Lancaster farming. (Lancaster, Pa., etc.) 1955-current, December 27, 2003, Image 52

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    812-Lancaster Farming, Saturday, December 27, 2003
New Jersey 4-H’ers Attend National Congress
For 79 years, National 4-H Con
gress has hosted youth from the
United States and its territories
in a youth leadership develop
ment conference, this year taking
place in Atlanta, Georgia, No
vember 28 through December 2.
The program combined a vari
ety of sessions, seminars, discus
sion groups, and a service learn
ing experience for the delegates.
The nation’s most outstanding
community leaders, speakers,
and educators presented current
and timely information, provid
ing the youth, ages 14-19, with a
quality, educational and cross
cultural experience designed to
address the needs and issues of
Twenty-three 4-H teens from
New Jersey participated includ
ing the following from Hunter
don County. Lindsay Dehart
chuck, Alexandria Township,
and Mary Hefferner, Raritan
The theme, “Growing Into the
Future,” focused on environ
mental awareness. Awesome edu
cational programs were devel
oped for the conference including
a variety of fim and exciting rec
reational and networking oppor
tunities. A cultural evening was
added this year where youth were
engaged in a variety of forms of
the arts. The delegates were ex
posed to many venues in the city
including the Centennial Olym
pic Park, The World of Coca-
Cola, CNN Center, the Carter
Presidential Library, and the
Martin Luther King Center.
Each year a community service
project is planned and last year’s
collection of dimes for Habitat
for Humanity International was
tremendously successful. The col
lection for Habitat once again
was included this year, collecting
over $lO,OOO. This year, in coop
eration with the local Habitat for
Humanity Chapter, they began
the process of building the “Clo
ver House,” which will always be
known as the “House that 4-H
4-H Programs
Co.) Pennsylvania’s answer to
the widely asked question,
“Where’s the beef?” can be found
in Penn State Cooperative Exten
sion 4-H livestock clubs, which
teach youth skills needed to be
come beef producers. More than
1,700 young people participated
in such clubs last year.
Participants, who are all be
tween the ages of 8 and 18, raise
cattle from calves and learn
about everything from feeding,
diets, veterinary care and birth
ing to grooming and showing ani
mals at fairs.
“There is no better way to pre
pare for becoming a beef produc
er than taking part in the 4-H
programs,” says Bob Mikesell,
4-H livestock program specialist.
“The youngsters are exposed to
every aspect of the business.”
4-H beef cattle programs pro
vide kids with different experi
ences tailored to their circum
stances. “You don’t have to live
on a farm to participate,” says
Mikesell, “but you do need access
to farm facilities. Some projects
require more resources than oth
ers, but none are backyard proj
Phil Hoy, cooperative exten
sion youth program coordinator,
notes that although 4-H offers
many different types of projects
to enhance the lives of both rural
and urban youth, animal projects
remain tremendously popular.
New Jersey 4-H’ers and agents who attended the National 4-H Congress, back row
from left, Tara Pawchak, Morris County; Bev Hahn, Morris County; Marilu Randolf, Hunt
erdon County; Lillian Shupe, Hunterdon County; Dan Mundy, Hunterdon County; Shelly
Damiano, Atlantic County; Judy Knehr, Ocean County; and Macy Compton, State 4-H
program coordinator, New Brunswick. From left front are Karen Cito, Hunterdon County;
T.C. Buchanan, Hunterdon County; Karen Mansue and Barbara Teymant, both repre
senting Ocean County.
State Team Competes In 4-H National Wildlife Contest
Co.) From the green, tree-cov
ered hills of Pennsylvania, four
4-H youth journeyed to New
Mexico to compete recently in the
2003 4-H National Wildlife Habi
tat Evaluation Contest in the hot,
flat Chihuahuan Desert.
To win a spot on the Keystone
State team, the youth placed
among the top four at the state
contest held last spring. This
year, three of the four team mem
bers were from McKean County:
Lisa Dunkerton, Sunny Frey and
Bethany Kibble are all members
of the 4-H Sewing Suzies, Junior
Outdoorsmen and McKean
County Council. The fourth team
member was senior Katie Bru
necz of Warren County. Ann
Dunkerton of McKean County
Preparing New Beef Producers
“Raising beef cattle takes a
higher initial investment and a
bigger commitment of time and
resources than some other animal
projects because more space and
more farm facilities are needed,”
he says, “but the returns in
terms of education and career
preparation are also signifi
The Market Steer Project pro
gram boasts the most partici
pants 1,468 last year among
4-H beef programs. Youths pur
chase calves in mid- to late-fall
and feed, care for and groom the
steers in preparation for showing
and selling them at county fairs
and round-ups the following
Penn State’s detailed, step-by
step reference guide for the 4-H
Market Steer Project leads first
time participants through select
ing a project animal, caring for
the steer and keeping it healthy,
grooming it and showing it.
