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Agri-Science Summit: A National 4-H Opportunity

Youth separating cheese curds

Participants cutting cheese curds at the 2019 Agri-Science Youth Summit, National 4-H Convention Center. Photo credit: Marie Arick

Are you interested in an in-depth exploration focused on agriculture, animal sciences, and wildlife biology?  The National Youth Agri-Science Summit is an experience for teens in 9-12 grade where you’ll explore different agricultural aspects through hands-on workshops and activities.  Held January 9-12, 2020, you’ll travel to the National 4-H Conference Center just outside of Washington, DC, for the event.

Ted McKinney, Under Secretary of Agriculture for Trade and Foreign Agriculture Affairs, US Department of Agriculture, will kick off the event.  Also featured is a Career Fair panel that includes Park Rangers, Community Garden Specialists, Veterinarians, and various University Extension personnel. A small sample of session titles are:

  • The Magic of Digestion
  • Teens Teach Environmental Science
  • Exploring Dairy Science Say Cheese
  • Entomophagy: Food for the Future.

The experience wouldn’t be complete without being treated to trips into Washington DC – a trip to the Smithsonian and an evening tour of the National Mall.

This opportunity for teens in grades 9-12 will be held at the National 4-H Conference Center in Chevy Chase, Maryland. The youth participant cost begins at $610 per participant. Chaperone costs begin at $725. These costs cover all materials, activities, lodging, and meals. Other travel costs should also be considered. If you are interested in attending this event, contact your 4-H Agent.

4-H Chick Chain Project Coming to a Close

4-H Chick Chain Project Coming to a Close

girl holding a chicken

Learning responsibility is just one of the many skills learned through  4-H Chick Chain.

Since March, 4-Hers have watched their chicks grow day by day into pullets.  Spanning six months, the 4-H Chick Chain project teaches youth how to care for growing chickens.  They’ve learned all about nutrition, housing needs, and disease management along with showmanship preparation and practices.  Youth kept project books of their experiences, taking note of expenses, and breed information.  Youth who participated in the past 2018 project have continued to care for their chickens who are now laying eggs and providing a food source for their family.

On September 28th, youth will participate in the 2019 4-H Chick Chain Show.  For 2019 projects, youth will exhibit two of their best project pullets (a pullet is less than one year old at laying age), participate in showmanship to show off their handling skills, and enjoy a skill-a-thon to show what information and knowledge they’ve learned during the year.  For 2018 projects, those youth will bring their two best layers which are now in peak egg production.

youth display their awards

Best of Breed winners from the 2018 4-H Chick Chain

2019 4-H Chick Chain Show Details

For youth participating in the 2019 4-H Chick Chain Show, remember to register through your 4HOnline profile by midnight, September 13th.  Your project book and photography entries are also due to your 4-H agent that day.

Youth will earn awards in skill-a-thon and showmanship. Awards will be given to best of breed and overall champions will be named.

Here’s a timeline of events for the 2019 4-H Chick Show:
Saturday, September 28, 2019
Washington County Ag Center – 1424 Jackson Ave, Chipley, FL – check-in on the west end of the building.

  • If your flock is NPIP certified, bring your card to check-in
  • 8-8:30 am – District II Check-in (Walton, Washington)
  • 9-9:30 am – District III Check-in (Leon, Liberty, Jefferson, Wakulla, Franklin, Gadsden)
  • 10-10:30 am – District I Check-in (Escambia, Okaloosa, Santa Rosa)

As soon as birds are checked-in, youth will participate in showmanship and skill-a-thon with awards tentatively scheduled for 12 pm.


Welcome to the 2019-2020 4-H Year!

Welcome to the 2019-2020 4-H Year!

4-H officer campaign sign

Get involved as a 4-H officer!

August is an exciting time of year.  Shopping for school supplies, meeting new teachers, seeing old friends, making new ones AND getting ready for the 2019-2020 4-H Year.  Your 4-H agents and club leaders are ready to kick off the year with new clubs, returning clubs, and opportunities to make this a fun and educational year.

Here are some things to do now for the new 4-H Year:

Youth displaying a trophy they won

Show what you’ve learned through 4-H competitive events.

