Thurston County 4-H News

July 2019

Upcoming Dates

July 8- Thurston County 4-H Council Meeting

July 14-18 - State Horse Show @ Fonner Park, Grand Island

July 17 - ALL Dakota-Thurston County Pre-Fair Entries DUE

July 25 - 4-H Clothing Day Judging @ Emerson *DATE CHANGED*

July 27 - Pre-Fair Clean Up

July 28-30 - Pre-Fair Judging Shows

July 31-Aug 4 - Dakota-Thurston County Fair

Aug 5 - Post Fair Clean Up

Aug 10 - State Fair Animal and In Person Entries DUE

Aug 19 - State Fair Exhibits Due @ Extension Office (Noon)

Aug 20 - State Fair Horticulture Exhibits Due @ Extension Office (Noon)


Need to Know

Office Assistant Position

Our part-time Office Assistant position is open at the office, which may mean that there isn't always someone in the office as Jennifer & Stacey are often out programming. But please call, email, or text us if you need something urgently and to check if someone will be in the office.

If you know anyone who might be interested in this position, please send them our way.

"The Thurston County Extension Office will be accepting applications for part time (15 hrs/week) position as an office assistant. This position requires a person who is a self-starter, highly self-motivated and flexible. Qualifications are: customer service skills; a working knowledge of Microsoft Suite, Internet, and financial management; organizational and communication skills and a valid Nebraska driver’s license. Must pass a criminal background check and the 4-H volunteer screening. Additional information about this position can be found online at at or at the Extension Office. Cover letter, resume and references may be sent to Nebraska Extension in Thurston County, 415 Main Street, PO Box 665, Pender, NE 68047. For more information please contact Nebraska Extension Educator Jennifer Hansen at 402-385-6041. Thurston County is an Equal Opportunity Employer."

Busy Programming - Out of the Office

Seems that we are always busy. Either programming or more programming, so we might see the youth at some of our different events. To make sure we are in the office when you need us, we suggest calling or contacting us to make sure we will be around.

Days we know that we'll both be out of the office are:

  • July 10th AM
  • July 24th
  • July 25th PM
  • July 30th
  • Fair - July 31-Aug 4th

Flood Resources

For those of you effect by the resent flooding, UNL & Nebraska Extension have a variety of resources available at If you need assistance with an individual question or situation please reach out to our office for help. We are here to support you during this time.

4-H Foundation Announces Flood Relief Fund to Support Nebraska Families

The Nebraska 4-H Foundation has created a Flood Relief Fund to support children, youth and families impacted by the recent storms and floods.

There is another fund that may be of interest to your 4-H families and friends. The 4-H’ers Helping 4-H’ers Fund offers a giving opportunity to 4-H clubs and councils as well as individuals and businesses to support 4-H youth and families.

Information on both funds is available on the Nebraska 4-H Foundation website:

If you have questions or need additional information, please call or email Stu Shepherd at


Please save July 24th to come to the Haskell Ag Lab near Concord for our Family Field Day. The day will run from 9 am. to 3:30 pm. We will have four tracks with presentations: STEM for Teachers, STEM for Students, Ag Research/Econ, and new Feedlot Program and Tour (this will be starting at HAL in 2020). In addition, we will have four trailers with activities, Smokey Bear, a Farm Tour and an Arboretum Tour. As of now we also have 31 educational booths or vendors attending with activities and information for all ages. Please encourage your 4-H and FFA families and students to attend this event. A brochure and flyer will be coming soon.

Summer Info

Out of the Office

As many of you may know, Jennifer is currently on maternity leave as little Emily Mae was born on, July 2nd, 7lbs 15oz and 19 ins long. Congratulations to all the Hansen's! We will miss Jennifer at County Fair. But she will be back October 1st. So please bear with us as we figure out the summer with limited staff. If you have any questions or need anything know Stacey will be your point of contact for those three months.

Stacey is also recovering from heart surgery she had the end of May. And has been in and out of the hospital for the past couple weeks with complications with her heart. She's having surgery again August 7th (two days after fair!). Hopefully it fixes it this time, we've just got to manage until then.

