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Grilling for Success: The Florida 4-H Tailgating Contest

Grilling for Success: The Florida 4-H Tailgating Contest

Youth grilling

A 2018 NW District 4-H Tailgating Contest participant prepares to grill

Imagine the smell of a charcoal grill on a breezy summer day. A neighbor is grilling in their backyard, and you wish you were invited over for dinner.  Would it be even better if it was your child or grandchild doing the grilling for you?

Fire up Your Grill!

4-H members have been firing up their charcoal grills  and participating in the Florida 4-H Tailgating Contest since 2016. Designed to promote the use of animal protein in the diet, youth learn the art and science of safely preparing beef, pork, poultry, and seafood in an outdoor setting providing opportunities for 4-H youth to develop life skills, including decision making and healthy lifestyle choices.

In the Florida 4-H Tailgating Contest, youth grill two, 6-8 ounce portions of one of the following proteins:

  • beef
  • pork
  • poultry – turkey breast or half chicken
  • shrimp – fresh, headless and de-veined

While youth are grilling, judges observe food and fire safety actions and ask questions about the recipe and safety knowledge. A team of judges evaluates the cooked product by taste testing and scoring each entry.

4-H Tailgating District Contest

After youth compete at county contests or participate in day camps, they can register for the district contest. There are four district contests hosted throughout the state including our Northwest District contest held at the Washington County Ag Center on July 20, 2019.  Cash prizes at the district level are awarded in each protein category – 1st place $400, 2nd place $250, 3rd place $100 and 4th place $50.

Winn Dixie, National Beef and Sonny's logos

Scholarships and prizes are awarded thanks to these sponsors.

4-H Tailgating State Contest

The top two winners from each protein are then eligible to compete in the state contest held at the University of Florida on September 28, 2019. For the state contest, the 1st place winner in each protein area receives a $1,500 college scholarship and the 2nd place winner receives a $1,000 college scholarship.

Since the Florida 4-H Tailgating contest began in 2016, over $63,000 in scholarship money has been awarded to Florida 4-H members made possible by sponsorships from Winn-Dixie, National Beef, and Sonny’s.

Learn More at a Tailgating Day Camp

Last summer, over 100 youth attended day camps to learn about identifying cuts of meat, preventing food cross contamination and food-borne illnesses, grilling techniques, food safety and fire safety.  Contact your local UF/IFAS Extension office to find a grilling day camp near you so you can participate in the 2019 Northwest District 4-H Tailgating Contest!  Follow us on Facebook to see event details!

Resources

Graduating Senior Serving Club, Community and Even His Country

Santa Rosa 4-H member, Private 1st Class Wolf, serves his country in the United States Army.

Receiving an official title can be very exciting for a new employee.  Santa Rosa County 4-H member, Payton Wolfe has a new title and he hasn’t even graduated from high school yet.  His new title is now Private 1st Class Wolfe.  You see, Payton is serving the United States of America in the Army.  Wolfe completed his Basic Combat Training during the summer between his Junior and Senior years of high school.  He has officially been in the Army for quite some time now.

Payton Wolfe has a love of animal husbandry and has hatched over 5,000 eggs throughout his high school career.  During his many years in 4-H, he has raised numerous types of poultry including quail, chickens, pheasants, turkeys and ducks.  “I even had a couple of cows, but they were really just for pets, I never showed them,” Payton explained.

Along with animals, Payton has learned to have a heart of service for a long time.  He has completed over 300 hours of community service while in Santa Rosa County 4-H.  He has served his club as an officer, his community in service projects whenever needed, and now Payton will serve his country in the United States Army for six years.  Enrolling in the Army Veterinarian Specialist program seemed like a natural fit for him.  He will be helping care for bomb dogs and horses. Thank you for your dedication and service to our country Private First Class Wolfe!

We are proud that Payton is using the skills he learned as a member of 4-H to protect our country and are excited to see how he will continue to serve his world in the years to come.  To find out more information about 4-H programs that can offer essential life skills such as leadership, independence, and goal setting to your children so that they will grow up to become successful members of society and have a heart of service like Payton, please contact your local UF/ IFAS County Extension Office, or follow us on Facebook.

 

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.

HOW DOES THE 4-H CHICK CHAIN PROJECT WORK?
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.

HOW DO I SIGN UP?
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.

REGISTRATION FEES:

  • 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 http://florida4h.org/volunteers 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 – juliepd@ufl.edu or call 850.638.6180.  

youth display their awards

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

2019 4-H Chick Chain Project

baby chick in grassWell’s FRM was one of my favorite places to go with my dad when I was a little girl…especially when baby chicks arrived.  With spring right around the corner, local feed stores will be getting shipments of baby chicks soon.  Have you thought about raising baby chicks but are unsure how to?  Then join us in the 4-H Chick Chain project!