“This project mirrors the com
mercial beef industry fairly close
ly,” says Mikesell. “What the in
dustry does with hundreds or
thousands of head of cattle, a
4-H’er does with one, two or
In the Breeding Beef Project,
youths select heifer calves and
raise them to breeding age. Then
they have the heifers bred and
oversee the birth of a new calf.
“They start their own little beef
herd,” says Mikesell.
and Pam Snook of Clinton Coun
ty were the team coaches who ac
companied the girls.
As Pennsylvania was experi
encing a summer of torrential
rains, the girls learned about
management of livestock and
wildlife where there is little or no
rainfall. Contestants individually
judged the suitability of habitat
for wildlife species through on
site evaluation and aerial photo
graphs. As teams, they wrote
urban and rural wildlife manage
ment plans for nine different
wildlife species.
The Pennsylvania team placed
10th overall, with a strong show
ing in its rural management plan.
Alabama’s team placed first, fol
lowed by Virginia and Georgia.
Following the contest, partici-
“Kids in the heifer project can
show at beef breed exhibitions, as
well as local fairs and state spon
sored shows,” he adds. “They
also learn about reproductive
health programs, calving man
agement and artificial insemina
The third 4-H beef program,
the Dairy Beef Feeder Calf Proj
ect, offers a way for kids growing
up on or around dairy farms to
experience beef production by
using bull calves. More than 200
youngsters took part last year.
“Pennsylvania’s dairy industry
produces many bull calves, few of
which are needed for breeding
purposes,” explains Mikesell.
“Most dairy bull calves are des
tined for veal or beef produc
As a result, 4-H youths can buy
week-old dairy bull calves at a
lower price than they could pur
chase 500 to 600 pound beef
calves. “The kids teach the calves
to eat grain and have them cas
trated into steers,” says Mikesell.
“Dairy-type steers are not eligible
for certified beef programs such
as Certified Angus Beef, and they
have to be fed a very concentrat
ed diet to make them suitable for
slaughter, but when fed correctly,
dairy steers can produce accept
able-quality beef.”
For more information about
4-H, contact your Penn State Co
operative Extension county of
fice, or visit on
the World Wide Web.
pants enjoyed a trip to White
Sands National Monument and a
gondola ride/hike on Sierra Blan
ca (11,400 feet above sea level)
near Ruidoso, N.M.
The national contest is spon
sored by the U.S. Fish and Wild
life Service, International Paper,
the Rocky Mountain Elk Foun
dation and the National Rifle As
sociation. The Pennsylvania
Game Commission paid travel
costs for the Pennsylvania team
and the Pennsylvania Outdoor
Writers Association also contrib
uted to defray team members’ ex
Adams County 4-Her
At Egg Conference
Summer Chronister, daughter
of Mr. and Mrs. Mike Chronister,
Dillsburg, represented Adams
County and Pennsylvania at the
National 4-H Poultry and Egg
Conference in Louisville, Ky.
Summer is one of five 4-H mem
bers from Pennsylvania who were
selected to attend the 2003 Con
Summer is a member of the
York Springs 4-H Club, Adams
County 4-H Beef Club, and
Adams County 4-H Senate. She
currently is President of her local
4-H club. Summer was a camp
counselor, County 4-H Ambassa
dor, and involved on several com
mittees in Senate.
The Maryland 4-H Dairy Quiz Bowl Team placed second
overall in the 4-H Invitational Dairy Bowl Competition at
the North American International Livestock Exposition,
Nov. 8. Shown here (from left) are the team members and
their coach: Amanda Kilby, Cecil County; Caitlyn Trout,
Frederick County; Davis Schwartzbeck, Carroll County;
Jonathan Saunders, Carroll County; and April Hall, coach,
Cecil County.
Jeff Ishee
Va. Farm Bureau
Awards PBS Host
WVPT Virginia Public Televi
sion’s host Jeff Ishee has re
ceived the Virginia Farm Bu
reau’s Journalism Award for
most comprehensive agricultural
coverage in Virginia.
More than 700 people from
across the commonwealth of Vir
ginia, including leaders in farm
ing and agriculture and elected
officials, recently attended the
award ceremony in Williams
Ishee is the host and producer
of “Virginia Farming,” WVPT’s
weekly television program dedi
cated to the agriculture industry
in Virginia. The program is pro
duced by WVPT and broadcast
on WVPT, Virginia’s Public
Television and WBRA Blue
Ridge Public Television, reach
ing more than 60 Virginia coun
Ishee is also Farm Director for
WSVA radio in Harrisonburg
and hosts “On the Farm Radio,”
a syndicated radio show for lis
teners in Virginia, West Virginia,
Maryland, Pennsylvania, Ten
nessee, and North Carolina. In
addition, he produces and broad
casts the “Agribusiness” news
segment for WSVA. His Website