4-H Friday News Blast!

1.18.19 - Sweater Weather!

4-H Council

Meeting is next Monday, January 21st ... At the Extension Office ... Meal at 6:45 pm.

Some people ask - what does the 4-H council do? Our 4-H Council Members are elected to:

  • Determine and make decisions on county 4-H policy.
  • Assist Extension staff on program planning.
  • Be a link between 4-H members, leaders, the County Extension Board and the public.

These members are here to serve you! They meet every other month and the meetings are open to the public. Please feel free to call the Extension Office or email us if you have something to bring up to the council. Our goal is to “Make the Best Better” and we can’t do that without you.


New 4-H Members - Which club?

So far we've heard from 4 clubs, how about the rest of you? ... As new members start contacting the Extension Office, we need to know which clubs are accepting new members, who to contact, and what your focus project areas are.

If you are a club leader, please send Sondra an email (sondra.buell@unl.edu) and let her know if your club is accepting new members. We would like to collect this information as soon as possible - thank you for your help.


Two New County Fair Assistant Superintendents

Cass County has an opportunity for you!!!

With a bit of knowledge about sewing, a few hours at fair time, organizational skills, and a passion for helping young 4-Hers in this project area, a new Assistant Sewing Superintendent and a new Assistant Fashion Show Superintendent can join us this year and learn all the ropes under the leadership of our current superintendents!

You don't have to be a 4-H leader. You do have to complete a profile and register in 4HOnline and have a background check. Let us know if this fits your skill set & interest, and can join our team this year! Contact us at the Extension Office.


4-H Dog Club Leader

Cass County is looking for a new Dog Club Leader. Are you interested, or do you know anyone who is interested in leading our Cass County youth who are signing up for the 4-H Dog Project? Contact the Extension Office at 402-267-2205.

Native Bee opportunity for 1 to 2 Cass County Teens

Announcement from Tracy .... Nebraska 4-H is looking for teens across the state who have an interest in teaching and engaging youth in their counties on the topic of Native Bees. 1-2 teens from Cass County are eligible to participate. Teens will be trained on Saturday, March 23rd in Central City and will be asked to develop a county plan for reaching 45-50 youth with the experience and evaluation. The experience is always a fun, interactive lesson plan to teach. The project period runs March – mid July, and Tracy would be happy to work with teens on this. If you are interested, please email Tracy at tracy.ensor@unl.edu by January 30th.


Special Garden Project - Red Pod Okra called Carmine Splendor - Deadline to order seeds is January 31st

Everything you'll need to know about this Special Garden Project can be found on this website: https://go.unl.edu/hz56

If you are interested in participating in 2019, do two things:

  1. Pre-order the seeds through the Cass County Extension Office by January 31st. (One packet per 4-Her). Email or call the office to let us know. We'll need your name and your club's name.
  2. Enroll in the Special Garden Project (select it from the drop down list of projects in 4HOnline)


Local Scholarship Opportunity for Cass County 4-H High School Seniors ...

New this year is the David Knabe Memorial Scholarship. One $300.00 scholarship will be awarded to a high school senior with plans to continue their formal education following graduation from high school. Application details can be found on our website at: https://go.unl.edu/i4s5 . Deadline is March 1st.


Computer Science Summer Workshop for High School Students

The Jeffrey S. Raikes School of Computer Science and Management at the University of Nebraska–Lincoln is pleased to announce a summer learning opportunity for high school students. Interested participants are able to find details and application materials at http://raikes.unl.edu/summerworkshops. A video found at https://youtu.be/ey6fPUMLlHw gives you a glimpse of what students can expect to experience.


4-Hers who cook ...

Last week in the News Blast we told you about the 4-H Culinary Challenge taking place on Saturday, August 31 during the second weekend of the Nebraska State Fair. It will be held in the Raising Nebraska building. It's a fun opportunity for 4-Hers age 10-18.

If you are looking for everything fun with 4-H food, recipes, food facts, etc .... THIS IS THE WEBSITE FOR YOU ... https://food.unl.edu/food-projects


Women in Agriculture scholarship

The annual Nebraska Women in Agriculture conference will be held Feb. 21 – 22, 2019 at the Holiday Inn Convention Center in Kearney. The Women in Agriculture Conference allows women to build relationships with each other, attend workshops and gain valuable knowledge that will help them support their farms and ranches. The theme for this year’s conference is, “Take Charge of Change.” There are 10 scholarships available for 4-H and FFA students! For more details and to apply, visit https://wia.unl.edu/scholarships


Horse - New Hippology Online Short Course

There is a new Hippology Online Short Course for youth, adults, leaders and extension personal who are interested in learning more about horses. Details can be found at: https://extension.unl.edu/statewide/cass/new-hippology-academy-online-short-course-2019/


Interested in Beekeeping? Here's a 2019 4-H Essay Competition Opportunity

Sponsored by: Foundation for the Preservation of Honey Bees

2019 Essay Topic: Honey Varietals, State to State

Each jar of honey reflects an unrepeatable combination of climate, soil, weather and flowers. Each state has unique honey varietals that beekeepers can market to their customers. Please identify one unique varietal to your state and discuss the flower’s uniqueness and how beekeepers can effectively market that varietal.

