Sioux County Newsletter

November 2020

Calendar of Events

November 10th 4-H Council Meeting at 6 pm

November 11th Extension Office is closed

November 20th Reverse Canvas workshop at 2 pm

November 21st Shooting Sports Practices start

November 26th-27th Extension Office is closed

Achievement Banquet

The Achievement Banquet was held on Sunday, October 18th at the Harrison Fire Hall. During the event youth received their fair prizes, were awarded for their years in 4-H, as well as their Achievement Application awards. The 2019-2020 Clover Kid members were: Tilton Button, Ruger Pelster, Natalie Turbiville, Torri Neal, Gracyn Schaefer, and Dalton Chinn. Members participating in their first year of Sioux County 4-H were: Dalton Chinn, Kenna Lotton, Weston Schaefer, Ty Chinn, Gracyn Schaefer, and Jhett Skavdahl. As a part of their induction into the 4-H program they also received a 4-H t-shirt. Second year members included: Arley Ivy, Natalie Turbiville, and Ruger Pelster. Third year members recognized were: Chisum Pelster, Tilton Button, and Torri Neal. Fourth year members included Landen and Logen Oldaker. Fifth year members who were recognized are Boone Button, Sierra Eastman, and Tamika Eastman. The last year to be recognized was the sixth year members, which include Baxter Reece, Becca Reece, Jaime Turbiville, and Victoria Turbiville.

This year four members completed their Achievement Applications. Becca Reece was recognized in the Senior Division as the Outstanding Senior and received pins in Clothing and Textiles as well as Plants. Baxter Reece was awarded pins in the Junior Division for Leather and Aerospace. Boone Button received Junior pins for Beef, Horse, and Leather. Chisum Pelster was recognized as the Outstanding Junior Award as well as receiving pins in Beef, Horse, and Shooting Sports. There were also two Clover Kid members which completed their Record Books: Tilton Button and Ruger Pelster.

Diamond Clover awards are awards given based on the member’s goals they set for themselves to accomplish throughout the 4-H year. These awards are not tied to fair participation but more about learning the 4-H pledge, participating in a workshop, and more! Boone Button and Chisum Pelster both completed the Level 1 – Amethyst Clover. Tilton Button and Ruger Pelster completed the Diamond Bud Clover Kid level as well.

During the Achievement Banquet, time was also spent recognizing the wonderful Sioux County 4-H volunteers. Carmen Pelster was recognized for her two years of service and Katie Reece was recognized for eleven years of service. The Heart of the 4-H award was presented to Mike and Linda Kesselring. For several years, Mike has served as the famous Cookie Judge during fair. He also spends a great deal of time supporting 4-H on the radio. Linda was a huge help in the Extension Office last summer helping the staff prepare for County Fair and get reorganized! The Outstanding 4-H Alumni award was presented to Bill Riggs. No matter what the county is, Bill dedicates numerous hours throughout the year to help youth learn leather skills as well as others. Not only does he host workshops, serve on committees, but he also serves as a judge in multiple areas. This year during the County Fair, things had to be adapted for the COVID situation especially how food was prepared and delivered to the judges and families during the horse show. Syd with Harrison House Hotel graciously agreed to help provide these for the horse show, the art hall exhibit day, as well as the fashion show day. She went above and beyond creating delicious meals. The Harrison House Hotel was recognized as the Outstanding Business.

Shooting Sports Practices

The Shooting Sports season is starting!! Practices for those interested in participating in Shooting Sports as well as the Panhandle Best Competitions will start on Saturday, November 21st at 1 pm at the Harrison Fire Hall. Participants must be enrolled 4-H members that are at least eight years old prior to attending practices. Competitions for Panhandle Best will start in January. To enroll in 4-H visit ne.4honline.com. For more information about the Shooting Sports program contact Randy Ellis at

605-381-8373 or Laura Button at 308-665-5380.

4-H Enrollment

4-H enrollment for the 2020-2021 4-H year is now open. Youth can enroll by visiting ne.4honline.com. Members need to enroll prior to participating in Shooting Sports practices.

