4-H members study agriculture ‘Over the Pond’

Pictured are team members: Haydon Schaaf, Clay Brillhart, Jillian Keller, Brody Nemecek. Submitted photo.


Submitted by: Carla Nemecek, Southwind Extension District Director



In January 2019, the Southwind Extension District 4-H Livestock Judging Team of Jillian Keller (Piqua), Brody Nemecek (Iola), Haydon Schaaf (Uniontown), and Clay Brillhart (Fort Scott) were named Reserve National Champions at the National Western 4-H Livestock Judging Contest in Denver, Colorado. In recognition as a winning team, they were awarded an invitation to compete internally at the Royal Highland Show in Scotland and at the Charleville Show in the Republic of Ireland, June 19-July 3, 2019.

The Royal Highland Show was a top-notch livestock show similar to what could be found at the American Royal or National Western Stock Show. The Southwind District 4-H youth were divided into pairs, and each pair judged a different species. Jillian Keller and Clay Brillhart formed the Kansas 4-H Sheep Team and earned recognition as the Reserve Champion Sheep Judging Team. Haydon Schaaf and Brody Nemecek were the Cattle Team and were 7th. No overall results were announced, but combined division scores reveal that the Kansas 4-H Team was Reserve Team Overall, behind a 4-H team from Virginia. Individually, Jillian Keller was 2nd in Sheep; Brody Nemecek 5th in Cattle; Clay Brillhart 7th in Sheep and Haydon Schaaf 14th in Cattle.

The biggest part of the International Livestock Tour included agriculture seminars, tours and opportunities to enhance leadership skills and education through interaction with the citizens of the UK and Ireland. They toured a variety of livestock operations, including a water buffalo milking facility that produced their own mozzarella cheese; a sheep milking operation that produced their own blue cheese; a progressive 3-ring sale barn; and a Waygu beef feeding facility that raised 5-year old steers that are sold at a retail price of $50,000 each. One of the most memorable tours was on a farm that raised Highland cattle and owned a bull that came from the Queen’s own herd.

In addition to the agriculture tours, the Kansas youth also wore kilts in Scotland, rode the London Eye in England and kissed the Blarney Stone in Ireland. The International Livestock Tour included American 4-H and FFA Teams from 9 different states who had all earned the opportunity to travel by winning either a Champion or Reserve title at a National Livestock Judging Contest.

To raise funds for the Tour, the Southwind team sold stock in the Livestock Judging Team and will be hosting a shareholders meeting on Friday, August 2, 2019, at the Liberty Theater in Fort Scott, KS. Shareholders will be treated to dinner and a detailed explanation of the learning opportunities encountered on the Tour so they can see the return on their investment in the 4-H Livestock Judging Team.

Carla Nemecek

Southwind Extension District
Director & Agent
[email protected]
1 North Washington, Iola, KS 66749

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