There was no ‘Summer break’ for some

OKEECHOBEE — When it comes to 4-H and FFA, there is no such thing as a summer break, at least for many of the participants. This summer, kids from Okeechobee joined other dairy kids from around the state to participate in national breed conventions, and they did Okeechobee proud!

Special to the Lake Okeechobee News
Edana Scalf, graduating Sharpshooter’s 4-H Club senior, was honored with the 4-H Leader of the Legacy Award at 4-H University. Edana was one of five youth throughout the state to receive the award. She is pictured with 4-H agent Paula Daniel (L) and 4-H Program Assistant Carrie Muldoon (R).

Below are the results:

National Guernsey Convention Wisconsin
• Intermediate Folding Display Contest — Cole Verano of Okeechobee County won first place;
• Junior Prepared Public Speaking Contest — Lilly Larson of Okeechobee County won first place;
• Senior Prepared Public Speaking Contest — Cady McGehee of Okeechobee County took third place;
• Junior Extemporaneous Public Speaking Contest — Lilly Larson of Okeechobee County took second place;
• Junior Dairy Quiz Bowl — third place and senior team, second place.

Ayrshire/Brown Swiss Convention New York
• First Place Junior Jeopardy — Jenna Larson, Okeechobee County;
• First Place Junior Quizbowl Team — Jenna Larson, Aubrey Clay (Okeechobee members);
• First Place Photography — Aubrey Clay;
• First Place Display — Jenna Larson (Okeechobee), Josh Larson (Okeechobee);
• First Place Video Contest — Jenna Larson (Okeechobee).

Special to the Lake Okeechobee News
4-H University participants (left to right) included Cole Verano, State Council voting delegate; Katie Walther, graduating senior; Paula Daniel (4-H agent); Zoe Walther; Shelby Sumner, State Council Reporter; and, Todd Addington. The event was July 29-Aug. 1 at the University of Florida, Gainesville.

The Okeechobee Brahman FFA Chapter had some accomplishments this summer as well:

Aubrey Pearce was elected District 11 President and Dayton Buxton was elected District 11 Secretary.

Dayton Buxton, Kaitlyn Williams, Cody Deloney, and Jo’ Dejah Sewell received their state degrees.

Special to the Lake Okeechobee News
Pictured are all the agri-science fair participants: Jenna Larson, John Wesley Williamson, Adam Moore, Rafe Sexton, Conner Rucks and Savannah Moreno.

Aubrey Pearce received the Beef Production Placement proficiency award.

The Ag Mechanics team was recognized for placing second in the state, and the Citrus Evaluation team was also recognized for placing fourth in the state.

Special to the Lake Okeechobee News
Shelby Sumner was installed as State Council Reporter at 4-H University.

In the 4-H arena, Edana Scalf, received Leader of the Legacy Award in our district. There are only five given out in the entire state, said Carrie Muldoon, 4-H program assistant. Katie Walther, a graduating senior, was recognized and given her 4-H alumni pin for graduating.

Special to the Lake Okeechobee News
Pictured (left to right) are John Wesley Williamson, Buddy Mills, Jenna Larson (first place agri-science Fair — Animal Systems Teams).

Shelby Sumner was elected to state council as reporter at 4-H University in Gainesville. She then attended a week of officer training. As state officers, they will have a big role in putting together state events, she explained. They each chair executive board committees as well. Shelby will be chairing one on the standing committees and sitting on an event committee. She is chairing the Communications and Council Support Committee which she said is more focused on promoting 4-H and doing things with social media and that type of thing to spread the word about what they are doing at the state level. Shelby also went to Tallahassee for 4-H legislature this summer.

Special to the Lake Okeechobee News
Pictured (left to right) are Johanna Heijkoop, Julia Heijkoop (Sumter County) Aubrey Clay (Okeechobee) Josh Larson (Okeechobee) Colton Shoop (Hillsborough) Jenna Larson (Okeechobee) and Logan Shoop (Hillsborough).

“It was so much fun,” she said. She had never gone before. She can’t wait for next year already. She spent a week in Washington D.C. for 4-H Citizenship Washington Focus, ans then spent a week in Texas for the Texas 4-H Youth Livestock Ambassador Short Course. There were 25 students taking college level animal science courses, and they had to apply for the program. There were 31 students from Texas, Shelby and one other person from Florida, one from Louisiana and one from Arkansas. They are hoping to start a similar program in Florida. She did spend one week at home, but she had Dairy Judging practice so she said she wasn’t actually home during that week. She just slept there. After that week, she went back to Washington D.C. for the N.R.A. Youth Education Summit, and that was incredible, she said. They did debates and went around looking at monuments. She flew into Orlando, and her mom picked her up.

Special to the Lake Okeechobee News
Pictured (left to right) are Logan Shoop, Jenna Larson, Josh Larson, Nick Hammer (Hillsborough), Colton Shoop, Julia Heijkoop, Johanna Heijkoop and Aubrey Clay.

“I am so extremely grateful for my mother,” said Shelby. “I would not have survived this summer without her.” She drove us to Gainesville, and then it was 4-H University that week. “I’m really happy with the team. We have a really great team,” said Shelby. “Officer training was so much fun.”

They have a theme for Executive Board, but it is a secret, and to find out what it is, the executive board members will have to wait until the first executive board in October.

Cathy Womble is a staff writer for the Lake Okeechobee News.

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