Sheridan County Newsletter

January 2020

Calendar of Events

Jan. 1 – Office Closed

Jan. 7 – Extension Board Meeting at 6 pm

Jan. 9 – Gordon Clover Bud workshop at Gordon Elementary at 4:00 pm

Jan. 10 – Omaha Fashion Week 4-H student application due

Jan. 11 – Sidney Robotics Competition

Jan. 11 – Livestock Judging Intro Meeting, Western Sire services @ 10:00 am

Jan. 14 – Rushville Clover Bud workshop at Rushville Elementary at 3:30 pm

Jan. 16 – Hay Springs Clover Bud workshop at Hay Springs School at 4:00 pm

Jan. 17 – Hay Springs Baking Basics/Sewing at Hay Springs School at 9:00 am

Jan. 20 – Office Closed

Jan. 22 – Rushville Sewing workshop at Extension Office at 1:00 pm

Jan. 26 – Beef Weigh-in at Sheridan Livestock Auction from 1 to 3 pm

Jan. 26 – Panhandle Best Contest at Rushville Legion at 8 am

Important Announcements

Horse Level Clinic will be held on Saturday, March 21 at the Scotts Bluff Co Extension Office where youth will get all of the qualifications (written test, demo, feed chart, breeds paper) done during the day. They would just have to complete their riding test. All youth from around the panhandle are welcome to attend.

Baking Basics

The Hay Springs Baking Basics will be held on January 17th starting at 9:00 am and will go until 3:00 pm. The youth will also continue to work on their sewing projects. Participants will need to pack a lunch. The fee for this workshop is $10. Please register by January 10th by contacting the Sheridan Extension Office at (308) 327-2312. This event is open to anyone interested in baking and sewing projects.

Clover Bud Workshops

The Gordon Clover Bud workshop will be held on January 9th from 4:00 – 5:00 pm at the Gordon After School program. The Rushville Clover Bud workshop will be held on January 24th from 3:30 – 4:40 pm as part of the Rushville After School program. The Hay Springs Clover Bud workshop will be held on January 16th from 4:00 – 5:00 pm. Please register for the Hay Springs workshop with Erika Gaswick by December 12th.

Clover Bud members are youth between the ages of 5 and 7 as of January 1st, 2020. These youth will experience teamwork, social interaction, and decision-making skills while participating in hands on activities. Upon participation in these workshops, youth will have Clover Bud projects to display at the 2020 Sheridan County Fair.

Beef Weigh-in

If your youth is interested in participating in the Market Beef project at the 2020 Fair, they need to participate in a weigh-in. At the weigh-ins, youth will receive a 4-H ear tag along with being weighed. If they attend the Sheridan County weigh-in, the youth will be entered in the Sheridan County Fair Rate of Gain Contest. If the Market Beef animal is a steer they must weigh 1000 pounds at the weigh-in in July and heifers must weigh 900 pounds. The Sheridan County weigh-in will be held on January 26th from 1 to 3 pm at Sheridan Livestock Auction. If the 4-H member is not able to attend this weigh-in, they can attend the weigh-ins at Box Butte County or Dawes County. However, they will not be eligible for the Sheridan County Rate of Gain Contest. The Box Butte County weigh-in will be held on January 5th at the fairgrounds in Hemingford tentatively from 11 to 2pm and the Dawes County weigh-in is tentatively scheduled for February 8th at Crawford Livestock Auction from 9 to noon. If you are planning on attending another county’s weigh-in, please contact the Sheridan County office to ensure you have the required paperwork.


4-H Enrollment is now open!! You can enroll your youth at If you need help resetting your password, please contact the Extension Office. Youth need to be registered and pay the $5 dues, except Clover Buds, by June 1st. While enrolling youth have the opportunity to sign up for potential projects. They should select any of the projects they may potentially take to the 2020 Fair. Please let the Extension Office know if you have any questions or need help.

Shooting Sports Competition

The Panhandle Best Competitions are starting in January! The first shooting match will be held on Sunday, January 26th at the Rushville American Legion. Youth members will participate in BB Gun Shoot and Air Rifle Shoot. Members must have attended at least one shooting sports practice. Shooting sports practices are held on the first and third Mondays of the month at the Rushville American Legion.

The Sheridan County Shooting Sports members are also selling Little Caesar’s Pizza Kits to help raise money. You can contact a member, the Extension Office, Bruce Salisbury, or Donna Jech for ordering kits.

Sewing in Rushville

The Rushville Sewing workshop will be held on January 8th at the Extension Office from 1:00 – 4:00 pm. At this workshop youth will be able to continue working on their sewing projects or create new ones for a fair project. Please register by January 2nd by contacting the Sheridan Extension Office at (308) 327-2312.

Lego Competition

On January 11th the Sheridan County Robotics teams will be competing at the Sidney Regional Qualifier. This competition will consist of 25 teams competing to earn their right to attend the state event in February. The teams will be judged on their robotics design, their innovation project solution, how well they work together as a team on a given task, and the robotic mission game. During the mission game, teams have two and a half minutes to complete as many missions as possible by their pre-programmed robot. The contest is also looking for volunteers to assist with the competition. If you are interested in volunteering, please contact the Extension Office.

