Thursday, October 29, 2009

Story Telling Competition Open to Area Youth

The Southwest VA 4-H Center is hosting a story telling competition January 23, 2010, for interested youth. Presenters will have 8-12 minutes on stage to tell their tale. Winners from the state event will be eligible for the national contest in Tennessee. The contest is open to all youth ages 9-19. This sounds like a wonderful new opportunity. Many of you have great dramatic talent, so hopefully you will be able to showcase those skills in the story telling event. Please contact the Extension Office for more information.

Win $100 in Essay Contest

Is our community honey bee-friendly? Write an essay on this very topic and win $100 for first place. The 2010 essay contest, hosted by the The Foundation for the Preservation of Honey Bees, Inc. will accept youth entries until February 5, 2010. For a complete list of rules and entry guidelines, please contact the Extension Office. This is a great way to earn recognition for your writing and research skills, as well as learn more about honey bees and all that they do for us.

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Update: International Exchange Opportunities

An additional 4-H exchange program is available for youth ages 16-19 for the summer of 2010. American delegates may travel to Norway, Australia, Costa Rica, or Japan. Most countries' applications are due February 1st, so please contact the Extension Office now for more information.

Hardwood Tree Seedlings Available in Spring

Is your club looking for a community service project? Consider planting tree seedlines to improve the environment around us! Free hardwood tree seedlings (oak, kousa dogwood, etc.) are available through a Department of Forestry grant. Orders are due January 1st; seedlings will be delivered in March or April. Please contact Kaci if you would like to participate.

Kudos to the Goat Club which planted trees at Lightfoot Elementary last year.

4-H International Exchange Opportunities for Young Alumni

4-H young alumni ages 19-30 can participate in IFYE (International 4-H Youth Exchange) programs next summer, but now is the time to start working on your application. Visit European countries, experience new cultures, and do this on the cheap! You are responsible for your airfare, but room and board are covered by the host families.

If you are not yet old enough to travel, or have no desire to travel, consider hosting an IFYE from Europe in your home here in Orange County. Extension Agent Kaci Daniel has personally hosted several IFYE's and the experience has been positive. Call the Extension Office for more details about hosting!

Suggest a Theme for the 2010 Orange County Fair

Are you quick with words, or do you have a catchy theme for the 2010 Orange County Fair? The fair board is asking for 4-H's help. Past themes have been: "Make Tracks to the Orange County Fair", "A Treasure Chest of the County's Best", and "A Family A-Fair" to name a few. Since you decorate your pen area according to the theme, use this opportunity to suggest a theme that you really want to do. Send suggestions to Entries are due by November 17th. Good luck!

P.S. ANY 4-H'er can make a suggestion, not just those who show at the fair.

LEGO Teams Host Open Practice -- You're Invited!

The Orange 4-H LEGO Robotics teams will host an open practice next Tuesday, November 3rd, when schools are closed for Election Day. They are meeting in the Sedwick Building Public Meeting Room (behind the Extension office) from 10:00 a.m. to Noon. Please come and see what 4-H LEGO Robotics is all about! The teams are currently preparing for regional competitions in November.

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Nixon Steer Named Reserve Champion in State Fair Carcass Contest

Congratulations to Elizabeth Nixon, owner, exhibitor, and breeder of this year's Reserve Champion Steer in the State Fair of Virginia Carcass Contest. Elizabeth also showed the steer at the Orange County Fair in July. This is a great accomplishment, and it's even more significant that the steer was born and raised on the Nixons' farm. Good job!

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

True Blue Cloverbud Fundraiser

The True Blue Cloverbuds have a new fundraiser! They are selling the Attractions- Dining and Value Guide book for the Fredericksburg area. These books contain a variety of coupons from places like Gander Mountain, Dick's Sporting Goods, World Market, Rack Room Shoes, and Plow & Hearth. There are also tons of opportunities for buy-one-get-one free entrees from dozens of restaurants in the area. Coupons are also included from all major golf courses and theme parks. Surrounding areas that are included in the Value Guide are Fredericksburg, Spotsylvania and even Culpeper. Help support the True Blue Cloverbuds by buying a book for just $25! For more information on these great savings contact Tracy Gill, Jennifer Bryington, or the Extension Office (672-1361).

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

4-H Anglers Offer Boater Safety Class

All are invited to participate in the next Boater Safety Class, offered by the 4-H Jr. BASS Anglers. The class will be held Sunday, October 25, from Noon to 4:00 p.m. at Orange County High School. Members of the public are encouraged to participate. Please e-mail to register for the event.