Member Info

Club of the Month

Each month a 4-H club is chosen as the Nebraska 4-H Club of the Month by the Nebraska 4-H Foundation. In order to be chosen, 4-H clubs must nominate themselves by filling out the applications found at The club that is chosen as Club of the Month will be acknowledge for their achievements, service projects, and awards! Winners will receive a $50 check from the Nebraska 4-H Foundation and will be recognized statewide! Good luck!

N|150 Celebration - Flat Herbie Tour the Town

Flat Herbie is here to celebrate this milestone. Cut out Herbie and make him part of your community by taking him on a tour of your town. Snap a picture of him at local events, favorite landmarks, or 4-H activities. Upload the pictures to your social media channels with #N150Herbie or email us at We encourage everyone (students, faculty, staff, 4-H families, and alumni) to get in on the fun with Flat Herbie throughout 2019!

The first 12 individuals to participate and tag #thurston4h will receive a N|150 Lighted Bouncy Ball.

4-H Special Edition

Norfolk Daily News has produced a newspaper insert to be published during National 4-H week in October promoting 4-H. This will be the 44th edition. 4-H members and 4-H Alumni are invited to submit articles for the 2019 Edition. This year’s theme is “4-H Strong”.

The first deadline is August 14 to have their articles into the Norfolk Daily News.

Are you are a 4-H Alumni? Maybe this is the year you share one of your favorite memories of being in 4-H and how it made you strong or stronger! Or perhaps you have a volunteer who has not written for the 4-H Special Edition in the last 7 years who might want to write an article. 4-H members will be given priority to have their articles included in the 4-H Special Edition, however last year there was extra space for staff, alumni, leaders and parents to write articles. Consider having a youth write about an new project or a new event your 4-H program implemented in 2019.

County Fair

Late Entry Policies

The Dakota-Thurston 4-H County Fair has the following policy:

Late fair entries will be accepted for one week following the entry deadline and will be accessed a $10 late fee per individual for the Dakota-Thurston County Fair.

Fair Entry Information

Each family will be receiving a pack sometime toward the beginning of July that will have entry forms for the 2018 Dakota-Thurston County Fair. Once again this year we hope to personalize the forms so they contain most of the information the office needs. You just need to fill in class #s, animal ID's, etc. These forms will be DUE back to the office by July 17th.

Fair Movie Night

Saturday, August 3rd, 2019 inside the Exhibit Hall, starting at 9 PM. FREE for anyone. Parents: Please consider volunteering with this event. Help is needed chaperoning, serving popcorn and drinks. Enjoy a great movie with our youth and volunteer at the same time.

You can help decide what the movie will be on the 4-H movie night. Click on the link to submit your choice via the survey.

  • Dumbo
  • Wonder Park
  • Mary Poppins
  • Ralph Breaks the Internet
  • Lego Movie 2

Horse Level Testing

After much discussion the following requirements will be in place starting with the 2019 Dakota ~Thurston County Fair.

· The written (only) Level 1 test must be completed by the fair pre-entry deadline (July 17th) for all youth meeting the minimum equine intermediate age level of 12 as of January 1st of the current year.

· Written Level 1 test will be administered by either a certified Level 1 or 2 horse leader or by the local Extension Office. Testing appointments will be required by the Extension Office. Completed tests must be turned in to the Extension Office.

· If the written (only) Level 1 test has not been completed, intermediate age and up youth will not be allowed to participate in the Dakota~Thurston County 4-H Horse Show.

Animal Exhibits

Rabbit/Poultry Exhibitors - When you enter your animals Monday, July 29th, from 6:00 –8:00 we are asking that you check your animals in with either the superintendents or Extension Staff. We want to try and ensure that our show programs are accurate. Your assistance on this will be greatly appreciated. Thanks!

Bedding - The fair board will be possibly supplying bedding for livestock projects. It will be decided upon at the next Fair Board meeting. If you have special needs for your projects, it is your responsibility to bring the supplies. If you have any questions, please contact the Miranda Estochen @ 402-992-0992.

