Butte Co. 4-H team named National Range Judging champions | TSLN.com
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Butte Co. 4-H team named National Range Judging champions

OKLAHOMA CITY, OK – The Butte County 4-H Team, along with the Newell FFA Chapter from Newell, SD, have returned home after participating in the 60th Annual National Land & Range Judging Contest in Oklahoma City, OK.

Seven hundred (700) teenage FFA and 4-H members competed in the contest, held May 3-5, according to contest co-chairman Joe Parker of Talala, OK. Parker is president of the Oklahoma Association of Conservation Districts and the contest’s principal sponsor. The Concho Cheyenne and Arapaho Agency hosted the Range judging event on May 5. Redlands Community College hosted the luncheon for participants at its Darlington Agricultural Education Farm near the contest site. Total registration for the event exceeded 1,000 people with coaches, sponsors, officials and group leaders in addition to the contestants.

The FFA and 4-H participating teams qualified for the national event by placing among the top five teams at contests held in their home state. The first two days of the three-day event offered contestants opportunities to visit nearby practice sites to get acquainted with Oklahoma soils and plants with information available from soil experts. The actual contest site remains a secret until contest day, so no one has an unfair advantage. Contestants and coaches gather on contest morning to find out the official contest location. They then travel to the site, with a police escort, in a caravan of over 100 vehicles spanning several miles.

The event ended Thursday night, May 5, with an awards banquet in the Great Hall of the National Cowboy and Western Heritage Museum. Lt. Governor Todd Lamb welcomed the participants. National championship trophies were awarded to team and individual winners in each category of the competition including: land judging, range judging and homesite evaluation. Each category included FFA and 4-H.

In the Range Judging 4-H Competition, the Butte County 4-H team brought home the National Championship. Brodie Shaykett placed second individually, along with Tyler Swan placing third, Jordan Brunner placing fourth, and Cady Olson placing fifth, respectively.

The Newell FFA Range Judging Team placed fifth in the nation. Team members included: Jonny Champion, placing seventh; Kristen Dunn, placing 23rd; Coral Starr, placing 26th; and Makayla Heisler, placing 43rd individually.

The teams were coached by TJ Swan, Butte County Extension Educator; Dave Ollila, Newell FFA Advisor; Jodie Dunbar, Newell FFA Advisor; and Karen Swan, Newell FFA Alumni Supporter.

According to Ollila, “These opportunities to expose students to the study of range management provide students with skills and understanding of a valuable natural resource that drives the economies of rural America in the West. Many students will pursue careers which require the knowledge of habitat and range resource management.”

In addition to practicing and competing in the range judging contest, the Newell FFA and Butte County 4-H members were able to take in some of the local attractions Oklahoma had to offer. They toured Braum’s Dairy and Processing facilities, where they milk more than 10,000 cows twice daily and process all the milk to be delivered to 270 stores within 300 miles of the farm. Other tours included: Oklahoma City Zoo, Oklahoma City National Memorial and Museum, Lazy E Ranch and the National Cowboy and Western Heritage Museum. Other activities the group participated in go-cart racing, watching horse races at Remington Park, and eating at the infamous Braum’s. Jack Link’s Jerky supplied more than 40 pounds of jerky to be enjoyed by the 10 South Dakota teams competing in the National Land and Range Competition.

OKLAHOMA CITY, OK – The Butte County 4-H Team, along with the Newell FFA Chapter from Newell, SD, have returned home after participating in the 60th Annual National Land & Range Judging Contest in Oklahoma City, OK.

Seven hundred (700) teenage FFA and 4-H members competed in the contest, held May 3-5, according to contest co-chairman Joe Parker of Talala, OK. Parker is president of the Oklahoma Association of Conservation Districts and the contest’s principal sponsor. The Concho Cheyenne and Arapaho Agency hosted the Range judging event on May 5. Redlands Community College hosted the luncheon for participants at its Darlington Agricultural Education Farm near the contest site. Total registration for the event exceeded 1,000 people with coaches, sponsors, officials and group leaders in addition to the contestants.

The FFA and 4-H participating teams qualified for the national event by placing among the top five teams at contests held in their home state. The first two days of the three-day event offered contestants opportunities to visit nearby practice sites to get acquainted with Oklahoma soils and plants with information available from soil experts. The actual contest site remains a secret until contest day, so no one has an unfair advantage. Contestants and coaches gather on contest morning to find out the official contest location. They then travel to the site, with a police escort, in a caravan of over 100 vehicles spanning several miles.

The event ended Thursday night, May 5, with an awards banquet in the Great Hall of the National Cowboy and Western Heritage Museum. Lt. Governor Todd Lamb welcomed the participants. National championship trophies were awarded to team and individual winners in each category of the competition including: land judging, range judging and homesite evaluation. Each category included FFA and 4-H.

In the Range Judging 4-H Competition, the Butte County 4-H team brought home the National Championship. Brodie Shaykett placed second individually, along with Tyler Swan placing third, Jordan Brunner placing fourth, and Cady Olson placing fifth, respectively.

The Newell FFA Range Judging Team placed fifth in the nation. Team members included: Jonny Champion, placing seventh; Kristen Dunn, placing 23rd; Coral Starr, placing 26th; and Makayla Heisler, placing 43rd individually.

The teams were coached by TJ Swan, Butte County Extension Educator; Dave Ollila, Newell FFA Advisor; Jodie Dunbar, Newell FFA Advisor; and Karen Swan, Newell FFA Alumni Supporter.

According to Ollila, “These opportunities to expose students to the study of range management provide students with skills and understanding of a valuable natural resource that drives the economies of rural America in the West. Many students will pursue careers which require the knowledge of habitat and range resource management.”

In addition to practicing and competing in the range judging contest, the Newell FFA and Butte County 4-H members were able to take in some of the local attractions Oklahoma had to offer. They toured Braum’s Dairy and Processing facilities, where they milk more than 10,000 cows twice daily and process all the milk to be delivered to 270 stores within 300 miles of the farm. Other tours included: Oklahoma City Zoo, Oklahoma City National Memorial and Museum, Lazy E Ranch and the National Cowboy and Western Heritage Museum. Other activities the group participated in go-cart racing, watching horse races at Remington Park, and eating at the infamous Braum’s. Jack Link’s Jerky supplied more than 40 pounds of jerky to be enjoyed by the 10 South Dakota teams competing in the National Land and Range Competition.


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