Did you know the Florida 4-H Horse Program offers horse shows, horse judging, Hippology, public speaking, demonstrations, illustrated talks, quiz bowl, horsemanship schools, and even scholarships?
January kicks off the new year of the Florida 4-H Horse Program, and now is the time to get involved! The Florida 4-H Horse Program consists of all the programs mentioned above, and only a few of those events actually requires owning a horse. The horse program has something for everyone, and the best part is that you get involved with youth focused, horse loving community. Below, we will introduce you to each part of the program, but if you have more questions, be sure to reach out to your county agent. For this article, we will look at programs where you do not need to own or lease a horse, and programs where you do. So let’s get started!
Horseless Programs (No horse needs to be owned or leased)
About: In horse judging, youth are presented classes of horses, and they are asked to evaluate each class, place them, and present oral reasons. This competition teaches youth to look at horses and evaluate the based on both confirmation and function. To watch a short video outlining the details of the competition, click here.
February 8, 2020: Florida State Fairy Horse Judging Contest, Tampa, Florida
April 4, 2020: State 4-H and FFA Horse Judging Contest, Gainesville, Florida
For More information, please visit the UF 4-H Horse Judging Website.
About: Quiz bowl is a trivia style contest with both individual and team components. Topics range from practical hands on knowledge to horse industry knowledge. To learn more about these events, watch a short video here.
June 1, 2020 – State Entry Deadline
June 20, 2020- State 4-H Horse Quiz Bowl Contest, Gainesville, Florida
For More information, please visit the State 4-H Horse Demonstrations and Public Speaking.
About: Hippology includes all aspects of horse knowledge and covers topics ranging from judging to feedstuffs identification. Hippology includes practical horse management knowledge combining it with the experience and knowledge from all the other contests (Judging, quiz bowl, public speaking, etc.). To watch a short video outlining the details of the competition, click here.
April 4 & 5, 2020: State 4-H Contest, Gainesville, Florida
For More information, please visit the UF 4-H Hippology Website.
Public Speaking/Demonstrations/and Illustrated Talks
About: In these events, youth get to explore an area of interest as it relate
s to horses, then create a presentation to share it with others. These events have a county, district, and in some cases a state level. To learn more about these events, watch a short video here.
Most counties have a qualification process, that differs across the state. Check with your county agent for the specifics on the county and district qualifying events.
June 1, 2020 – State Entry Deadline
June 20, 2020- State 4-H Horse Demonstrations and Public Speaking Contest, Gainesville, Florida
For More information, please visit the State 4-H Horse Demonstrations and Public Speaking site.
About: The Florida 4-H Horse scholarship program aims to reward youth who are demonstrated an intense passion and advancement in the Florida 4-H Horse Program. These scholarships have their own specific requirements and awards. For More information, please visit the Florida 4-H Equine Scholarships Summary here.
To watch a short video outlining the details of the opportunities, click here.
June 1, 2020- Scholarship Applications are due
*Be sure to work closely with your county 4-H agent to ensure this process goes smoothly.
Project Horse Programs (A horse must be owned/leased by youth)
Area and State Horse Shows
Important Dates and Information:
If you want to compete at your Area Horse Show, you need to be aware of the following items:
- December 31, 2020- The Florida 4-H Horse Certification Form should be submitted to the county 4-H on or before December 31, 2020 to qualify to pa
rticipate in the Area North Horse Show and the State 4-H Horse show. This form must be completed each year, even if you are using the same horse as a previous year. A youth should do this for each horse they intend to show or use to participate in 4-H shows with.
- Find the form here: Florida 4-H Horse Certification Form
- December 31, 2020- A Horse Lease Form should be completed and submitted if a youth wants to participate with a horse that is not owned by the youth. Even if you are borrowing the horse without a fee, youth must have a Horse Lease Form on file with the local county 4-H office.
- Find the form here: Horse Lease Form
- The Florida 4-H Horse Project Record Book is a great way to track and demonstrate your growth throughout the year.
- Find the project book here: Florida 4-H Horse Project Book
Each county has their own specific guidelines and requirements. Please be sure to check when your county offices are closed for the holidays as they may not be open on the final day the form is due. Contact your county office if you have any questions or concerns regarding county specific requirements. For more information about Florida 4-H Horse Project opportunities visit the State 4-H Horse Events site.
About: Horsemanship school is a week long program geared at teaching and equipping youth with the knowledge and tools needed to be successful and grow as horseman. There are three program offerings: Western week, English week, and Cowboy Camp (male 4-H youth). To watch a short video outlining the details of the opportunities, click here.
May 31-June 5, 2020 – Cowboy Camp, Gainesville, Florida
June 7- 12, 2020 – Western Week, Gainesville, Florida
June 14-19, 2020 – English Week, Gainesville, Florida
For more information, please visit the UF Horsemanship School website.
The Florida 4-H Horse program is abounding in opportunities, so come join our community of horse loving youth and adults focused on “making the best, better”!
If you have any questions or concerns, please feel free to reach out to us!
You can find your local county 4-H office here.
*Photo Credits belong to:
Julie Andrews Photography, 2019 Area North Horse Show, Clay County, Florida.
Anne Peterson, Escambia County 4-H Volunteer
Aly Schortinghouse, Escambia County 4-H