Southern Plains 4-H

Serving Nuckolls and Thayer Counties - MAY 2020

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NEW Southern Plains Instagram account

We are now on Instagram to better reach our youth, parents and stakeholders! Follow us @spnebextension. We'll post workshop announcements, deadline reminders, event photos (when we have events again), and highlight our class of 2020 4-H seniors!

Brown Bag 4-H Projects Plan

Both offices are working hard to bring you hands-on programming! Please watch our social media accounts and check your email for details on how to sign up to pick up Brown Bag Projects. We will have projects for a variety of ages and interests, including a Bonanza Brown Bag!

County Public Speaking Contest is going VIRTUAL

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Speeches, PSAs, Presentation recordings due Tues. May 19 at 5 p.m.

There’s never been a better time to compete in the Thayer/Nuckolls County public speaking contest! Do you record hilarious TikTok videos or love to inform your parents and siblings about various 4-H and ag-related topics? You should submit a speech or PSA recording!

Do you have a favorite banana bread recipe you want to share or an innovative way to train your dog? Submit a presentation video! The 2020 virtual contest makes it easier than ever to practice public speaking because this year – there’s no public!

Nuckolls/Thayer will be hosting their 2020 Public Speaking Contest virtually. We want to make sure everyone has an equal chance of producing a quality speech/presentation/PSA, so the performances will be submitted instead of performed live. Speeches, PSAs, Presentation recordings must be submitted by Tuesday, May 19 at 5 p.m. Judging results will be announced Thursday, May 21, at noon via email and social media.

Categories, age divisions and rules can be found in the 2020 Fairbook starting on p. 24:

Steps to record and upload video recordings:

Record your speech using a phone, tablet, computer or video camera. File should be raw video with no editing. PSAs can have sound effects. Files should be saved in the MP3 or MP4 format.

Recording Tips:

· Use natural lighting.

· Shoot indoors (if possible) in a quiet area.

· Avoid direct sunlight.

· Avoid cluttered backgrounds

· Keep the recording device horizontal (not vertical) when shooting the video.

· Stabilize recording device (set it on a table, book, use tripod, etc.) so the shot is steady.

· Record 3-5 second before and after the 4-H’er begins speaking (if applicable)

· PSA can be recorded using any recording device or app but must be able to be uploaded digitally and should be in an MP3 or MP4 format.

· Files should be named with the following label: Contest_AgeDivision_First NameLast Name_County (i.e., Speech_Intermediate_StellaKinley_Nuckolls).

Note: Upload widgets are not optimized for mobile devices. We recommend using Chrome as your web browser. You cannot upload a folder; only file uploads are supported. The maximum length of the description field is 255 characters.

Submit speeches here:

Submit PSAs here:

Submit presentations here:

Drone Interest Survey

Southern Plains youth can feel the virtual wind under their virtual rotors with the RealFlight9 unmanned aerial systems (UAS) simulator the 4-H Councils purchased last fall. Now, Kylie is curious if enough interest in drone technology exists that we should purchase a toy drone to practice coding and flying (no remote pilot certification is necessary to fly a toy drone).

Please complete this survey to help her understand local interest by May 15:

Virtual Programming Only

Nebraska Extension will continue to provide only remote programming through June 15, 2020. Decisions beyond that timeframe will be made later. Livestock registration deadline will remain June 15, 2020.

Weigh In and Tagging Dates

For the rest of 2020, there should be no 4-H weigh-in or tagging in-person gatherings. These are non-essential functions, and families should not be put at risk.

4-H Camps

Given public distancing requirements, the decision was made to cancel scheduled 4-H camp sessions in June, and roll out a more rigorous July camping schedule that will involve two weeks in Gretna and three weeks in Halsey. Additionally, we will be hosting several virtual options in June including “Camp in a Box” and family activity boxes.

In addition to State 4-H Camps being affected, both Camp Venture and Camp Renegade are cancelled for 2020.

Quilts of Valor Awards

Currently, on the (QOVF) website, they have noted they will not begin awards of QOVs until 06/01/20. As conditions continue to change, we will make appropriate updates regarding recommended public health timelines.

PASE Update

Postponed to September 21 & 22.

State 4-H Speech Contest

Held virtually on June 24. In order to provide as much opportunity for equity statewide (even those with poor/no internet connection), the plan is for youth to submit videos that will be judged.

Great Plains Livestock Judging Circuit Update

UNL Livestock Judging has started an online livestock judging video series for our youth to access online. Each week they will add 1 to 3 classes to the series. That way, students will enjoy plenty of content. Youth can access these videos at or Once you get to the website, simply scroll down and you should see the link for the online video series which is located on YouTube.

As of now, the Great Plains Livestock Circuit is going to continue. With PASE moving to September, this will provide an opportunity for contests to be ran live at a later date or even in a virtual capacity. For a virtual contest to be counted in the circuit, it must include a reasons; that way scoring will be consistent. I would also like for these contests to still include at least 8 placing classes. Logan County (Colorado) held a contest virtually and those scores will still be included in the circuit. You can also access the schedule online at The schedule is constantly being updated.

