Southern Plains 4-H

Serving Nuckolls and Thayer Counties - JANUARY 2020

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Please go to to register for the 2019-2020 4-H Year.

We need to get started with ideas for the upcoming year. Members should be enrolled prior to signing up for workshops, participating in shooting sports, or attending 4-H events. Please do not wait until the last minute! (Project changes may be added or deleted until April 1) Many times you must be signed up through 4-H online to register for other events like YQCA.

Signing up now will help us make plans for the upcoming year.


Thayer County Fair will be August 6-9 @ Deshler Fairgrounds

Nuckolls County Fair will be July 11-15 @ Nelson Fairgrounds


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Date: Mon. January 13, 2020

Time: 6:30 pm

Place: Thayer County Extension Office, Clubroom

Bring: A friend and your parents

Plans are already rolling for the 2022 Citizenship Washington Focus Trip. Any 4-Her who is 14 to 18 years of age in the 2022 year is eligible. Bring a friend who isn't a 4-Her! This will be an informational meeting to answer questions, extend ideas, and gather input for the trip. Kylie will be there to field your questions, get you signed up, and let you know about the fund raising opportunities, costs, expectations, etc. You can meet the kids who are also interested in the trip, and start building ties them. This is the trip of a lifetime. Even if you haven't decided for sure, come get the facts!

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Take your beef to neighboring county weigh in:

Fillmore County - Sat. January 18; 8-10:30 a.m.

Clay County - Feb 8; 9-11:00 am @ Sutton Vet Clinic

Webster County - January 26; 2-4 pm @ Red Cloud Animal Health Center

Saline County - January 18; 8:30-11:00 a.m. @ Weber Feedyards, Dorchester


DATE: February 7-9, 2020

WHAT: National Training, Valuable Water Challenge

PLACE: Ames, Iowa

We are now accepting applications for 3 teens to serve on the State Training Team. Last year, Southern Plains was fortunate enough to have Paige Kniep selected to train on last year's topic of Native Bees. Youth interested in applying for this opportunity should complete the application at the link below. Application period extended and applications are still be accepted, but contact us ASAP!

Ag Innovators Application Link


Personal Emergency Preparedness Workshop

Date: February 3, 2020

Time: Afterschool

Place: ClubRoom, Thayer County Extension

Cost: $12.00

Must Pre-Register by: January 22

Come join us while we make and assemble a small Personal Emergency Preparedness Kit with Colt Farringer (Thayer County Emergency Manager) Colt will teach us what we need to survive during a disaster, and help us create detailed emergency response plans.

Build a Robot With Your Buddy!

Date: Feb 20, 2020

Place: Thayer County Extension Office

Time: Afterschool

Cost: $45.00

Pre-Register and Pay a Must By: February 7

You will need: Your own computer, for programming


Are you into Robotics??? Here is your chance to build a Meccano Programable Robot. We will order kits according to the number we have at the end of Pre-Registration, so you MUST register by Feb. 7. Bringing a parent, grandparent, or supervisor (ie TeamMate, or mentor) is strongly suggested. This would be a great team activity.

Container Gardening with Herbs

Date: March 2, 2020

Place: Thayer County Extension Office

Time: Afterschool

Cost: $20.00

Pre- Register and Pay By: February 21

You will NEED to Bring: Your choice of Container. Container should be suitable for placement of 5 Herbs. (ie. Clay Azalea Pot, Small "whiskey barrel" type, wooden basket/box or something similar). Your pot can be any media, but drainage is needed. Don't forget the watering saucer for home, but you don't need to bring the saucer to class. You should be able to carry it easily.

We will be planting an "Italian Herb Garden" and labeling the herbs with plant markers. Participants will also make an herb drying station, discuss preservation techniques, and brainstorm ways to cook with herbs.


2020 Great Plains Livestock Judging Circuit

Local dates are listed below (17 dates in all)

DATES CLOSE TO US: Sat. May 2, Nelson (Southern Plains 4-H is hosting); Thurs. June 4, Bladen; Sat. June 6, Holdredge

Circuit Schedule

Circuit Rules

Thayer County is hosting the Area 1 Range Judging Contest

DATE: September 23, 2020

PLACE: Thayer County

Thayer County has been selected as the 2020 site! We will be partnering with Little Blue NRD and the NRCS in Hebron to host this event. If you would like to volunteer at this event, let us know!