In your essay, please include a photo of the varietal’s flower, an interview with a local beekeeper who collects this varietal and a recipe that highlights the varietal.

Download the complete call for entries with competition rules and essay requirements.


NAYI - Nebraska Ag Youth Institute - July 8-12, 2019

High school juniors and seniors, it time to think about this for your summer. NAYI is a remarkable summer event if you are interested in agriculture!

The purpose of the Institute is to expose over 200 young adults from across the state of Nebraska to the opportunities available in the agriculture industry and to provide a networking opportunity for students as they reach the end of their high school career. NAYI is a five day program, held July 8-12.

The NAYI website is: http://www.nda.nebraska.gov/nayi/nayi

A brochure is posted on-line at http://www.nda.nebraska.gov/nayi/docs/nayi2019-brochure.pdf

Applications for NAYI are due April 15th.


College of Agricultural Sciences and Natural Resources

A spring open house for the College of Agricultural Sciences and Natural Resources will be held on Wednesday, February 13, from 8:30am – 12:30pm. With 30 diverse majors and a pre-professional program, CASNR creates an educational experience that positions students to have a lasting and impactful career that aligns with their passion. During the event, attendees will meet faculty, staff and current students to get the scoop on what life in CASNR is really like. Experience the Power of Red Visit Day will not only expose potential students to their academic future, but also the unique living-learning spaces on campus.

The visit day will begin at 8:30am with refreshments and a browsing session, where students get a brief introduction to each department in the college. Following a welcome at 9:15 a.m., students and parents will attend academic sessions that offer more in-depth information about each academic program. The event concludes with lunch and a scholarship drawing at 11:45am. Optional tours of City Campus and East Campus will begin at 12pm.

Advance registration is required by February 6. To register and to see the complete schedule for the day, visit https://casnr.unl.edu/visitday


Big Red Summer Academic Camps

Hey 4-Hers, have you heard about the Big Red Summer Academic Camps? It's time to get them plugged in to your summer calendar.

Big Red camps are residential, career exploration camps held at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln. They are open to all youth grades 10th - 12th, including recent high school graduates. Focus areas include Weather and Climate Science, Education, Engineering, Filmmaking, Outdoor Nebraska, Unicameral Youth Legislature, Teaching, and Veterinary Science. New this year is one called Discover Animation. Click here for details about each session.

ALL housing and food will be provided for all participants throughout the duration of the camp. Space is limited and camps will fill on a first-come, first-served basis. Limited scholarships are available to attend all Big Red Summer Academic Camps, significant scholarships may be available for select camps.

Please check http://bigredcamps.unl.edu for more information.




Individuals, Clubs, and Leaders,

Would you be looking for something fun to do with our club members? Would you be interested in an on-going “let’s-get-involved” activity?

Here’s one you might consider:

The University of Nebraska was chartered on February 15, 1869 and charged with its land-grant mission of public education and service to Nebraska. In 2019, we mark the 150-year legacy of improving the quality of life for Nebraska and beyond. Please join us in celebrating the historic past of your University and helping us chart a bold new future:


  • Participate in “Charter Day with N|150 ice cream from the Dairy Story or create N|150 cookies
  • Participate in “Glow Big Red” day
  • Copy, cut out, and make a “Flat Herbie” and snap pictures of him wherever you go
  • Make an N|150 Stepping Stone and enter it at the county fair
  • Use photography to tell the story of how the University has impacted you, your family, or your community? Tell the story through photography. Take your photographs to the fair.
  • Etc.

You can learn about all of these things at: https://4h.unl.edu/n150



KUDOS to Cole and Cannon Albert - they are the first 4-Hers in Cass County to complete their YQCA for 2019!!!

If you will be exhibiting livestock at the county or state fair, here is the website for YQCA: www.yqca.org. You will need your 4HOnline login to do YQCA.



KUDOS to the Fairland Giants 4-H Club! They held a food drive during the first part of January. They reached out to neighbors, friends and family to collect food to donate to the Elmwood, Ashland, and Greenwood community food banks.



KUDOS to those who support our Community Service Project of saving and collecting "tabs." We got another full bag in today!