Stalling Horses - The Dakota~Thurston County Fairboard voted in 2010, That if a horse is showed, it must be stalled. No veterinarian excuses will be accepted. This applies to all horses exhibiting at the 4-H Horse Show, no expectations. Horses must be stalled at the fairgrounds on Thursday, August 1st by 8:00 p.m.

Livestock Check-in - Wednesday, July 31st from 6:30 - 8:30 pm is check-in day at the fair. Please check-in your animals at the respective livestock scale. This will help us to exhibitors and livestock that are on the fairgrounds and help with correct stall assignments and correct show programs. Reminder: Swine ear tags need to be purchased for $2.00 each at the time of check-in.

No early release of animals - Please refer to page 8 of the fair book for the following rule: All live animals, 4-H/FFA, Open Class (except cats, dogs, household pets/birds) will remain on the grounds for the duration of the fair. No early releases. Also see page 28 for the following statement from the Fair Board: Penalty– Premiums will be pulled for exhibits leaving the fairgrounds prior to the aforementioned release time.

Cat, Dog, & Ferret Exhibits - Don’t forget your cats, dogs, and ferrets must have current vaccinations. Forms are available on our website. (

Bucket Calves - Bucket calves need a record book with their entry. (

Clothing Day *DATE CHANGE*

Because of Haskell Ag Lab's "Science & Ag Family Field Day", we have changed Clothing Day for Fair to Thursday, July 25th. We hope you consider attending the field day and we'll see you on Thursday for our regular Clothing Day events.

Fair Grounds Clean-Up Days

Make sure you're on hand on Saturday, July 27th starting at 9 AM for the pre-fair clean-up. All 4-H members and families are encouraged to attend and help clean-up the hair grounds. Committee chairs should be there to get together all the stuff they'll need for their show and the projects that need completed. Brooms, rags, hammers, pliers, staple guns, and buckets, bring them along and plan on getting dirty. The fair board will be providing lunch at noon. Just as important is the post fair clean-up, on Monday, August 5th. Everything need to get put away, 9 am start.

Note: The Extension Staff needs heavy lifting help setting up the Exhibit Hall. Help is needed moving fixtures, chairs, tables, and more.

Dakota-Thurston County 4-H Fair Book Online

The 2019 edition of the Dakota-Thurston 4-H Fair Book is up ONLINE. Check it out to see what you want to bring to the fair this year!

Trophy Donors

Trophy donor letters have gone out! If you would like to support the Dakota-Thurston 4-H program or if you think of someone that should be asked, contact the Dakota County Extension Office. Trophies will be presented at the 2019 Dakota-Thurston County Fair at a cost of $20.00 awards please contact the Dakota County Extension Office.

Trophies add great incentive for our 4-H'ers to excel. Please remember at fair time and throughout the year that ribbons are awarded for the merit of the project and items such as trophies should be based on competition.

Dakota-Thurston County Fair Online Store

Welcome to the Dakota Thurston County Fair online store. This online store has been developed to simplify the fair gear ordering process for you. To get started, please select the appropriate sizes and quantities for the items below.

After the store closes all orders will be picked up by Lisa Bousquet and distributed accordingly.

Card transactions will appear as TUO or Team Uniform Orders on your card statement.

This store closes on Sunday, July 14th. at midnight. All Sales Final.

Please allow 2-3 weeks after the store closes for all orders to be fulfilled.

Late orders will be accepted until Tuesday, July. 16th. at noon. Orders submitted after the store closes will incur a $5.00 processing fee. Some late items may incur additional freight charges.

4-H’ers these are not suitable to use as show shirts (they are missing the clover)

Showing Dress Code *Changes*

17. 4-H Dress code - All exhibitors of livestock are required to wear a predominately white, black, or grey 4-H t-shirt (Extension Office approved) or plain white long sleeve shirt (button down with collar) no ruffles or fancy lace), and dark blue denim jeans. Exhibitors wearing plain white shirts must wear a 4-H armband. Exhibitors of large animals and/or horses are required to wear hard sole shoes. Dog exhibitors need to wear soft soled shoes. Horse exhibitors see equine section for specific dress code guidelines.

