Thurston County 4-H News

September 2016

Upcoming Dates

Sept 5 - Office Closed - Labor Day

Sept 7 - State Fair Exhibits ready for pick up

Sept 12 - Joint 4-H Council Meeting @ Pender (7:00 pm)

Sept 19 - 4-H Career Portfolios DUE @ Extension Office

Sept 22-25 - AK-SAR-BEN, Omaha

Oct 2-8 - National 4-H Week

Oct 5 - National Youth Science Day

Oct 10 - Office Closed - Columbus Day

Oct 16 - Thurston County Achievement Banquet

Nov 11 - Office Closed - Veteran's Day

Nov 14 - Thurston County 4-H Council Meeting

Nov 24-25 - Office Closed - Thanksgiving Holiday

State Fair Info

State Fair Results

Take a look at how the youth of Thurston County represented 4-H at the Nebraska State Fair. Simply go to this link ( to see how everything turned out. And next year join us at the Nebraska State Fair in Grand Island.

Pick Up State Fair Exhibits

For those of you who represented Thurston County at the State Fair with your Static Exhibits. They are available at the Extension office after September 7th.

Member Information

Career Portfolios

It is time to get started on your career portfolio! Wouldn’t it be nice to start now before the sense of “panic” sets in. Now that fair is over and you have finished up projects for the state fair, jot down some notes about your goals, experiences, find those receipts so you can record the costs of your projects. Remember the career portfolios record keeping doesn’t require that you write a lengthy essay about your projects, just the main highlights. The portfolio has five sections to complete. They include the following:

Section 1: Project Accomplishments

Section 2: 4-H Leadership, Community Service, Volunteer, etc.

Section 3: Non 4-H Experiences

Section 4: 4-H Curriculum Story

Section 5: Support Materials

The career portfolio can be a valuable tool for 4-Hers as they prepare to graduate, apply for scholarships and enter the working world. Please call the extension office for assistance; we are available to help you with your Career Portfolio questions. We encourage everyone to complete their 4-H Career Portfolio. Deadline: Monday, September 19, due to the Extension Office.

Diamond Clover Program

Designed to encourage 4-H youth to engage in a variety of projects and activities that will enable members to acquire the life skills necessary to lead successful lives as competent, caring and contributing citizens. The program consists of six levels that require a 4-H member to plan and report a broad range of age-appropriate accomplishments. The program is designed to enable every 4-H member willing to exert the effort an opportunity to be recognized, regardless of how they are involved in 4-H. For more information and forms, please contact the office or visit the website at

Sample accomplishments include the following:

* Learn the 4-H Pledge, Motto, and Colors

* Attend at least 60% of club/project meetings

* Attend local 4-H activities or events (contest, county fair, camp, educational

program, state fair, etc.)

* Help with 4-H promotion

* Help with a club or community service-learning project

* Complete at least one 4-H project

* Complete your 4-H Career Portfolio

* Bring a friend to a 4-H meeting or activity

* Recruit a new 4-H member

* Serve as a 4-H officer, committee chair, or on 4-H Council

The forms are due the same time as the 4-H Career Portfolio. Forms are available online. We encourage everyone to fill one out. We are sure that everyone can get started on this recognition opportunity.

National 4-H Week

National 4-H Week will be October 2-8, 2016. Start brainstorming some ideas to increase our enrollment. Also consider adding a science experiment (Motion Commotion) to your October meeting to celebrate National 4-H Science Day on October 7th.

Here are few ideas to try this year to promote 4-H.

· Ask local businesses to put a message about 4-H on their sign.

· Designate a “4-H Day” during 4-H Week and ask all 4-H members to wear their 4-H t-shirts to school.

· Furnish cookies for 4-H Open House at a local business or in conjunction with a community activity. Make sure your 4-H club has a sign there so you get the publicity.

· Make 4-H bookmarks and distribute them to school and public libraries during 4-H Week.

· Plan an anniversary party for your club. Invite former members and leaders.

· Put a “Happy” ad in local papers during 4-H Week.

· Fly a 4-H flag in the town square.

· The ideas are endless.

Achievement Night

It is hard to believe that fall is right around the corner, which means we need to prepare for the achievement banquet. The banquet will potentially be held Sunday, October 16th from 6:00 to 8:00 p.m. at the Rosalie Town Hall. Watch future newsletters for updated information.