Upcoming NW 4-H District dates:  

  • August 20 – Re-enroll or enroll in your county 4-H program @
    Need a paper enrollment instead?
    Paper forms are available for families without internet access:
    Enrollment Form
    Participation Form
    Spanish Forms
    Update your contact information, clubs & projects
    • Pay the $20 Florida 4-H Membership Fee
      You’ll get an email after enrolling directing you to pay or pay here.
  • September 1 – 2019-2020 4-H Year begins
  • September 1-13 – Register for the 2019 4-H Chick Chain Show @
    • You’ll need to be re-enrolled with your fee paid to register
  • September 19-22 – Southern Region 4-H Teen Leader Conference 
  • September 28 – 4-H Chick Chain District Show

Questions?  Contact your 4-H Agent & get involved with 4-H!




4-H Graduate Spotlight

Youth walking across a field

Soon to be Chipley High School graduates and 4-H alumni – Connor and Dylan

The graduation countdown is on for Dylan Rudd and Connor Barrett.  Sure Shots 4-H Club members for over six years, these guys have grown up together on the range of Hard Labor Creek Shooting Sports.

Both Connor and Dylan are excellent marksman and were on the state winning shotgun team this year and have amassed numerous individual awards in skeet, trap and sporting clays.  While their skills have grown, competition has never gotten in the way of friendship and the sense of team that’s been the key to success with the Sure Shots club.

They’ve served as mentors to their teammates – coaching them through tough spots, giving them advice and always being helpful on and off the range.

I distinctly remember Dylan and Connor talking to my oldest son, Cole, at his second state shotgun match.  Nerves were getting to him, so Connor and Dylan talked to him, told him to concentrate and focus on what he knew and to quit looking back at his dad after every shot. That interaction did more for him than any talking-to his coaches could have done for him at that match.

Youth walking with shotgun over his shoulder.

Dylan participating in the 2014 club match.

Youth shooting a skeet target.

Conner in his first year as a Sure Shots 4-H Club member.

That team mentality has been present with both of these guys since I’ve known them.  They totally get that individual scores are a huge deal in shooting sports.  They’ve competed against each other in countless 4-H competitions and matches outside of 4-H, but at the end of the day, they are teammates.

Outside of 4-H, both Dylan and Connor are talented members of the Chipley High School band and maintain a rigorous course load to prepare them for careers in the engineering field.


We wish these guys the greatest success in college and can’t wait to see where their lives take them!
Mrs. Julie & Coaches Andy Fleener, Gary Clark, Nick Dillard & Sam Rudd

4-H Chick Chain Registration OPEN!

baby chick in grassRegistration opens today for the 2019 4-H Chick Chain project!  This project teaches youth how to raise baby chicks to laying age using science-based best practices.  At the end of the project, youth compete in a showmanship and skill-a-thon contest to test their knowledge and also exhibit their birds for judging and awards.

Purchase or hatch your own chicks during the month of March.  The number you choose to purchase or hatch is up to you, but we recommend that you begin with at least three chicks.

Chicks must be from the following breeds:

Child holding baby chicks in his hands.

Chicken breeds have unique needs and personalities. Do some research before you choose your breed.

  • Australorp
  • Barred Rock
  • Brahma
  • Jersey Giant
  • Leghorn
  • Orpington
  • Rhode Island Red
  • Silky
  • Welsummer
  • Wyandotte

There is an orientation webinar and a hands-on workshop to get you ready for the show.  Your 4-H Agent or project volunteer can also make a home visit to check up on your progress.

4-H Chick Chain is open to all youth ages 5-18 who are enrolled or enroll as new members in 4-H.  Enroll now.
Registration opens March 1 and closes March 31 in 4honline.
Families can share a project, but each youth should be individually registered.
Members who participated in the 2018 4-H Chick Chain project can register as a returning production project.


  • 2019 New Project:  $20
  • 2018 Returning Production Project:  $10

To learn all about the project, read the 2019 4-H Chick Chain Youth Project Guide.

If you’re an adult with a love of poultry that you’d like to share with others, consider becoming a 4-H poultry project leader.  Our poultry programs include 4-H Embryology in the Classroom, 4-H Chick Chain, and 4-H livestock clubs.  Visit to find out more.  To learn more about 4-H in your county, contact your local UF/IFAS Extension Office.

Still have questions about 4-H Chick Chain?  Contact project chair – Julie P. Dillard – or call 850.638.6180.  

youth display their awards

Best of Breed winners from the 2018 4-H Chick Chain.