18. FFA Dress Code - FFA Shirt and dark blue denim jeans.

19. 4-H’ers participating in the Bonus Auction should adhere to Dress Code rules #17 & #18

Bonus Auction *Change*

The Bonus Auction Committee has removed Breeding Beef as an eligible exhibit for the Bonus Auction. Eligible exhibits are as follows:

  • Beef - Bucket Calf, Feeder Calf, Market Steer/Heifer
  • Swine - Market Gilt/Barrow
  • Sheep - Market Lamb
  • Goat - Market Goat
  • Rabbit - Champion from Meat classes - G961 - Classes 901, 902 & 903
  • Poultry - Champion Brioler from class G951-916

N|150 Stepping Stone Showcase

4-H members are invited to show their creativity and University of Nebraska pride by creating a stepping stone that represents the N|150 milestone. Stepping stones will be exhibited at local counties fairs, and one stepping stone from each county will be chosen to be displayed at the Nebraska State Fair at the Raising Nebraska landscape.

  • Stepping stones may be made out of any materials. Keep in mind that fairgoers may step on the stones while on display, therefore, they should be durable.
  • Stepping stones should be 8 inches by 8-inch squares.
  • Design: N|150 themed or In Our Grit, Our Glory themed
  • Each county will select one for display at Raising Nebraska. It will not be eligible to be judged in any other class at State Fair.

Photography Unit 3 Exhibit Print

4-H members enrolled in Mastering Photography Unit 3 are invited to celebrate N|150 by exhibiting in the Theme Print (Class B182060) at their local counties fairs. The top exhibit(s) from each county will be selected to advance to the Nebraska State Fair. February 15, 2019 marks 150 years of history to appreciate, impact to unpack, and stories to tell. How has the University of Nebraska impacted you, your family, or your community? How can you tell this story through photography?

County Project

Do you have 4-H ribbons stored in boxes, tucked away under beds or in the basement? Recycle those ribbons into something new that showcases all your hard work and achievements.

Create an item using 4-H ribbons or rosettes. Wall hanging, frames, quilts and more, check out Pinterest for lots of ideas. Use your imagination!

Item must be made of at least 50% ribbons, your choice for remainder of materials.

Enter project on entry day of the county fair. There is a category/class for county only projects


DEPARTMENT Q - Section 920

901. Recycled/Upycled 4-H Ribbons - Create an item using 4-H ribbons or rosettes. Examples, wall hanging, frames, quilts and more. Use your imagination. Item must be made of at least 50% ribbons, your choice for remainder of materials.

Dakota Thurston County Fair Activity Passes

This pass is a $30 value and is being sold for $15

The Pass includes 1 entry into each of the following events:

  • Tractor Pull
  • Dueling Pianos
  • Extreme Bull Riding

If you are interested in purchasing these passes, please contact the Fair Manager at

Fair Book Changes

Animal Science

An exhibitor (4-H or FFA) is limited to two market animals & two breeding heifers. Any combination of classes is allowed. *Change*

Market Beef - animals must be registered by the official breed association to be exhibited in breed classes

901.Angus Steers

902.Shorthorn Steers

903.Hereford Steers

904.Crossbred Steers

905.Angus Heifers

906.Shorthorn Heifers

907.Hereford Heifers

908.Crossbred Heifers

909.Club Pen of 3

Breeding Beef

901. Commercial Breed Heifers

902. Limousin Breed Heifers

903. LimFlex Breed Heifers

904. Maine-Anjou Breed Heifers

905. Maintainer Breed Heifers

906. Red Angus Breed Heifers

907. Shorthorn Breed Heifers

908. Shorthorn Plus Breed Heifers

909. Simmental Breed Heifers

910. Foundation Breed Heifers

911. AOB (All Other Breeds) Breed Heifers

912. Angus Breed Heifers

913. Charolais Breed Heifers

914. Composite Charolais Breed Heifers

915. Chianina Breed Heifers

916. Gelbvieh Breed Heifers

917. Balancer Breed Heifers

918. Hereford and Polled Hereford Breed Heifers


· The written (only) Level 1 test must be completed by the fair pre-entry deadline (mid-July) for all youth meeting the minimum equine intermediate age level of 12 as of January 1st of the current year.

