April 2006
4-H Extension Corner

  The new Alabama Junior Cattlemen directors and officers for 2006 are (from left) (seated) President/Director Mathew Pounds, Montgomery; Vice President/Director Randa Owen, DeKalb; Secretary/Directory Reba Hicks, Geneva; Treasurer/Director Lauren Roberts, Cullman; (standing) Director Skye Black, Chambers; Director Tyler Wood, Cullman; Director Slate Knight, Chilton; Director Katlynn Sullivan, Baldwin, and Ex-Officio/Director Katlin Mulvaney, Lee.
Wow!! What a month. I hope that you made it out to your County, District or the State Steer and Heifer Show this past month. A District Show was added to the Huntsville Area this year and it was a great success. Thanks to all the volunteers and parents that made all of these shows go so smoothly. It was a completion of many yearlong projects in cattle, lambs and sheep.

All of this went along with 5 Rodeo Performances. Cameron Ellison and Matthew Bowman won the Calf Scramble with Wesley Hyde and Jeremy Pike. During this busy week we also elected new Alabama Junior Cattlemen Directors and officers. Go to www.bamabeef.org to see more info on winners and directors.

We crowned Cullman as the best "Steer Palace" of the state, with Caleb Elrod winning Champion and Amie Hill winning Reserve Champion Steer (both of Cullman) at the Southeastern Livestock Expo. The Alabama Bred and Raised went to Champion Katie Kimbrell (Tuscaloosa) with Jamie Heflin (Chilton) taking Reserve. The top Carcass Steer in the state came from Montgomery County and Carla Weissend while Randa Owens proved her Showmanship Skills again this year winning for the third straight year. Mobile County won the Senior Beef Quiz Bowl and Tuscaloosa County won the Junior Beef Quiz Bowl. Calhoun County won the Goat/Sheep Quiz Bowl. Other winners will be listed next month. For a complete list of EXPO placings and more info on the South Alabama Junior Market Hog Show go to www.aces.edu/~rebert.

I want to say that every child that brought an animal to the Alabama Expo was a winner. You did not have to walk out first to have a successful project. It was nice to see all of the Volunteers and Parents that lifted up the youth as they walked out of the ring. Realizing that youth development happens at many levels, it was refreshing to see all the youth as they learn more about their projects and the business of Agriculture.

Thanks again to those that are an ENCOURAGEMENT to the YOUTH of Alabama.

February was busy with a great Teen Winter Retreat for 4-Hers and a Volunteer Retreat for Adult 4-H Volunteers, both being held at the 4-H Center. Plans are now being made for our second Golf Tournament. If you or your company would like to play the awesome Farm Links course please contact me for more details. We will have several celebrities and money will go toward the Environmental Building, soon to be under construction, and toward Regional Programming. We would love to have you be a part of this great event.

I would like to spend the next few months writing about the four Hs in 4-H.

The 4-H Youth Development Ideals

4-H Youth Development creates opportunities for youth:

1. To experience
                                             INDEPENDENCE clearer thinking…

Youth need to know that they are able to influence people and events through decision-making and action. By exercising independence through 4-H leadership opportunities, youth mature in self-discipline and responsibility, learn to better understand themselves and become independent thinkers.

Youth need to learn that decisions they make need to be considered carefully and acted upon only after the implications of those decisions are explored and weighed. 4-H club projects allow members to make choices about such things as design and coordinating materials not to mention selection of topics that are valuable to them. This gives youth a base of experience on how to make decisions and enables them to face the more important choices that must be made later in life.

Youth are given leadership positions in 4-H clubs that allow them to work with other members and take responsibility for some or many of the decisions and/or actions that were once solely those of adults. Organizational skills, patience and group dynamics are key traits learned here that become priceless assets to youth as they mature into contributing adults in society. Many of these same traits are taught to members as they participate as followers or team participants in group settings. Young people are not just the leaders of tomorrow—they have great untapped potential for responsible leadership today.

2. To experience
                                                     BELONGING greater loyalty…

3. To experience
                                                     I pledge my hands to larger service…

4. To experience
                                                     I pledge my health to better living…

The Philosophical and Academic Basis of 4-H January 2005 II.

Until next time, God Bless!

James Shropshire is the Alabama 4-H Regional Extension Agent for the Central Alabama Region. E-mail him at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..