NE State Level Opportunity for Volunteers Interested in the 4-H Companion Animal Program:

Are you interested in providing feedback and helping with steering the Nebraska State 4-H Companion Animal Program (dogs, cats, household pets)? Lisa Karr is looking for people willing and interested in serving on the Nebraska 4-H Companion Animal Advisory Committee.

This is a new committee. Lisa would like the membership of the committee to include extension faculty and staff, 4-H members, recent 4-H alumni, and 4-H adult volunteers from across the state. This committee would offer insight, review, and input for the operation and management of the Nebraska 4-H Companion Animal Program. Committee members would be expected to meet face-to-face and/or through scheduled conference calls (Zoom) or utilizing email to conduct committee business.

A regular meeting schedule and the roles of the committee will be set up once the committee is formed.

Those interested are encouraged to fill out the contact information form by the end of January, using this link: https://goo.gl/forms/W30ZpEuBdSOxM8332. Please contact Lisa Karr at 402-472-6458 or at lisa.karr@unl.edu if you have any questions.


Three calendars below ...

Upcoming Countywide 4-H Reminders

Jan 21 - Cass County Extension Office closed for Holiday

Jan 21 - 4-H Council Meeting, arrive at 6:45 (supper provided)

Jan 30 - Deadline for 4-Hers interested in serving on Bee Ag Innovators Experience
Jan 31 - Deadline for ordering seeds for the 2019 Special Garden Project

March 1 - Deadline for Freel/Lepert Family Scholarship

March 1 - Deadline for David Knabe Memorial Scholarship

March 16 - Deadline for NACEB Scholarship
Mar 15 - Deadline to re-enroll for 4-H at https://ne.4HOnline.com, Enrollment Instruction, Pick Your Project

April 1 - Deadline for Weeping Water Whiz Kidz Scholarship


Ag Information and Opportunities in and around Cass County ...

  1. Master Gardener Application Deadline Nears ... by Sarah Browning
  2. Cass/Otoe Cattlemen Affiliate Meeting ... January 31, 2019 at Cass Co Ext Office
  3. Successful Farmer Series ... Every Friday from Jan 4 - Feb 8, held at Lancaster County Extension Office
  4. Farm Beginnings Classes ... Saturdays: January 19 - May 4
  5. Acreage Life ... January Edition
  6. Hort Update ... from Nebraska Extension for December 26, 2018
  7. Ag-Line Newsletter ... January 2019
  8. Nebraska Master Gardener Volunteer ... application due by January 18, 2019
  9. Introductory (Year 1) Beekeeping ... January 19 - Held at the Eastern Nebraska Research and Extension Center
  10. Seed Share ... January 26 in Omaha
  11. Nebraska Insight ... Winter Edition
  12. Private Pesticide Applicator's Training ... March 7, 2019, meetings in Weeping Water, 9:00 am and 1:00 pm. For more information go to the UNL Pesticide website is: https://pested.unl.edu/
  13. Nebraska Statewide Arboretum’s Spring Affair ... April 27, Lincoln
  14. Nebraska Extension Publications ... online Library


Upcoming Statewide 4-H Events

Now Open - Registrations for Summer 4-H Camp

Jan 15 - N|150 Kick-Off Day

Jan 15 - Application period opens for Lockheed Martin STEM Scholarship

Jan 19 - FIRST LEGO League Qualifying Tournament

Jan 19 - FIRST LEGO League Jr Showcase

Jan 25-26 - State 4-H Indoor Archery Championships

Jan 26 - FIRST LEGO League Qualifying Tournament

Feb 13 - Open House for Power of Red Day at UNL

Feb 21-22 - Women in Agriculture

Jan 31 - Due date for anyone interested in being on the Nebraska 4-H Companion Animal Advisory committee.

Feb 1 - AKSARBEN Lamb Challenge Applications Due Online

Feb 2 - FIRST LEGO League Qualifying Tournament

Febr 16-24 - Cattlemen's Classic in Kearney, NE

March 1 - Deadline for Beekeeping Essay Competition

Mar 30 - Companion Animal Event at UNL

Mar 30 - Nebraska 4-H Horse Stampede

Apr 15 - Early bird registration due date for Summer 4-H Camp

July 8-12 - NAYI

Nebraska 4-H Event Calendar

Statewide Events and Opportunities


Nebraska Extension Cass County

Katie Kreuser, Extension Educator, Interim Unit Leader, katie.kreuser@unl.edu

Tracy Ensor, Extension Assistant, tracy.ensor@unl.edu

Sondra Buell, Office Manager, sondra.buell@unl.edu

General Mailbox, cass-county@unl.edu