Reverse Canvas Workshop

Come join us for a Reverse Canvas workshop at the Security First Bank on November 20th starting at 2:00 pm. The workshop will finish by 4:00 pm. The youth will utilize a Cricut machine to design their own artwork to place on a canvas they have reversed. The fee for this workshop is $5. Please register by contacting the Extension Office at 308-668-2428 or Melissa Mracek at mmracek2@unl.edu by November 13th.

Diamond Clover – Level Up in 4-H

The Diamond Clover application is a great way for 4-H members to level up in their knowledge and participation of 4-H. 4-H members are encouraged to set goals for themselves to accomplish throughout the 4-H year and the Diamond Clover application is a great way to assist with that process. Youth can view the applications at https://4h.unl.edu/diamond-clover. These applications can be completed throughout the year and turned in next fall to be presented at the next Achievement Banquet.

Fed Steer Challenge

NE Fed Steer Challenge 2021 is now accepting applications! Applications due December 1st and are submitted via Qualtrics. The Nebraska 4-H Fed Steer Challenge is an opportunity for youth interested in learning more about the cattle industry and is designed to cultivate the next generation of leaders in the Nebraska cattle industry. The goal of the Fed Steer Challenge is to enhance the educational value of the traditional 4-H beef projects by providing an affordable option that rewards production merit and carcass value of the market animal, along with accurate and complete record-keeping, industry knowledge, and producer engagement by the 4-H member. To register visit: 4h.unl.edu/fed-steer-challenge.

Components of the Program include two parts:

  1. Raising a commercial steer
    • 4-H member selects and raises a commercial steer to finished market weight.
    • Utilize management and nutrition protocols similar to a commercial feedlot.
    • Maintain a detailed record book related to the management and feeding of the steer.
    • Exhibit steer in the 4-H Fed Steer Challenge class at the Nebraska State Fair where steers will be visually evaluated by a commercial cattle buyer representing a packer.
    • Sell cattle on a Quality and Yield Based Carcass Grid.
    • Following the live exhibition, steers will be transported to a commercial packer, harvested and carcass data collected.
  2. Evaluation of 4-H member's knowledge and interpersonal skills
    • Knowledge related to their project and the cattle industry as a whole
    • Accuracy and details related to a record book
    • Interview with representatives from the cattle industry

Youth interested in participating in the Nebraska 4-H Fed Steer Challenge must:

  • Be an enrolled 4-H member and at least 14 years of age as of December 31 of the year current year.
  • Have the financial ability to purchase a market steer at the current market price in January (~$850) and obtain insurance for the market value of the steer.
  • Source a steer on their own or select a steer from a pool of identified program producers.
  • Obtain an official starting weight for their steer at a county 4-H weigh-in event. If their enrolled county does not have an official weight-in, youth may attend the weigh-in of any county.
  • Provide adequate facilities and adhere to YQCA practices to ensure proper management and well-being of the animal.
  • Actively participate in online and face-to-face educational programming offered by Nebraska Animal Science faculty. Must participate in a minimum of 90% of educational opportunities offered between January and December.
  • Exhibit Steer in the Nebraska Fed Steer market steer class at the Nebraska State Fair. At that time, steers will be harvested at a commercial packer and participants will be paid based upon the current market value.
  • Maintain accurate production records related to raising the animal, complete the record book, and submit no later than October 15.
  • Develop and present a Project Showcase highlighting their project and knowledge gained to industry representatives.
  • Additional educational and networking opportunities may be identified throughout the year and youth should make every effort to fully participate.

National Western Stock Show Catch-a-Calf Program

The program is open to youth that are ages 12 to 18, as of December 31st, 2020. Youth must be an enrolled 4-H member and resident of the states of CO, WY, KS or NE. To apply for the program they will go to https://nationalwestern.com/catch-a-calf-program/ and complete the online application. There is also a mandatory form that they will need to print off and complete. The application must be submitted by December 1st.

Youth sign-up to catch at a rodeo performance during the Stock Show. Youth that are successful will then receive their steer in May. The purchase price of the steer is covered by a sponsor. Youth will write monthly letters to their sponsors. They will also complete a monthly progress form that then goes in their final record book. They will return to the Stock Show the following January to exhibit their steer, along with completing an interview and turning in their record book. The overall grand and reserve grand champion of the program are allotted a spot in the Junior Livestock Auction. Other youth will receive market value for their steer, along with a portion of what the two steers in the sale make.