Omaha Fashion Week

Nebraska 4-H is once again partnering with Omaha Fashion Week during their Spring Showcase. OFW Student Night will take place on Tuesday, February 25, 2020 and will exclusively feature student designers, including a 4-H collection. This collection will consist of 10 to 12 garments from across the state. Each garment will be modeled by the 4-H member who made it. In order to create a complete and dynamic collection, interested 4-H members are invited to apply to participate in the show. Applications are due January 10th. Complete the following application form:

Youth for the Quality Care of Animals

Youth who are planning on participating in a livestock project at the 2020 Fair need to complete Youth for the Quality Care of Animals by June 1st. Livestock projects include Market Beef, Breeding Beef, Stocker Feeders, Bucket Calves, Market Hog, Rabbit, Poultry, Market Goat, Breeding Goat, Market Lamb, and Breeding Sheep. Families can register for an online training or in person training by visiting Families will utilize their 4-H online username and password. Youth can complete the online training after paying a $12 fee or register for an in person training after paying a $3 fee. Look for in person training dates in February.

Livestock Judging

Happy Holidays Sheridan County!

I would like to invite any interested county 4-H members to an information session regarding the county’s Livestock Judging program on Saturday January 11, 2020 at Western Sire Services starting at 10 am for a brief overview of the program and a beginner practice. During weigh-in on January 26th, we will be having an informal practice looking at the fair project’s for 2020 and working on descriptions and judging terminology.

A little about me - I was a member of my county’s livestock judging program in Lawrence County, Pennsylvania where I was able to gain hands-on knowledge not only about the evaluation of livestock but also about the livestock industry as a whole. After completing my youth judging career, I was a member of the Penn State University Livestock Judging team where I learned more about communication, time management, and the career options in the industry. I truly believe that livestock judging is an amazing opportunity for our youth that helps mold them into great stewards of livestock but even better individuals.

If your child is at all interested, please feel free to attend the information session or contact me with any questions. You can reach me at or 308-207-0613. I look forward to working with all of you! I hope you all have a Merry Christmas and best wishes for 2020!

~Shelby Dean

Statewide Youth Leadership Opportunity

The Nebraska Extension Leadership Youth Team is excited to announce a new opportunity for Nebraska High School Youth (Grades 9-12). We are searching for youth (possibly you!) to join us in planning a statewide Youth Leadership Conference for 2021. The purpose of this conference is to fulfill the following needs:

  • Opportunities for youth voice
  • Connection with UNL faculty and staff
  • Familiarization and comfort with the UNL campus
  • Leadership skill development and practice
  • State level opportunities for youth leadership

Our bold idea is to develop a state level leadership development program, a Nebraska Youth Leadership Conference, that is co-created by a team of youth. Would you be willing to serve on this team? This program will allow youth voice in our capitol by preparing young leaders to express the youth perspective on emerging issues. Youth will also develop and practice leadership skills that they will be able to take back and use in their own communities.

We would like to invite High School aged youth who are interested in helping plan this Youth Leadership Conference, to participate in a Zoom Meeting on January 2, 1:00 p.m. for more information and how to apply to be on the Youth Leadership Advisory Council which will help develop and implement this conference. Please contact Melissa Mracek to gain the zoom link for this meeting.

Special Garden Project

This project is open to all youth of 4-H age and it will give them the opportunity to learn about growing, harvesting, and exhibiting this unique flower. The Special Gardening Project lets 4-H members try their hand at growing unusual vegetables and flowers. The project allows experienced 4-H gardeners to grow something fun, new, and different while letting those new to gardening get their feet wet in this project area.

4-H members enrolled in the Special Garden Project will:

-Receive a ‘packet’ of Classic Magic Bachelor Buttons(one packet per youth) in March/April

-Receive a newsletter about:

  • Planting & growing bachelor buttons
  • Bachelor button problems & insects
  • Harvesting & using bachelor button

-Be able to exhibit this unique flower at County and State Fair
  • State Fair Special Garden Project Educational Exhibit Class G-775-001
  • State Fair Special Garden Project Fresh Cut Flowers or Harvested Vegetables G-775-002
  • Other fun county only ways to exhibit this unique flower like a story, poem, or poster.

Enroll for the 2020 Special Garden Project through 4-H Online and contact you’re the Nebraska Extension Sheridan County Office to order packets of seeds.

* Classic Magic Bachelor Buttons photo courtesy of Johnny’s Select Seeds,, 1-877-564-6697.

New 4-H Photography Showcase

The 4-H Photography Showcase offers a project exhibition opportunity beyond traditional print media. It is intended to help youth develop professional and technical skills as photographers while fostering creativity and encouraging self-expression. Through this opportunity,, youth are encouraged to practice and apply skills learned in their photography projects throughout the year.

How Does It Work?

Each month, a new photo will be selected from the online submissions. Selections will be made based on creativity, timeliness, technical execution, originality, and appropriateness. The selected photo will be showcased across the Nebraska 4-H social media channels, including Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter. Youth photographers will be credited wherever and whenever their photo is shared or published.

This opportunity is open to all enrolled 4-H members. Photo recommendations, file specifications, rules, and guidelines for participation are available online at

2020 Pick Your Project

The Pick Your Project, available at, has been updated for the 2020 program year.

To assist 4-H members, volunteers, and parents, with locating curriculum to support 4-H projects, two resources are available:

1) A new 4-H Projects page at

2) A Printable Project Listing at

Both of these resources can be publicly accessed at

Using the searchable, web-based 2020 Pick Your Project, users will be able to search for projects by keywords, curriculum areas, knowledge levels, and geographic levels. It is the intent that this feature will assist 4-H youth, volunteers and families with learning about the project opportunities using the Pick Your Project and then locating the same project in 4HOnline. Enhancements for the future of the web-based Pick Your Project continue, and its integration with the new 2020 Nebraska State Fairbook will be shared soon!