Adams County 4-H sent 11 members to compete at the state 4-H Animal Science Bowl contests on May 11 on Penn State’s main campus.
Contests included Avian Bowl, Canine Super Bowl, Dairy Bowl, Horse Bowl & Hippology, Livestock Skillathon and Rabbit & Cavy Bowl. Members were awarded the opportunity to compete after weeks of preparation with the support of their coaches.
4-H leaders Kathy Raber, Amanda Hornig and Becky Black coached the junior and senior Canine Super Bowl teams. Five members from the 4-H Dog Club and the Seeing Eye Puppy 4-H Club came together to prepare for the contest. Junior Team: Michaela Black (Gettysburg), Charlotte Forman (York Springs). Senior Team: Elizabeth Marshall (Littlestown), Kaia Peterson (New Oxford), Catherine Albert (Hanover). Canine Super Bowl consists of two parts: Skillathon and Bowl. For Skillathon, members competed individually, answering multiple choice questions at five stations. The Bowl portion of the contest places one team of two to four players against another. Youth buzz in to answer questions and compete for points. Ahead of the contest, all registered teams had to submit 50 questions with answers that would be shuffled and used in the contest, leveling the playing field for all. In Skillathon, Michaela Black, Gettysburg, was the top scoring individual in the Junior Division, and Elizabeth Marshall, Littlestown, was the top scoring individual in the Senior Division. Adams County won first place in the senior division of the bowl contest.
After the contest, all participants were invited to attend an AKC agility trial at the Ag Progress Days site, hosted by the Mt. Nittany Dog Training Club (MNDTC). Members, parents and coaches watched handlers run their jumpers courses with purebred and mixed breed dogs. Several members of MNDTC took time out of their busy schedule to answer questions and explain how the courses are run to the 4-H’ers. Towards the end of the day, the official judge pulled all 4-H members into the ring to have them “walk the course,” or try out the course without a dog. She explained how agility courses are made, what handlers can be penalized or eliminated for, how to pace out courses, and much more. Adams County 4-H extends a huge thank you to the judge and all Mt. Nittany Dog Training Club members for welcoming and educating our 4-H Canine Super Bowl members.
Six Adams County 4-H’ers prepared for a different contest, Livestock Skillathon: Junior Team, Luke Workman (Littlestown), Naomi Spangler (Gettysburg), Bethany Spangler (Gettysburg), Casey Zirk (Littlestown); Senior Team, Montana Speelman (York Springs), and Jayden Pohlman (New Oxford). Sarah Wessel (New Oxford) attended all practices but had a scheduling conflict the day of the contest. Youth studied cattle, pigs, sheep, goats and alpacas for the contest. Subjects within those species included breeds, health, reproduction, quality animal management, breeding and market animal selection, equipment, feed and meat identification, and judging, anatomy and more. To prepare for Livestock Skillathon, 4-H members met weekly for regular practices and took several field trips.
The 4-H youth are appreciative of the businesses and individuals who helped them: Beau Ramsburg, Michelle Miller, Les Vough, Liberty View Creamery and the Carman Family, Reichart’s Meats and the Jeffcoat Family, Darlene Resh, Cheyenne Wivell, and Beth Lutz.
There were over 90 participants in a Livestock Skillathon contest. The Junior team from Adams County placed sixth in its division.
Both contests were held in new formats in 2019. All members were treated to Berkey Creamery ice cream after the contest, and visited Penn State University Park. Administered in Pennsylvania by Penn State Extension, 4-H is a non-formal educational youth-development program of the United States Department of Agriculture that helps young people develop knowledge and skills to become capable, caring and contributing citizens. To find your local program, visit the Penn State Extension website at https://extension.psu.edu/programs/4-h.