New Crazy Pets Club off to a Busy Start

The brand new Crazy Pets 4-H Club had a grand inaugural start this month with 13 members, seven of whom are new to 4-H! The club will meet on the first Tuesday of each month at 6:30 p.m. at the leader's home in Unionville. Please e-mail for more information about the club.

At the club's November meeting, participants can expect to learn about animal tracks--identifying them and even making your own replicas of wildlife tracks! Also, come meet a hedgehog! How cool is that? Crazy Pets members should have a general interest in animals and their care; owning a pet is not required in order to be part of the group.

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Stockman's Team Captures Top Awards at State Fair

The Junior Team consisting of Blake Hopkins, John Michael Knight, Robert Nixon, and Marlaina Johnson won their division! And they were 43 points in front of the next closest team. Blake was 1st individual overall, John Michael placed 8th overall, Robert Nixon was 16th overall, and Hope Johnson was 21st high individual. CONGRATULATIONS!!!

In the Senior Division, Elizabeth Nixon placed 13th overall. The senior team, consisting of Nixon, Bobby Chambers, Garret Chambers, and TJ Williams placed ninth overall.

4-H Achievement Night Date & Time Confirmed

It's a go! Mark your calendars for 4-H Achievement Night--Saturday, November 21, 6:00 p.m., at Prospect Heights Middle School. 4-H will provide the meat, paper products, and drinks; families should bring a side dish or dessert to share. All club members, camp counselors, donors, supporters, volunteers, and 4-H'ers are invited to attend. Please RSVP to the Extension Office (672-1361) to let us know how many to expect from your family.

Also, we will be conducting a food drive at Achievement Night. For each non-perishable food item you bring, you will receive a ticket toward door prizes that will be given away. See you November 21st!!!

Nixons Win Sheep Exhibitor Awards at State Fair

Congratulations to Robert and Elizabeth Nixon for impressive showings in the State Fair Sheep Awards announcements. Robert was 6th overall for the Premier Sheep Exhibitor contest. Elizabeth was named Premier Sheep Exhibitor for 2009. This award is based on participation in the stockman's contest, showmanship, a sheep quiz, and more. Way to go!

Monday, October 12, 2009

4-H All Star Nominations: Now is the Time to Begin Work

Senior 4-H'ers who are planning to apply for 4-H All Stars this year should begin working right now! Preliminary nominations are due to the county office by November 15th. Nominations must be typed, and forms are available online. Please e-mail kaci at vt dot edu if you want to apply this year.

Open House for Agricultural Technology Program at Virginia Tech

The Agricultural Technology program at Virginia Tech is hosting an Open House for prospective students November 7, 2009. Please visit for more information. Registration is due by October 30th; you can e-mail or call 540-231-7649.

Ramey Accepted to Virginia Intermont College

Congratulations, Ashleigh Ramey, 4-H Hoof Mates member who was recently notified of her acceptance to Virginia Intermont College in Bristol. She plans to major in both Photography and Equine Science.

Solids, Spots, and Dots Club Results from State Horse Show

Eight Orange County Solids, Spots and Dots 4-H Club members traveled to the State 4-H Horse Show. Kristen Hager was Intermediate Hunter Horse Champion, 2nd Int. Htr o/f (A), 1st Int Htr o/f (B), 5th Int Htr u/s, 3rd Int Horse Equitation. She also received the Emily Hilsher Memorial Award for accruing the most points as the senior hunter rider for the day. Melanie Gallahan placed 10th in Sr Int Htr o/f (A) and 8th Sr. Int Htr o/f (B) (class 2). Kim Portwine placed 8th in Sr. Int Htr o/f (A) and 8th in Sr. Int Htr o/f (B). Molly Lumsden was 7th in Sr Htr Showmanship, 1st-Sr (16-19) Lg Pleasure Horse (A), 1st-Sr (16-19) Lg Pleasure Horse (B), Champion Sr (16-19) Large Pleasure Horse, 8th Sr (16-19) Lg Horse Equitation on the Flat, Champion Hunter Pleasure Horse Classic.

Taylor Creel earned awards of 6th Sr Large Pleasure Pony A and 10th Sr lg pleasure pony B. Janie Cardwell placed 5th in Sr. Showmanship, 10th sr lg pony htr o/f, 8th lg pny u/s. Jaclyn Burke was Reserve Champion jr Lg Pony Htr, 2nd jr lg pny htr o/fA, 1st lg pny htr o/f B, 5th jr lg pny htr u/s, 1st jr lg pny equitation, Pony Equitation Classic Champion. Zoe Lumsden was 3rd Sm/Md Pny Htr A, 7th sm/md Pny Equitation o/f (9-12).

