Dakota County 4-H News

JUNE 2022

Nebraska Extension - Dakota County


Angela Abts—4-H & Youth aabts2@unl.edu

Julie Boyle—4-H and Youth julie.boyle@unl.edu

Tammy Dunn—Office Manager tpeterson3@unl.edu

Carol Larvick—Food & Nutrition clarvick1@unl.edu

Brenda Sale—SNAP-ED bsale@unl.edu

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Dates & Deadlines


6th - Extension Board meeting

6th - 4-H Council Meeting

6th - District Horse Show - Chadron

7th - District Horse Show - Guide Rock

8th - District Horse Show - Albion

9th - District Horse Show - Raymond

10th - District Horse Show - Kearney

15th - Apply to State Livestock recognition program (final report due 8/28)





23nd-23rd - Premier Animal Science event - UNL

24th - State Public Speaking Contest - UNL


4th - Office closed Independence Day

9th - 13th - Fonner Park State 4-H Horse Expo

20th - County Fair - Pre-entry deadline

30th - Fairgrounds Cleanup day

31st - August 7th - County Fair Week


Fairbook available online

The 2022 Dakota~Thurston County fairbook is now updated and online. You can view the book in it's entirety or as individual sections.

This link will take you to the page that has lots of information about the county fair.


It's Fairtime!

YQCA (Quality Assurance) training is due on June 15th Remember to submit the completion certificate to the Extension Office. https://yqcaprogram.org/

Our next deadline will be fair entries. Pre-entries are due July 20th . Packets will be going out in the mail around the 1st of July. Again this year entries will be completed online. Paper entry forms will be available, but the preferred method is online entry.

The Extension office will have a limited supply of printed fairbooks in the near future. Tammy will send out an email when they are available.

Keep working on those projects. Practice that showmanship routine, get your animals halter broke and used to being led, washed and brushed. Practice that cookie recipe., bake a pie with an older adult.

Horticulture/Floriculture, figure out the variety and cultivar of your plants, you’ll need that for fair. Every year this is an issue.

Read, read and re-read the fairbook. It is your best source of information (besides your favorite County Extension Staff).\

Pre-Fair Meeting - Intended for Fairboard members, Fair superintendents, 4-H organizational leaders and Extension Staff

The Dakota and Thurston County Fairboards would like to invite and encourage you to attend our joint Fairboard meeting on June 15th. The meeting will be held at 7:00 pm in the Expo Center at the Fairgrounds. The first item on the agenda will be to conduct a walk-around and compose a list of all potential maintenance and building issues that need to be addressed. At the meeting, fair details will be discussed. If you have any suggestions or ideas about the fair, please plan to attend. Your input and opinions are important to us.

Livestock Affidavit/ID Sheets

Livestock Affidavits or ID sheets are due JUNE 15th for all beef, sheep, goat, swine, horse and rabbit projects.


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Dakota~Thurston County Fair August 3rd - 7th

Want some great gear to show your love for our very own Dakota~Thurston County Fair?

Check out the Dakota~Thurston County Fair Shop for t-shirts, hoodies, full zips and hats.

The online store will be open until JULY 10th, 2022. All orders will only be available for pick up at the Fair Office on clean-up day (July 3oth) and throughout fair week. Get your orders in early! These clothing items are not acceptable for 4-H shows.



Each enrolled 4-H youth will be receiving an activity wristband. The wristband is good for admittance to:

· Tractor Pull

· Extreme Bull Riding

(Ryan Hurd tickets not included)

The Dakota County Extension Office is also helping the Fair sell additional activity passes for $10.00 ($20.00 Value)

FAIR CLEAN-UP DAY - Mark you calendars, and be prepared to help clean-up the fairgrounds on July 30th. Start time is 9:00, lunch is provided. Wear closed toes shoes and plan on getting dirty! We hope to have a list of jobs, prior to clean-up day.

Final date to enroll in 4-H and able to Participate in county or State Fair is June 15th. If you have new members interested in joining there is still time. https://ne.4honline.com

It's UnFAIRgettable

The Dakota~Thurston County fair dates are July 31st through August 8th (this includes all 4-H events). Your Fairboard is working hard to plan a great event for 4-H'ers and the community. Remember to thank these great people who are volunteering their time and efforts to plan this community event.

The big news is the concert featuring Ryan Hurd with opening act Dane Lewis.

Visit the Dakota~Thurston County fair website for details.


Animal Care & Fitting Clinic

There will be an animal care and fitting clinic held on June 8th, 2022 at the Dakota County Fairgrounds.

Animal classes will include: Beef, Sheep, Chickens, Swine, Goats and Rabbits. The Dakota County Agricultural Society and other sponsors are hosting this event from 5:30 - 7:30 PM . A meal will be provided.

For more information call: 712-389-5566

Trophy Donors Needed

Have someone new who might like to donate and support our 4-Hers? Have them contact the Dakota County Extension Office.

Trophies will be presented at the 2022 Dakota-Thurston County Fair at a cost of $25.00 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.

Late Affidavit & Late Entry Policies

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

1) Late animal affidavits will be accepted for one following the entry deadline and will be accessed a

$10 late fee per individual for the Dakota-Thurston County Fair.

2) 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.

These do not apply to any State Fair submissions! State Fair deadlines are hard and firm!

YQCA - Youth for the Quality Care of Animals

Nebraska 4-H requires all youth enrolled in livestock projects to complete annual quality assurance certification through Youth for the Quality Care of Animals (YQCA). YQCA is a national multi-species quality assurance program focused on three core pillars: food safety, animal well-being, and character development.


