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4-H kids will compete in Achievement Showcase

By Staff | Jul 19, 2020

The 4-H students are getting ready for more competition. Pictured is Aaron Lorenz, 16, of Kiester.

With county fairs cancelled all across Minnesota and other parts of the country due to COVID-19, many organizations and events which take place during the fairs also lost their stage.

It appeared young 4-H members, who had already invested time and money in preparation for the fair, were not going to have a chance to compete in 2020.

But now the Faribault County 4-H members are going to get a chance to share their talents this summer in the 2020 Achievement Showcase Event, which will be held Monday, July 27, through Thursday, July 30. The event will not be open to the public, however.

According to the Faribault County 4-H coordinator, Michelle Klinkner, most 4-H members had already invested a lot of time and, in some cases, money preparing for the 4-H competitions at the county fair.

“The kids typically begin working on their projects for the Faribault County Fair four to six months before the fair,” Klinkner explains. “4-H members with animal science projects can spend a year getting ready for the fair.”

Of course deciding what project to do is the first item of business to be taken care of for 4-H members wishing to compete at the fair.

“The kids will usually decide what to do based on their own personal interest. They tend to do something they are passionate about,” Klinkner shares. “They will also get ideas for their projects from different club demonstrations or camps they attend, such as a STEAM (science, technology, engineering, arts and math) camp.”

The students are divided into different age groups for the competition at the fair.

“We usually divide the kids by their grades. We have third through fifth graders together, sixth through eighth graders together, and then ninth graders on up for the last group,” Klinkner comments. “We have about 75 youth participating in the general/static projects. We also average about 125 kids showing in an animal science project.”

Klinkner shares there are many benefits to students who put forth the effort to do a 4-H project.

“They gain knowledge and skills from creating or working on a project,” Klinkner says. “They develop leadership and communication skills and can also learn teamwork, and how to be responsible and accountable for what they do.”

The schedule of events begins on Monday, July 27, with general/static project conference judging.

Livestock judging will begin Tuesday, July 28. The 4-H poultry event begins at 10 a.m. and the 4-H rabbit show starts at 2 p.m.

The 4-H beef show is on Wednesday, July 29, at 10 a.m. It will be followed by the 4-H dairy goat show and then the 4-H meat goat show at 2 p.m. The day will conclude with the 4-H sheep show at 6 p.m.

The final day of the showcase event is Thursday, July 30. It includes the 4-H swine show at 9:30 a.m., the 4-H dairy cattle show at 1:30 p.m. and the 4-H demonstrations which will held at 4:30 and 6:30 p.m.

The in-person showcase event, while giving 4-H members a chance to compete in spite of the county fair being cancelled, does have some strict rules due to the pandemic, which is why attendance is limited to the 4-H youth participating and their family (1-2 parents/guardians). Again, the events are not open to the public.

Families are asked to take their temperatures at home prior to the day’s events and anyone having a fever is asked to stay home.

A complete guideline to the rules and restrictions are available on the Faribault County website. Click the tab for departments and then the link for Extension to find the information about 4-H.