· If the written (only) Level 1 test has not been completed, intermediate age and up youth will not be allowed to participate in the Dakota-Thurston County 4-H Horse Show.

· Written Level 1 test will be administered by either a certified Level 1 or 2 horse leader or by the local Extension Office. Testing appointments will be required by the Extension Office.

Information about what will be covered on this test can be found at

Fair Book Notices

Cow-Calf Project

No embryo transfer calves, as class is based upon genetic transfer from mother to offspring.

Feeder Calf

If one of your feeder calves is out of your Returning Cow (First Calf-Cow/Calf Pair), then you would be allowed to have 2 entries in either the Feeder Calf Steer class or Feeder Calf Heifer class.

Camping at the Fair

Interested in camping at the fair?

Contact Sherry Slaughter @ 402-863-2352

Mary Paeper @ 402-922-1299

Ray Sanderson @ 402-922-0247

These individuals can let you know the availability of camp sites and prices.

Family & Consumer Sciences

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Plant Science

Youth Crop Scouting Competition

Registration is now open for the Youth Crop Scouting Competition and limited to the first 9 teams who sign up!

This year, we will be asking that teams send in a $50 deposit payable to UNL; it is refundable if you attend the program to hold your spot.

Details about the program:

This contest will be held at the ARDC near Mead, Nebraska on July 23, 2019. The event will include both indoor and outdoor events. Teams of junior high and high school students (those completing 5-12th grades) from across Nebraska are invited to participate. This event is limited to the first ten teams who sign-up!

Clubs or other organizations may enter a team composed of three to five participants. An adult team leader must accompany each team of students. Team leaders could be FFA advisors, crop consultants, extension staff, coop employees, etc.

Top-scoring teams win prizes: $500 for first, $250 for second, $100 for third place. Top two teams will be eligible for regional competition in August at Iowa this year.

Teams will be expected to know the basics of scouting corn and soybean fields. This includes crop staging; looking for patterns of crop injury; disease, insect and weed seedling identification; etc. Other topics many include but are not limited to, pesticide safety, nutrient disorders, and herbicide injury.

More information about the crop scouting competition and instructions on how to register a team are available online at Register at

Teams must be registered by July 18. This program is sponsored by Nebraska Independent Crop Consultant Association, DuPont Pioneer, Farm Credit Services of America and Nebraska Extension.

Animal Science

2019 State Fair Livestock Identification Requirements

  1. Exhibitors will be required to enroll in 4-H and the required projects by the county deadline in 4H Online.
  2. Exhibitors showing market animals at State Fair must have a signed and sealed official DNA envelope with hair samples for DNA verification turned into their county office and have completed the online nomination ( along with submitting payment online by June 15. Any animal carrying an 840 EID tag will require the exhibitor to obtain a Premises ID. Contact the local Extension Office for details. (It is recommended that you make a copy or a photo image of completed envelope you turn into your county.)
  3. Exhibitors showing breeding beef, breeding sheep, breeding goats at State Fair will need to complete an online nomination along with submitting payment online ( by the June 15 deadline.
  4. Exhibitors will be required to complete Youth for the Quality Care of Animals (YQCA) for the enrolled livestock projects by the county deadline.
  5. Exhibitors will notify the County Extension Staff of any retags that may occur up to time of check-in at the State Fair.
  6. Exhibitors will select which animal nominations they have chosen to show at State Fair on the State Fair entry website. All nominated and validated animals will be automatically listed as a choice option for entry registration.
  7. Exhibitors will be required to bring the breed registration association paperwork to check-in at State Fair for animals wanting to show in a breed class. The exhibitors name should be identified on the registration paper.

Any questions go to:

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Nebraska Elite Showman Competition

The Nebraska Department of Agriculture along with the Rural Radio Network will be hosting the 13th Annual Elite Showman Competition on Saturday, September 1st at the Nebraska State Fair.

by popular demand we have added goat showmanship into the mix.

For more information:

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