NILE to hold youth virtual livestock eval contest

Billings, MT— In a year where a lot of events look different, The NILE is proud to offer a Livestock Evaluation contest for 4-H and FFA members, held VIRTUALLY, on Thursday, Oct 8. 4-H and FFA members from across the United States of America meeting the age requirements are eligible to judge. Get registered today – deadline to register is Thursday, September 30th!


The Livestock Evaluation competition is to provide an educational experience for youth to learn more about animal evaluation and public speaking. Through these skills, youth expand their knowledge about the agriculture industry.

Each team is made up of four (4) members. The top four (4) scores will count toward the team scores. Individuals enrolled in a 4-H or FFA program that have not graduated or under the age of 19, may be allowed to enter. (Not a collegiate competition). Those competing as individuals will not be eligible for team awards, but will be eligible for individual awards.

The NILE offers four (4) divisions:

Sr FFA Team (Jr & Sr in High School)

Jr FFA Team (7th Grade – Sophomore)

Sr 4-H Team (14-18 years of age – as of Oct 1, 2020)

Jr 4-H Team (8-13 years of age – as of Oct 1, 2020)

Cost is $50 per team or $20 per individual.

All participants will be expected to remain in the contest until the announced hour of completion.

A live virtual judging contest is one that is delivered via zoom. Youth will need to be physically present to participate. Each youth will need access to an electronic device that has internet and video accessibility and have the Zoom program downloaded on the device. Youth will also need the device to fill in their digital scantron during the judging portion of event. If the youth are viewing the contest with their FFA advisor or 4-H educator in a group setting, youth can share the electronic device that is showing the classes. Each exhibitor will need their own device for giving reasons.

Once teams or individuals have registered they will be e-mailed a group of links: one to access the scantron and other for the zoom link that they will utilize to connect to the contest.

The contest will be run just as a live livestock judging contest would be. Youth will have 10 minutes on non-reason classes and 15 minutes on reason classes to judge the class and submit their placing. The classes will be shared on the main zoom room monitor or youth will be given a link that they can view on their own electronic device (by viewing the link on our own device, it helps minimize the lag time of the videos). At the conclusion of the allocated time, the class will be locked.

Once all the classes have been judged, the youth will be given a reason order on the zoom room monitor. This order will be the order used for youth giving their reasons. When it is the youth’s turn to give reasons, they will be moved into a breakout room in zoom where they will give a live set of reasons to the reason taker and moderator in that breakout room. Upon completion of that set of reasons, they will return to the main room and wait for their next set of reasons.

The contest will be scored in the same manner as a traditional livestock judging contest – there will be 50 points possible for each class and 50 points possible for reasons.

One award will be given in each category, all ties will be broken.

The judging contest may consist of up to (10) classes selected from the following: beef – live feeder calf, breeding and cull-keep or market class; swine – market, breeding; sheep – market, breeding, cull; and reason classes; goats – market, breeding, cull; and reason classes. (The management reserves the right to alter any classes because of difficulty in securing livestock or any other reason).

Participants are encourage to participate in one of the training sessions scheduled for Monday, October 5 at 4 p.m. MST to learn how the contest will operate. Enter email at time of entry, an email link will be sent after the registration deadline with training session time and information.

Day of Schedule —

Thursday, October 8:

12 p.m. MST: Techonology Help

12:30 p.m. MST: Pre-contest instructions & annoucements

12:45 p.m. MST: Judging Begins

approx. 2 p.m. MST: Reasons begin

Friday, October 9:

12:30 p.m. MST: Officials and critiques will be given by Northwest College

1 p.m. MST: Awards Ceremony via Facebook LIVE (tune into the Northern International Livestock Exposition’s Facebook page)

Registration deadline is Wednesday, September 30th. Please visit to register (or click the link below). For 4-H teams without a Judging Card account, please call the NILE Office at 406-256-2499 to register. All registration fees must be paid by September 30 – check or cards accepted! The Livestock Evaluation contest is conducted by Northwest College from Powell, Wyoming, Wyoming 4-H and Eastern Wyoming College and sponsored by Stockman Bank – Worden.