Nebraska Cattlemen's Classic Beef Judging Contest

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2020 Nebraska District & State Horse Show

DUE: May 8, 2020

ALL Level Testing required for participation MUST be COMPLETED!


June 15, Scottsbluff

June 16, Burwell

June 17, Columbus

June 18, Lincoln

June 19, McCook

STATE DATE & SITE, for 2020

July 15-19, Fonner Park, Grand Island

Companion Animal Challenge Contest Mar. 28, 2020

The Companion Animal Challenge is a set of contests for youth interested in companion animals. These contests are animal-less and test youths knowledge about companion animals. New this year to the contest are a Cat Skillathon and an essay contest. 4-H youth ages 10-18 are invited to participate.

  • The 4-H Companion Animal Challenge will be held on Saturday, March 28, 2020 at the Animal Science Complex.
  • Contests include: Demonstration Contest, Dog Skillathon Contest, Cat Skillathon Contest, Essay Contest, Art Contest, and Photography Contest.
  • This event allows youth to apply their companion animal knowledge, but does not require them to have an animal!
  • It will be held the same day as the 4-H Horse Stampede so that youth can compete in both events if they choose. We will ensure there are not schedule conflicts.

Horse Stampede Contest Mar. 28, 2020

The horse stampede is a group of contests for youth interested in horses. These contests do not require youth to have a horse all they need is to have an interest and be willing to learn some information about horses.

  • The 4-H Horse Stampede will be held on Saturday, March 28, 2020 at the Animal Science Complex. Registration starts at 8:30am.
  • Contests include: Individual Demonstration Contest (can be done in person or through zoom), Team Demonstration (can be done in person or through zoom), Speech (can be done in person or through zoom), Junior or Senior Horse Bowl (team quiz bowl contest), Art Contest (do not need to be present to participate, you can mail in the entries), and Photography Contest (do not need to be present to participate, you can mail in the entries).
  • It will be held the same day as the 4-H Companion Animal Challenge so that youth can compete in both events if they choose. We will ensure there are not schedule conflicts.
  • Entries are due by March 6, 2020.

PASE/Life Challenge

Kylie is very interested in growing Nuckolls/Thayer involvement in PASE. Mark your calendars for the 2020 PASE/Life Challenge event on June 22 & 23 in Lincoln on UNL's East Campus, and let her know if you or your 4-H member is interested in coaching/participating.



DATE: Sat. March 14, 2020

PLACE: UNL- Animal Science Dept, Lincoln

TIME: 8 am to 3 pm

This sounds FUN! Egg Decorating, Poultry Quiz Bowl, Photography Contest, Omelet Cookery Contest, Speech Contest, and all about Chickens!

Get information on event here


Mark you calendars for May 27, 28 - 2020 for the NCTA Livestock Judging Contest, and Youth Animal Science Day in Curtis.


2020 Horse Judging School - Sat. Mar. 7

This school is for horse show judges, aspiring judges, judging team coaches, and youth! We will have classroom demonstrations as well as live classes to judge.

  • This clinic will be held Saturday March 7th, 2020 at the UNL Animal Science Complex
  • Topics include: Western Pleasure, Western Horsemanship, and Speed Events
  • Presenters: Dr Kathy Anderson, Dr. Lena Luck, and Brooke Parrish

4-H Youth 3 & 4 Advancement Level Workshop - Sun. Mar. 8

This Advancement Level Workshop is geared towards 4-Hers that have passed their Level 2 and want to move on to levels 3 & 4. During the workshop we will help youth prepare their feed chart, health chart and learn how to work with their horse to prepare for performing advanced maneuvers required to pass their level 3 and/or 4.

4-H Adult/Leader Advancement Level Workshop - Sun. March 8

This Advancement Level Workshop is geared towards helping Adults, Extension personnel, Volunteers, and leaders have a better understanding and knowledge to work with the youth in their area to pass their advancement levels.

INTERESTED in any of these horse workshops? Register at the web site below:


DATE: June 9-10, 2020

PLACE: Geneva Fairgrounds

Youth aged 14 and 15 and working on a farm or ranch other than their own MUST by certified through a Hazardous Occupations Course. Successful completion of the course will allow trained youth to operate a tractor over 20 horsepower, or to connect or disconnect an implement or any of its parts to or from a tractor. Save the date! More information to follow.

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