YQCA certification is required for all 4-H members enrolled in any of the following projects:

  • Beef (bucket calf, feeder calf, breeding beef, market beef)
  • Dairy Cattle
  • Goat (breeding meat goat, dairy goat, meat goat)
  • Poultry
  • Rabbit
  • Sheep (breeding sheep, market sheep)
  • Swine (breeding swine, market swine)

Annual Training

Nebraska 4-H members ages 8-18, who are enrolled in any of the livestock projects listed above are required to participate in an annual YQCA training. Annual training requirements may be satisfied by completing either an online web-based training course or a face-to-face instructor-led training course.

Web-Based Training

Web-based annual training is available through the YQCA learning management system. The online YQCA course costs $12 per individual regardless of age.

Each session purchased includes three modules - a knowledge builder, a skills lab, and a quiz. The knowledge builder is where content is delivered. The skills lab provides an opportunity to apply the content. The quiz test knowledge. To receive certification, 80% must be achieved on the 10-question quiz. These modules, completed in their entirety, will provide 2-3 hours of experience. Features of the online modules include:

  • Characters at each age level to guide youth through the course.
  • Free navigation within the course so youth can spend as much or as little time on a particular topic based on their personal needs.
  • Variety of learning opportunities to accommodate various learning styles and modalities.
  • Audio button on each slide so youth can listen to audio rather than read the on-screen text.
Information was sent to youth that need the training.

Livestock Exhibits

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.

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 Wednesday, August 3rd,between 5:30 - 8:00 p.m.

Livestock Check-in - Wednesday, August 3rd from 5:30 - 8:00 pm is check-in day at the fair. All animals are checked in on Wednesday, August 3rd, including rabbits and poultry.

Rabbit/Poultry Exhibitors - When you enter your animals 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!

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 $3.00 each at the time of check-in.

No early release of animals - Please refer to 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 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. https://extension.unl.edu/statewide/dakota/cat-dog-companion-animal/

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



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Camps & Workshops

Are you interested in learning more about the Dog project, want to participate in horse show or attend a fitting clinic?

The Dakota County website has a place you can find out about these.

As the office gets information about different events it is posted on our website. (It will be current soon!)


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Online Horticulture Contest

Do you know what it takes to pick the best fruit and vegetables out at the grocery store? Or do you know what judges are looking for when they judge your plants at the county fair? Have you ever wondered, what plant is that!?! We are excited to offer the opportunity to learn these and other important horticulture skills through the Online Horticulture Contest. The contest will be available June 3-20, 2022 at: https://go.unl.edu/online4hhortcontest

Horticulture judging contest consists of three parts. The first is identification of plant material. Participants identify the plants by common name from a plant list. Specimens may be alive or preserved plant parts like stems, twigs, leaves, flowers, seeds, fruits, roots, bulbs, tubers, or plant products.

The second is a knowledge portion, usually in the form of a true/false or multiple choice quiz. Questions will test the contestant's knowledge of cultural practices for horticultural crops, plant science, pesticides, horticultural careers and other topics related to the production, processing and consumption of horticultural crops.

The last portion is judging or placings. This is where four different plants, plates of vegetables, or containers flowers are ranked from best to worst based on a set of criteria. Classes are judged on the basis of condition, quality, uniformity, true-to-type, and size.

More details at: https://4h.unl.edu/online-horticulture-judging-contest

More information about the Nebraska State contest can be found in the Fairbook https://4hfairbook.unl.edu/fairbookview.php/contests/45 .

Updated 4-H State Dog Show Rule Book

The 4-H State Dog Show rule book has some changes for 2022.

Rulebook can also be found at: https://4hfairbook.unl.edu/fairbookview.php/animals/4 along with updated score sheets!!

Tractor Safety Training

2022 Teen Tractor Safety Courses - Nebraska Extension and Central States Center for Agricultural Safety and Health at the University of Nebraska Medical Center, College of Public Health, have announced plans for the annual "tractor safety" training courses scheduled at 6 sites across Nebraska in late May and early June. Students will complete the first day of the course either by attending a hands-on event at one of two locations or online through the eXtension Foundation Campus website. The hands-on events will take place May 24th in North Platte, and May 26th, in Grand Island. After successfully completing the hands-on event or the online course, and testing the required driving test will be offered at six locations acorss Nebraska May 25th, through June 10th, 2022.

Teens 14 or 15 years of age who work on farms, or others who are interested in learning about safe farming practices, are encouraged to register for the certification course. Students under age 14 are not eligible for certification but the hands-on events are open to everyone in the community. Children under 14 years of age must be accompanied by an adult.

Federal law prohibits children under 16 years of age from using certain equipment on a farm unless their parents or legal guardians own the farm. However, certification received through the course grants an exemption to the law allowing 14- and 15-year-olds to drive a tractor and to do field work with certain mechanized equipment. Flyer

Livestock Information Series

The Nebraska 4-H Livestock Information Series is a resource for 4-H members, leaders, and parents to gain knowledge in various livestock-related topic areas. Each session, a new topic is covered with experts joining to share their experience and expertise. Extended learning opportunities and supporting documents are also available for each topic.


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Nebraska Extension is a Division of the Institute of Agriculture and Natural Resources at the University of Nebraska–Lincoln cooperating with the Counties and the United States Department of Agriculture. The 4-H Youth Development program abides with the nondiscrimination policies of the University of Nebraska–Lincoln and the United States Department of Agriculture.