October 8, 2022, was the perfect day for 24 youths from around the state to show how well they have worked with their 4-H chickens. At 9:30 am, the youth entered posters and coop decorations in the fun part of the show. By 10:00 am, the attitudes changed and became more serious and concentrated. Showmen competed by 4-H age groups for top awards for the remainder of the day. Seven showmen registered for the Cloverbud Class (ages 5-8). Catie Timms, from Fairfield County, won Grand Champion for this division. Reserve Grand Champion was awarded to Elly Rose Healy from Marion County. Bowen Davis from Chesterfield County, Vanisha Spivey from Charleston County, and Brody Wiggins from Colleton County earned the remaining top five spots in the division. The poultry judge, Dr. Michelle Hall from Clemson University, was impressed with these youngest showmen commenting how each was appropriately dressed, knew the processes for examining their bird, working their bird on the table, and had some knowledge of poultry. For many contestants, the Cloverbud class is the first attempt at completing a 4-H livestock project or show but it is by no means less competitive.
The second age group to compete was Clover Leaf, ages 9-10. Clover Leaf contestants may have some prior experience working with livestock or showmanship, while others are new. Top awards for Clover Leaf Class went to Titus Clemson University Cooperative Extension Service offers its programs to people of all ages, regardless of race, color, gender, religion, national origin, disability, political beliefs, sexual orientation, gender identity, marital or family status and is an equal opportunity employer. Timms from Fairfield County, Grand Champion Clover Leaf, Vanessa Lyon from Orangeburg County, Reserve Grand Champion Clover Leaf, and Macy Davis from Chesterfield County, third place. Dr. Hall recognized these showmen’s ability to properly examine their birds, work their birds on the table, and answer age-appropriate questions regarding the health and care of their birds.
The Junior 4-H class (ages 1113) consisted of 7 entrants, most of whom have prior showmanship experience. It is not a requirement of 4-H that a participant begins with the lowest age category to participate in a project or showmanship. Youth may join 4H at any age between 5 and 18. Agents and specialists work with youth to gain the skill needed to compete in each age group. Grand Champion Junior was Thomas Timms from Fairfield County, Faith Davis from Chesterfield County took home Reserve Grand Champion, Lawson Weilnau of Bamberg County, Gabriel Barrett from Clarendon County, and Sydney Luiza from Dorchester County rounded out the remaining 3rd – 5th place ribbons. At the junior level of competition, the judge expects the 4-H’er to be proficient in bird examination, handling the bird, and knowledge of poultry. Minimal prompting and assistance from the ring assistant or judge should be necessary. Most showmen have several years of experience at the junior level of competition.
The final event was for Senior 4-H members, ages 14-18. Senior Grand Champion was Jake Owens from Orangeburg County, and Reserve Grand Champion was Emma Gifford from Clarendon County. Charlotte Watson from Florence County, Alayna Weilnau from Bamberg County, and Joseph Luiza finished the class placing 3rd – 5th, respectively. Senior showmen should be able to examine their birds in the correct order with no prompting from the judge. Their bird should be well-controlled and work well on the table. The knowledge of seniors should also reflect a greater Clemson University Cooperative Extension Service offers its programs to people of all ages, regardless of race, color, gender, religion, national origin, disability, political beliefs, sexual orientation, gender identity, marital or family status and is an equal opportunity employer. understanding of poultry and the poultry industry.
The 4-H Poster Contest allows youth to be creative and share a favorite part of the learning process. Youth can choose to share any part of the poultry project experience, from the steps of preparing a bird for the show, to how eggs develop inside the hen. A contestant may not be able to answer a specific question from the judge but has learned something valuable through the project and the poster contest allows them to share that knowledge with others. This year the Cloverbud poster winners were 1st Place, Hailey Parker from Dorchester County, with her poster “From Hen to Egg and Back Again,” and 2nd Place, Catie Timms from Fairfield County for her poster “4-H Hatches New Opportunities”. Junior winners were 1st Place, Thomas Timms from Fairfield County with his poster “Put all your Eggs in One Basket,” 2nd Place Timms with “4-H is Grade A Fun”, and 3rd Place Lawson Welinau from Bamberg with his poster, “Color Your Own Egg.” The senior poster winner was Alayna Weilnau with her “Grow What You Know” poster.
The 4-H Coop decoration contest is another fun event for youth to compete in, providing an artistic outlet for competition. Youth decorate their coop or carrier to express their interest in 4-H or another area. As with all 4-H competitions, the 4-H clover is required to be displayed, but the creativity is unlimited. Coop decoration awards were presented to Cloverbuds Catie Timms, 1st Place for “Fall in Love,” and Hailey Parker, 2nd place for “Spring Chick.” The Davis Family won the Clover Leaf division for their 4-H Themed display. Sydney Luiza inched out Lawson Weilnau for 1st place in the Junior division, with her “Halloween” theme beating out his “WWF” theme. Alayna Weilnau took top honors for Senior with “Chicken Little.”
Clemson University Cooperative Extension Service and South Carolina 4-H offer their programs to people of all ages, regardless of race, color, gender, religion, national origin, disability, political beliefs, sexual orientation, gender identity, marital or family status and is an equal opportunity employer. To learn more about South Carolina 4-H opportunities in your county, visit the website or your local Clemson Extension Office.
Clemson University Cooperative Extension Service offers programs to people of all ages, regardless of race, color, gender, religion, national origin, disability, political beliefs, sexual orientation, marital or family status and is an equal opportunity employer.
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