Friday, December 20, 2013

Making History: Missouri 4-H Dairy Judging Team Invited to International Judging Contest

Contact: Karla Deaver, 4-H youth development specialist
Headquartered in Lawrence County
Tel: (417) 466-3102

MT. VERNON, Mo. -- The Missouri 4-H Dairy Judging Team, already ranked among the best in the United States, is heading to international competition. They are also making history since this is the first time a Missouri 4-H Dairy Judging team has been invited to compete internationally.

The three member team constists of: Steven Nelson, son of Mike Nelson of Grove Spring; Tucker Peterson, son of Janet Peterson of Mountain Grove; and Bailee Whitehead, daughter of Tony and Nikki Whitehead of Conway.

The team has been invited to compete in the 2014 International Dairy Judging Tour of Scotland, England, Wales and Ireland from June 18 to July 2. Missouri 4-H’s team was invited in recognition of their outstanding results from the National 4-H Dairy Judging Contest at World Dairy Expo this past October.

In Scotland, the team will be in competition with other winning 4-H, FFA and intercollegiate teams on June 21 at the Royal Highland Show in Edinburgh.  The show has a worldwide reputation for showcasing the best of Scottish food, farming and culture, and more than 5,000 entries in livestock are anticipated.

There is also a second competition scheduled for Charleville, Ireland on June 28.  Beyond the competitions, they will tour dairy farms, agriculture industries, and other local interest sites, providing a varied cultural opportunity for the team.

“We are very proud of the way this team has competed, and they are very deserving of this opportunity” said Karla Deaver, a University of Missouri Extension 4-H youth development specialist.  “All members of this team are involved in the dairy industry. Growing up they were working on family dairy operations, showing and judging cattle from a young age. They have worked hard to reach this level of competition, and that hard work has paid off.”

The team and their families, coaches, and other judging supporters are hard at work now to raise the funds needed to finance the trip.  The team needs to raise $20,000 for trip expenses.

Those interested in contributing to the fund raising effort may contact either of the team coaches with MU Extension:  Karla Deaver, 4-H youth development specialist, at 417-466-3102; or Ted Probert, dairy specialist, at 417-741-6134.

Donations may also be sent to the Missouri 4-H Foundation in care of the MO 4-H Dairy Judging Team.

The team receives ongoing support from Monsanto Company, FCS Financial, the Missouri Holstein Association and the Missouri Dairy Association in partnership with the Missouri 4-H Foundation, and thanks all their sponsors for their support.  

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