The members of the club, led by Marty Hartmann, 4-H volunteer, presented well in honor of their club president, Natalie Nash, who came up ill and was unable to attend. Each of the members qualified at a District Show in order to compete on the state level.

Officer Training Workshop October 31st

All newly elected club officers are reminded of the Officer Training Workshop on Saturday, October 31st, from 9:00-11:30 a.m. at Orange County High School. New this year: there will be two tracts (one for new officers and one for more experienced officers), so ALL are invited! There will also be a special session for 4-H adults! Please call the Extension Office to sign up, or you may e-mail Tina in the front office at Thanks!

MARE Center Holiday Art Contest

All young artists are encouraged to design this year's holiday card for the MARE Center in Middleburg. Visit for all the details. Of course, the artwork should be horse-related, but you do not necessarily have to belong to a 4-H horse club in order to participate. Good luck!!! I'd love to see some Orange County artwork be distributed to all of the MARE Center supporters this Christmas!

State Horse Show Silent Auction Results

The State 4-H Horse Show Silent Auction raised more than $1,659 for the show. Items contributed by Orange's Hoof Mates Club garnered bids of $130. Thanks for helping out this important event!

State Horse Show Results for Hoof Mates Club

Congratulations to Amanda Ramey, who was 2nd in Large Hunter Pleasure Horse Senior Rider, 8th in Hunter Sidesaddle, 5th in Hunt Seat Equitation on the Flat, and received a red premium in Senior Hunter Showmanship. Her sister Ashleigh was 4th in Senior Hunter Trail, 1st in Hunter Sidesaddle, 1st in 3’ Equitation Over Fences, 3rd in Hunt Seat Equitation Horse Classic, 2nd Regular Working Hunter Course A, 1st Regular Working Hunter Course B, 2nd Regular Working Hunter Under Saddle, Champion Regular Working Hunter, High Point Hunter Senior Rider, and 2nd in the Senior Technical Art Contest.

Bryan Ramey was 8th Hunt Seat Equitation on the Flat, 1st Western Pleasure Small Pony 1st Go, 1st Western Pleasure Small Pony 2nd Go, Champion Western Pleasure Small Pony, and Reserve Champion – Western Pleasure Pony Classic. Colton Peregoy was 2nd in Hunt Seat Equitation on the Flat, 4th in Hunter Pleasure Large Pony, 1st in Hunter Pleasure Large Pony, Reserve Champion Hunter Pleasure Large Pony, and
Reserve Champion Hunter Pleasure Pony Classic.

Congratulations to all Hoof Mates, who received blue Danishes in stable management, and many thanks to club leader Jody Ramey for submitting these results. Great job, everyone!

Hoof Mates Collect 34 Coats for State Show Service Project

Kudos to 4-H Hoof Mates members who collected 34 coats from our community to take to the State 4-H Horse Show in September. The show's goal was to fill a horse trailer, donated by Blue Ridge Trailer Sales, with warm coats to be distributed across the state to persons in need. And they met that goal!!! Thank you, Hoof Mates, for your participation in this wonderful event and for exemplifying the "hands to larger service" portion of 4-H.

Teen Weekend to be Held at 4-H Center

The NOVA 4-H Center is calling all teens (4-H Club members or not) for a special weekend, October 23-25. There will be workshops related to finances, savings, buying a car, etc. There is also plenty of social time planned, so you can enjoy meeting teens from other counties in our camping district. Visit for a brochure and registration form.

Thursday, October 1, 2009

Save the Date: 4-H Achievement Night

Save the date: the 2009 4-H Achievement Night will be held Saturday, November 21st, at 6:00 p.m. Location is yet to be determined. Stay tuned for more details... All clubs and 4-H members, campers, etc. are invited to attend with their families. There will be a covered dish meal.

"Clovers All Over" at Southern States

All Southern States customers, and even those who are not, are encouraged to stop by Orange-Madison Co-op in the next two weeks to purchase a paper clover to benefit 4-H. This program, which coincides with National 4-H Week activities, is similar to charity fundraisers in retail establishments. For $1 each, customers can purchase a paper clover, write their name on the clover, and it will be posted in the window of each Southern States store. Proceeds benefit National 4-H Council and the local county 4-H program. Spend your dollars in Orange! Many thanks in advance!

Robinsons Win at State Fair

Congratulations to Joe and John Robinson for wins at the State Fair of Virginia. Both boys participated in the dairy goat show. John exhibited the Grand Champion LaMancha dairy goat and Joe exhibited the 4-H Grand Champion Recorded Grade Dairy Goat. Good job on representing the Orange 4-H Goat Club!