not forget about our 4-H Camp Traveling Road Show from 8 a.m. to 3 p.m. on Tuesday, June 29, to be held at Chickasaw State Park. Students in grades four-six as of January 1, 2021 are invited to attend. Space is limited so sign up immediately. For more information contact us at UT Extension-Chester County by calling 989-2103 and follow us on Facebook for news/updates and events.