Thurston County 4-H News

February 2016

Upcoming Dates

Feb 6 - Dakota-Thurston County Beef Weigh-In @ Pender Sale Barn (9:00-10:30)

Feb 8 - Joint 4-H Council Meeting @ Pender (7:00 pm)

Feb 15 - Office Closed - Presidents' Day

Feb 16 - 4-H Enrollment & Volunteer Screening DUE

Mar 4 - General 4-H Scholarship Applications DUE

Mar 7 - Butter Braid Sales Orders DUE @ Extension Office

Mar 12 - Horse Stampede @ UNL-East Campus

Mar 14 - Thurston County 4-H Council Meeting

Mar 22 - Butter Braids pick up @ Extension Office (5:00 pm)

Mar 28 - Speech/Music Contest Registration DUE

Mar 31 - Speech/Music Contest @ Pender (7:00 pm)

Apr 1-3 - Siouxland Garden Show @ Sioux City

Apr 10-16 - National Volunteer Week

Apr 11 - Joint 4-H Council Meeting @ Pender (7:00 pm)

Apr 15 - Nebraska 4-H Camp Early Bird Registration DUE

Apr 29 - Office Closed - Arbor Day

Need To Know

4-H Online Enrollment and Re-Enrollment - DUE FEBRUARY 16TH

Remember how last year we all had to learn something new when it came to enrolling for 4-H online? Guess what? This year nothing's changing and you're all going to be pros. There are step by step sheets at For both new families and families that already have profiles. If you already have a profile make sure you DO NOT make a new profile.

Ok there is one new thing. But it's just for VOLUNTEERS. If you are a volunteer for our program we also need to you enroll in our online database. The office manually put those of you from last year in the system so you have profiles. Again step by step information can be found at When you enroll as a volunteer everyone will need to send in a background check. Everyone in the North East District is being re-screened this year. Please remember to do this so that we may continue to have your help in our 4-H program.

If anyone of you has questions please call the office and we'll do our best to work through any issues.

If you have any problems or question you are more than welcome to call or set up an appointment to work on it at the office. (Even after hours if you let us know when would work best for you.) Your enrollments will be due online by February 16, 2016. Please look at your enrollment packets for more information.

Correspondence Preference

When filling out your enrollment form online please be sure to mark your correspondence preference so we know whether you want the newsletter and other information either emailed or directly mailed to you. Also if you would like to get text notifications about up coming deadlines and events, put in your cell phone number and carrier so we can contact you.

2016 Project Resource Central

The Nebraska 4-H Project Resource Central is available online. You can locate it at:

Curriculum changes to note:

  • New financial literacy curriculum
  • New career development curriculum
  • New landscape design curriculum
  • Revised entomology curriculum

As we continue to create more consistency across 4-Honline, the State Fair Book and Project Resource Central the following changes have been implemented.

  • Project level identifier changed to match 4-Honline
  • State Fair contests now listed
  • Additional clover kid projects listed

Butter Braid Sales

Thurston County 4-Hers will again have the opportunity to sell Butter Braids. What is a Butter Braid? A Butter Braid is a frozen pastry dough that you thaw, let rise, bake and frost. It is a mouth watering delicious homemade pastry.

Butter Braids are available in a variety of flavors. Thurston County 4-Hers will be taking orders from January 31 to March 7. Orders will be delivered to the 4-Hers on March 22 at 5:00 p.m. at the Thurston County Extension Office. Proceeds from this fundraiser help fund 4-H activities throughout the year.

Sales Incentive

The Thurston County 4-H Council voted to again provide you with an incentive to sell butter braids. We will have a drawing for two $50 gift cards to Target. To be eligible for the gift certificates, an individual/family must sell a minimum of 18 Butter Braids®, for every additional 5 sold they will have another entry in the drawing. Please understand there will only be two gift cards given out, so if you do it as a family you will share.

If your family chooses not to sell Butter Braids®, which is the only fundraiser we have for our 4-H program, we ask that you pay $50.00 per child. They will not be eligible for the gift card drawing. Remember this is just an incentive to encourage our 4-H’es to sell more Butter Braids. Selling any number of Butter Braids®, will benefit the Thurston County 4-H program.

Nebraska 4-H Month - 4-H Grows Here

Each year, the University of Nebraska–Lincoln 4-H Program observes two special time frames that provide an opportunity to share the 4-H message with those in our communities. National 4-H Week is held during the first full week of October, and Nebraska 4-H Month is held during the entire month of February. The theme this year is "4-H Grows Here." Show the world how you are growing in 4-H, right here in Thurston County.

Here are a 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" and ask all 4-H members to wear their 4-H t-shirts to school.
  • Give out packets of garden seeds with a note saying "4-H helps you grow!"
  • Put up a store window display during 4-H Week. Theme ideas might include: “4-H Plants the Seeds of the Future.”
  • Arrange for 4-H members to make 4-H promotional spots for local radio station.
  • Write a feature article for your local newspaper on your 4-H club and send it to the paper with a picture of your club.