4-H Chick Chain 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.

HOW DOES THE 4-H CHICK CHAIN PROJECT WORK?
You’ll purchase or hatch your own chicks during the month of March 2019.  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

The 4-H Chick Chain is designed to take you step-by-step through the process of raising your birds to healthy laying age.

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

HOW DO I SIGN UP?
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.

REGISTRATION FEES:

  • 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 programs include 4-H Embryology in the Classroom, 4-H Chick Chain, and 4-H livestock clubs.  Visit http://florida4h.org/volunteers 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 – juliepd@ufl.edu or call 850.638.6180.  

youth display their awards

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

Say CHEESE! Exploring Dairy Science

Youth in a cheese making workshop

Can making mozzarella cheese really help you find your future career?

As an Extension Agent, I’ve attended numerous 4-H events through the years. Recently, I co-taught workshop at the National Youth Summit on Agri-Science at the National 4-H Center.  Along with 4-H Dairy & Poultry Science Specialist, Chris Decubellis, FCS Agent, Jill Breslawski, and Dairy Regional Special Agent, Coleen Larson, we instructed 53 teens from 23 states in our two workshops!

Careers and Cheese…There’s a Connection!

Teens were introduced to agri-science during the keynote address by Mr. Ted McKinney, the Under Secretary of Agriculture for Trade and Foreign Agriculture Affairs. Summit sessions included introductions to career options and agri-science hands-on workshops.  The questions and levels of interest were refreshing. I was most impressed with a young lady who expressed hesitation about attending the summit – she thought it would be solely farm-based topics.  After she participated in our Exploring Dairy Science workshop (incorporating a presentation on a wide variety of careers available in the Dairy Science field and a hands-on activity making mozzarella cheese), she inquired about my career.  As we discussed the vast realm of degrees one could hold to work as an Extension Agent and the wide variety of jobs available in Extension, she then shared she had found some direction for her future study in college when she entered as a college freshman in the fall of 2020.

Look Past the Title

Witnessing teens discover fields of study that meet their interests is the best reward!  These type of 4-H youth opportunities help teens in so many ways.  I encourage all 4-Hers to look past an event title, explore the event opportunities and keep an open mind. It could be a life changing experience!

For more information on 4-H in your county as well as state and national level events, contact your local UF/IFAS Extension office.  Learn more about the Florida 4-H Dairy project.

This  article was written by Marie Arick, UF/IFAS Extension Liberty County, County Extension Director & Family/Consumer Sciences Agent.

Hearing Impairment Is No Obstacle for 4-H Youth

Warren Loper holding the reins to his horse.

Photo Credit: Melissa Loper

Warren Loper is an award-winning member of the Boots and Buckles     4-H Horse Club.  Earlier this year, the Jackson County 4-H’er won awards at both the regional and state 4-H horse shows.  What makes Warren unique is that he is also hearing impaired.  But Warren is very much a “people person” and doesn’t like feeling different from anyone else. His mother, Melissa Loper, recently talked to me about his 4-H experience and how it has played a role in helping Warren build confidence and achieve success regardless of his challenge.

At two weeks old, Warren was diagnosed as being completely deaf due to improper functioning hair follicles in the Cochlea.  At 15 months of age, he received a Cochlear implant that was activated at 18 months of age.

Melissa said Warren didn’t like the Cochlear implant at first because it allowed for all sounds to be heard at once.  He had to learn how to drown out background sounds.  The implant had to be turned down completely and then slowly raised to a level that was tolerable.  His ability to handle the implant increased as he got older.  Melissa says there are times when Warren would rather not be able to hear.

When asked what role 4-H has played in helping Warren build confidence and feel included, Melissa shared the following:

Photo Credit: Julie Hughes

“Being involved in the 4-H Horse Project has helped him so much. He has come out of his shell.  His club leader, Lindsay Kiefer, has spent hours working with Warren and is so patient with him. He lives for helping other children, and it makes him feel important. One key thing is that no one on our team treats him like he is different than they are.  As a mother, that is so important to me. Seeing the improvements he has made in his social skills and seeing him develop into an amazing rider warms my heart.”

One of the key components of 4-H is developing life skills and providing a safe and inclusive environment for all youth regardless of their physical or mental conditions.  4-H allows all youth the opportunity to explore their areas of interest.  For Warren, the 4-H horse project allows him to learn the valuable life skills that come from raising and showing a horse and also allows him to exhibit mastery of learned riding skills in competitive events.

FUN FACTS…

Youth involved in the 4-H Horse Project learn more than just the science behind feeding and caring for a horse, and how to properly ride. Youth also compete in contests such as horse bowl, demonstrations, public speaking and art.  Youth participating in this projects use their horse as a tool to increase their knowledge and enhance their life skills making them more productive young people.  To find out more about the horse project in your county, contact your local UF/IFAS Extension office.