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Clay, Fillmore, Nuckolls, and Thayer counties are hosting a “Pick A Project” Zoom workshop series to encourage local youth to practice their fair project prowess and to learn how to make (or at least get started on) projects for County Fair 2020. We encourage youth ages 8-18 to register for one or all four of the workshops. Even though COVID-19 disruptions have limited in-person programming, we’re excited to inspire 4-H members to practice experiential learning and learn to do new projects.

Register by visiting


CONGRATS to the Thayer County Creative Clovers!! They have earned a GOVERNOR'S AGRICULTURAL EXCELLENCE AWARD! The purpose of the Nebraska 4-H Foundation’s Governor’s Agricultural Excellence Awards is to recognize 4-H clubs for the work of the individuals in the club and the community service work of the entire club.

This club assembled, sewed, and donated veterans' pillowcases!! Super Job Creative Clovers!!! They will be honored at an award's ceremony and presented with a grant check at a later date.

We encourage everyone to apply for the 2021 awards highlighting ways and projects that will make a difference in your greater community. Applications will be available in the fall.

REMINDER: Volunteers, please enroll in 4-H online and complete DHHS screening

All direct volunteers for Nebraska 4-H need to enroll in 4-H online as a volunteer AND complete a DHHS background check.

14 out of 48 are 100% compliant for Nuckolls County

15 out of 64 are 100% compliant for Thayer County

Kylie sent out letters to volunteers who are not compliant three weeks ago. If you are unsure if you are compliant or if you can't find your letter, please email


In 2020, these will be the acceptable show shirts for Fair and Contest Events. ONLY THESE SHIRTS will be allowed. (Of course, as always, white button downs with the 4-H patch are always a sharp choice, and are fine)

The green shirt is limited to sizes available. We have adult small, adult large, and youth small.

The Grey Farm Bureau Shirts will be available, in the sizes listed in the link below. The cost is approx $9.00 per shirt. If you are new to 4-H, you are entitled to one Free shirt, just list your name on the order form and write FREE in the size you would like.

Place Order HERE, by June 1, 2020


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Nebraska 4-H Online Horticulture Judging Contest begins Friday, June 5

The Nebraska 4-H Online Horticulture Judging Contest provides youth an opportunity to test their knowledge of growing fruits, vegetables, flowers, and ornamental plants. The contest is open to all youth, as well as adults. Youth do not need to be enrolled 4-H members to participate. The contest will be available from 8:00 AM on Friday, June 5, 2020, through 8:00 AM on Monday, June 22, 2020.

Study materials and contest details are available here:

STUDENTS who participate can enter in Dept F, Division 500, Class 99 at the county level to earn credit/ribbon premiums for this contest.

Online 4-H Insect Identification Contest begins Friday, June 5

The Nebraska 4-H Online Insect Identification Contest provides an opportunity for participants to put their entomological knowledge to the test. The contest consists of insect identification and multiple-choice questions. Participants will gain knowledge about insects and entomology through this competition. This contest can serve as practice for county contests and the State Fair 4-H Insect Identification Contests.

The contest is open to all youth, as well as adults. Youth do not need to be enrolled 4-H members to participate. The contest will be available from Friday, June 5 through Friday, June 19, 2020.

Cultivate ACCESS Opportunity

Are you a high school sophomore or junior who wants to positively impact the world? We encourage you to apply for a special summer session of the Cultivate ACCESS community.

Cultivate ACCESS (Agriculture Career Communities to Empower Students in STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Math)) aims to increase participation of youth in STEM-related agricultural careers through a holistic mentoring and development program. We are currently accepting applications for the 2020 summer session of Cultivate ACCESS starting June 1st and running through August 7th.

As a Cultivate ACCESS scholar, you will be mentored by career professionals to help you explore your career interests. You will also connect with college student ambassadors for additional mentoring and to help you prepare for life after high school. As a Cultivate ACCESS scholar, you will gain valuable employability skills including leadership, teamwork and communication.

Visit for application instructions or contact us at for more information. Don’t delay – applications are due May 15th!

CWF 2022 Fundraising

Are you interested in/planning on attending the Southern Plains Citizenship Washington Focus (CWF) 2022 trip? We are currently waiting on some important details for the 2022 trip due to current COVID-19 disruptions and previous Nebraska 4-H CWF re-organization.

As a result, the Nuckolls and Thayer offices will not be facilitating any fundraisers in spring and summer 2020. 4-H members and their families are welcome to send payments to be deposited in the CWF account if they wish, and we encourage student-led and club-led fundraisers that can be inclusive to all CWF 2022 participants (for example, concession stand fundraisers are very much encouraged). We are currently listing $3000 per individual as the fundraising goal. As of May 1, it's encouraged to aim for $83 a month if you started saving in June 2019, and $125 a month if you are starting in May 2020.

If you have any questions, please ask Kylie -


If your name appears below, please claim your items, and help clean up my office! We are doing our level best to keep these items safe, but they need to go home! We will recycle or donate these items if they are not picked up by June 1.

Forgotten in the Food Stand, last fair season:

1 -Aluminum Pie Drip Pan

2 - Large Texas Sheet Cake Pans

Record Books:

Gausman Family, Harms Family, Chloe Hintz, Kniep Family

These were left behind from Achievement night, and you will be needing these soon.


Ethan Meerkatz

The 4-H Youth Development program abides with the nondiscrimination policies of the University of Nebraska-Lincoln and the United States Department of Agriculture.