Dakota-Thurston County Fair Theme 2016

The Dakota-Thurston County Fair board has shared with us this year's theme. "Sew It, Grow It, Show It." If you have an idea how to incorporate this into your fair experience let your club leaders know!

Member Information

Omaha Fashion Week 4-H Collection

Nebraska 4-H is once again partnering with Omaha Fashion Week during their Spring Showcase. OFW Student Night will take place onTuesday, March 15, 2016 and will exclusively feature high school designers, including a 4-H collection. This collection will consist of 10 garments from across the state and will be modeled by the 4-H member who made it

Speech and Music Contest

Please encourage your 4-Hers to prepare a speech and musical presentation this year. Registration deadline is March 28, with the contest being held March 31, 2016 at the United Church of Pender at 7:00 p.m. There will be more information in the next newsletter.

Ideas for Clover Colleges

Next year’s fair seems far away but we are already looking to see how we can help you accomplish the projects that you plan on completing. We are working on organizing our Clover College opportunities for 2014. Please share your ideas and possible resources with us. If you saw an exhibit at the fair this summer and think that it would be a great workshop topic, we are always open to suggestions!

Nebraska 4-H Club of the Month

Each month, a 4-H club will be chosen as the Nebraska 4-H Club of the Month. In order to be chosen, 4-H clubs must nominate themselves by application the second Friday of the month before. Each club chosen will receive a $50 cash card from the Nebraska 4-H Foundation along with a certificate that the club can display. The Club of the Month’s story will be featured on the Nebraska 4-H Foundation Facebook and Twitter pages, website, and blog. More information can be found at

2016 4-H Photography Nebraska Exhibit Theme

Nebraska Exhibit Print: Help us celebrate the national “4-H Grows Here” campaign. For both Unit II and Unit III will capture photos of people and places that illustrate 4-H growing and thriving in Nebraska! Your photos should tell a story about how “4-H Grows Here” in your local community. Please print and include the 4-H Grows Here! logo in your photos. The logo can be accessed at

Nebraska 4-H Shooting Sports Ambassador Program

The Nebraska 4-H Shooting Sports program is accepting applications now through February 11 for the new Nebraska 4-H Shooting Sports Ambassador Program. This program will be dedicated to leadership development in Nebraska 4-H Shooting Sports youth. Through an annual leadership seminar, participants will learn life skills, public speaking and communication skills, as well as quality leadership traits that can be applied to their 4-H projects and student career.

If you are over the age of 14 please contact the Extension Office for more information.

The main link to the application form is -


4-H Summer Camps

Attention youth! Are you ready for a fun adventure this summer? Consider joining youth around the state for an awesome adventure. The 4-H camps are open to everyone between the ages of 5-18 (do not have to be a 4-H member). There are over 40 day and night camping programs and trips offered for youth to enjoy at the three locations (Halsey, Gretna, and different destinations). Please contact the extension office for a camp brochure or visit the Nebraska 4-H Youth Development website at Register by April 15 and receive a 10% discount. Come make memories this summer at Nebraska 4-H Camps!!

Plant Science

2016 Siouxland Garden Show

Winter is in the air and we are wishing for warmer temperatures with gardening activities. Save the dates of April 1, 2, and 3, to attend the Siouxland Garden Show at the Sioux City Convention Center. The event includes regionally known experts teaching garden related topics. Commercial exhibitors will be promoting and selling flower, lawn and garden products. Master Gardeners will be available to answer garden questions. For more information, go to

Fifth Annual Innovative Youth Corn Challenge

Nebraska Extension and the Nebraska Corn Board are offering the fifth Innovative Youth Corn Challenge contest. This contest, open to 4-H members (age 10 & older as of Jan. 1st) or FFA members (in-school members), guides participants through all aspects of corn production, as well as agricultural careers related to corn production.

As a team, youth will be challenged to implement a production practice different than normal to determine if they increased their yield. Economics and sustainability of the practice will also be considered. Yields, cropping history, and production information will be collected in the Corn Yield Challenge management summary.

Cash prizes and plaques will be given to the first, second, and third place teams. First place will receive $1,000, second place will receive $500, and third place will receive $250. Sustainability, crop scouting and “extra mile” awards will also be given, each worth $200.