Join 4-H families for an evening of fellowship, food, recognition, and FUN! The Thurston County 4-H Council will be supplying meat for the meal. Families will need to bring two side dishes. Hope to see you for an evening of FUN and RECOGNITION!

Family & Consumer Sciences

Start Food Preservation Exhibits Now

Gardens are producing great bounties of vegetables and the fruit trees are loaded with great produce. Now is a great time to start your food preservation projects for 2017. Any canning that is processed after August 10, 2016 is eligible for exhibit at the 2017 County Fair. Make sure that you are using up-to-date USDA approved recipes for your canning. Members need to purchase a new canning book every 3 to 5 years. A great resource of approved recipes is the “Ball Blue Book Guide to Preserving”. These can be purchased at local hardware and grocery stores in the canning supply area or online for about $8.95. Another resource with a wealth of approved recipes is “So Easy to Preserve” from University of Georgia Extension. You can order by calling 706-542-8999.

2016 Make It With Wool Contest

Enter the Make It With Wool Contest! The object of the contest is to promote the beauty and versatility of wool fabric and yarn; to encourage personal creations in sewing, knitting, crocheting, spinning and weaving of wool fabric; and to recognize creative skills.

The 2016 State Make It With Wool Contest will be November 19 at the Dawson County Extension Office in Lexington NE beginning at 9:00 a.m. Public fashion show is at 1:00 p.m.

The divisions determined by age as of January 1, 2016 (national rule change), are as follows:

  • Preteen – age 12 and under
  • Junior – age 13 to 16
  • Senior – age 17 to 24
  • Adult – age 25 and over
  • Made For Others
For more information, contact the Nebraska State Director Alice Doane, 17705 Bluff Road, Waverly NE 68462 (phone 402-786-3555); Entry Coordinator Andrea Nisley, P.O. Box 757, Lexington NE 68850 (phone 308-324-5501)

Entry forms, fees, wool samples and wool testing fees are due October 15, 2016 to Entry Coordinator Andrea Nisley.

More information is available on the new National Make It With Wool website (

Animal Science

Husker Harvest Days

The annual Husker Harvest Days show will be held September 13, 14, & 15 at its permanent location west of Grand Island, NE (9000 W. Husker Highway, Wood River, NE 68883). Show Hours: Tuesday & Wednesday: 8-5, Thursday: 8-4. The show is recognized as the world's largest totally irrigated working farm show and features the most extensive state-of-the-art information and technology available for today's agricultural producers. Its field demonstrations and crop technology exhibits are geared to Nebraska and Western Corn Belt agriculture. For advanced tickets go

Nebraska Youth Pork Conference

Although a bit later than we anticipated, the online application is up and ready to go. Please direct interested youth to for an online application. The application deadline is Sept. 20, and youth will be notified of their acceptance no later than Sept. 30. The application does require a letter of recommendation that may originate from a 4H leader, extension educator, FFA advisor, etc.

Participants will evaluate market animals, grade carcasses, fabricate carcasses into wholesale and retail cuts, and exercise basic culinary methods on a variety of different pork products. Throughout the program, a conscientious effort will be made to highlight and discuss, within the context of other material, related industry and/or consumer issues. Additional lab activities to be incorporated in 2016, in response to the 2015 pilot evaluations, include a hands-on genetics lab, a food safety lab, and a biosecurity and animal health activity. Not only will youth learn about pork as a wholesome food product, but they will also learn how the pork industry is using science to address many significant challenges. Finally, various and engaging life skills activities will be intermixed throughout the program that focus on development of communication, leadership, and networking skills. Upon conclusion of this workshop, our youth will have a more thorough understanding of the product we produce, the consumers who purchase those products, and will have greater confidence in their ability to effectively communicate with one another regarding the many issues and challenges facing the pork industry.

Nebraska Youth Beef Leadership Symposium (NYBLS)

It’s that time of year again and we’ll be hosting the 13th annual Nebraska Youth Beef Leadership Symposium (NYBLS) here at the Animal Science Complex on December 2 - 4. Registration will be online this year and can be accessed via the NYBLS website below. Please note the application deadline of October 7th. We will be limiting both the freshman/sophomore and junior/senior groups to 30 participants each. If an individual is selected to participate, a $75 registration fee will be collected at that time. Please let me know if you have any questions and we hope to see your members in December!

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