To participate in 2016, youth must complete and return an entry form by March 15th to the Fillmore County Extension Office in Geneva, NE. Forms can be downloaded at For more information, contact Brandy VanDeWalle, Aaron Nygren at or Amy Timmerman


Nebraska 4-H Foundation Scholarship 2016

There are several scholarships that a graduating 4-H member may consider. They are to relate their career plans and their most significant 4-H experience. Scholarships are due by March 4, 2016, to the Nebraska 4-H Foundation. More information is available at

NACEB Scholarship

The Nebraska Association of County Extension Boards (NACEB) Scholarship Program for the 2016/17 academic year includes the following:

  • One $1000 scholarship at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln College of Agricultural Sciences and Natural Resources (CASNR) or in the College of Education and Human Studies (CEHS) for an income student (freshmen or transfer student).
  • One $500 scholarship for a current student (sophomore or higher) enrolled in CASNR or CEHS.

All applications are due March 15, 2016. For more information, go to

Animal Science News

Big image

Beef Weigh-In

The Dakota-Thurston County Market Beef Weigh-In will be held onSaturday, February 6, 2016, from 9:00-10:30 a.m. at the Pender Livestock Sale Barn in Pender. This will be our only weigh-day. All 4-H members who plan to exhibt market beef (market steer or market heifer) will need to plan on bringing their project to weigh day to have it identified. For those planning to exhibit at State Fair or Ak-Sar-Ben will also need to have DNA taken (at cost of $6 per head) as well as use an EID ear tag ($2/head). The snow date for the weigh-in will be February 13th.

Poultry is BACK!

As of January 1, 2016, the Nebraska Department of Agriculture (NDA) has officially lifted the ban on poultry shows, fairs and exhibitions that was put in place to prevent the spread of highly pathogenic H5N2 avian influenza (HP AI) last year.

This is very exciting news for many of you and we will all be happy to see the poultry back in the barns this year. 2015 was also a very good educational tool on learning more about biosecurity measures with poultry and other livestock.

25th Annual Nebraska Cattlemen's Classic

The Nebraska Cattlemen's Classic will be held February 13-21 in Kearney at the Buffalo County Fairgrounds. For more information go to

The 2016 Nebraska Cattlemen's Classic Livestock Judging Contest will be held on Saturday, February 20th. This is a great learning opportunity for youth as they progress through their judging careers, and an exceptional “warm-up” for State Contests to be held later this year. The Cattlemen’s Classic is a huge supporter of everything youth related, especially judging and they have graciously funded over $5,000 in awards. We would highly encourage anyone and everyone to attend. There will be 8 classes of cattle and will split into two divisions. Juniors (ages 8-13) and Seniors (ages 14-19). These ages are as of January 1, 2016. You’re more than welcome to move a Junior contestant up to the Senior division to make a full team, if necessary.

4-H Horse Stampede

4-H Horse Stampede is being held the same date, March 12, 2016 at the Animal Science Complex on UNL’s East Campus. Entries are due to county offices on Feb. 12th. Contests include:

· Demonstrations (individual and team)

· Public speaking

· Quiz bowl

· Photography and art contests

More information available at:

Companion Animal Challenge

The second 4-H Companion Animal Challenge will be held on March 12, 2016 at the Animal Science Complex on UNL’s East Campus. It provides youth a chance to participate in a variety of contests that do not require animals, but allow youth to learn more about their dog or other companion animals. Entries are due Feb. 19th. Contests include:

· Demonstrations (a presentation where youth demonstrate how to complete a task or related to the care of their companion animal)

· Photography and art contests (open to all companion animal projects)

· Dog Skill-a-thon

· Dog quiz bowl

The youth who participated in the event last year said that it was fun and they learned a lot. Youth do not need to be experts to participate in the event.

More information available at:

Paws On 4-H Dog Workshop

A one day dog workshop held at the Greater Lincoln Obedience Club in Lincoln, NE on April 2 from 9AM – 3PM. This is a hands on workshop where youth can learn about training their dog and improve their dog knowledge. The flyer/registration form can be found here:

Canine Companions for Life 4-H Dog Expo

This event will be held at the Adams County Fairgrounds in Hastings, NE on Friday April 22 and Saturday April 23. Friday night includes a quiz bowl and fun activities related to dogs. Saturday youth will practice obedience, showmanship and agility in the show ring and have the opportunity to work with 4-H judges and leaders to improve their training and showing skills with their dog. Additional educational workshops will be offered throughout the day. For more information:

2016 Nebraska District 4-H Horse Shows

  • June 13 - Kearney
  • June 14 - Chadron
  • June 15 - McCook
  • June 16 - Leigh
  • June 17 - Bloomfield
  • June 21 - Lincoln

All entries are due to the county office by May 13, 2016. All Level testing required for participation in the 2016 District 4-H Horse Show MUST be completed by May 13, 2016.

All entries fro the State Horse Show much be mailed by May 13, 2016. These include Showmanship, Halter, All Cattle Classes, Hunter Hack, Dressage, Advanced Hunter Under Saddle, Hunt Seat Equitation, Western Pleasure and Horsemanship, Trail, 2 year old and 3 year old Western Pleasure and Working Ranch.

2016 Fonner Park State 4-H Horse Show July 10-14, 2016!

Big image
Big image