Monday, March 25, 2013

Virginia Beef Queen Contest

Interested in helping promote the beef industry in Virginia, and you're a girl from a beef cattle producing family between the ages of 16-22?  Check out the awesome opportunity to apply to be the 2013-2014 Virginia Beef Queen.  The Virginia Beef Queen represents the beef industry at various industry events throughout the year, such as the State Chili Cook-off, the State Fair, Agri-Business Dinner, Beef Industry Convention, and Beef Expo.  This year, the contest will be held on Friday, April 19 at the Virginia Beef Expo.  Each contestant should be prepared to give a 3-5 minute speech on a positive aspect of the industry and will also have a brief interview and question session with a panel of judges.  Scholarships will also be given to the top three contestants.
For more information and the application packet, check out the blog post follow up on the document library. Applications are due no later than April 15.

Thursday, March 21, 2013

Junior Beef Round-up Entry Information is Released

Dr. Paige Pratt, Extension Youth Livestock Specialist, announces the following regarding the Junior Beef Round-up at the Virginia Beef Expo:

1.       The entry process is online ONLY!  Please go to  In the middle of the page you will see “2013 Junior Beef Roundup”; click on “Register Here” to enter AOB heifers, Commercial heifers and Steers ONLY!  You will be able to pay online or download a PDF and mail the entry form in with your payment.

2.       ALL  cattle will need a CVI (health paper).  The official identification that must be in your animal’s ear and on the CVI is detailed in the “Health Requirements” PDF online. 

3.       We will be assigning stall spaces; therefore, NO exhibitors will be allowed on the fairgrounds until Saturday morning at 7AM!  For more information on stalling,  please see the Letter to Exhibitors (also found on this website). 

4.       Check-in and Weigh-In will occur from 9:30 to noon on Saturday.  ALL registered and commercial females and steers will go through check-in with a designated show official.  For more information on check-in/weigh-in,  please see the Letter to Exhibitors (also found on this website). 

5.       All registered cattle (Angus, Red Angus, Simmental, Hereford and Shorthorn) will need to contact their Junior Breed Advisor for their entry form; some of these can be found online at the youth livestock homepage.

6.       The entry fee (this is variable based on registered cattle versus commercial /AOB /steers) is for breed classes only on a per head basis; showmanship is FREE, but we need an accurate head count of who will be showing in showmanship, so please check the appropriate box to let us know if you will be showing.

All of this information and other details that are very important are found in the Letter to Exhibitors.  Also on the website, please find the map that includes how  you will need to enter the farigrounds for your stall assignment!! 

All entries are due online by Friday, March 29.  Entry fees will double after that date!!  If you have any questions please let me know!

Paige Johnson Pratt, Ph.D.

Extension Specialist

Department of Animal and Poultry Sciences

Virginia Tech

368 Litton-Reaves Hall (0306)

Blacksburg, VA  24061

Office: 540.231.4732

Fax: 540.231.3010

Cell: 540.315.5719


Northern District Show Packet Released Today

Exhibitors with hogs, sheep, beef and dairy cattle are encouraged to participate in the Northern District Livestock Show on Saturday, May 18, in Culpeper.  A complete rules and entry packet was made available today and is posted on the Culpeper Extension office website.  Entries are due April 12 to the Orange office; we will sign and forward to the show managers.

Wednesday, March 20, 2013

Call for Chefs! (To-Be)

Do you have a budding chef or restaurateur looking for an exciting summer experience? As you may have heard, Virginia Tech students enjoy a wonderful dining experience during their time at college. They would like to share their award-winning skills with the next generation!
VT Dining Services is hosting a five-day, four-night camp from June 25-29 on the beautiful Virginia Tech campus for students in grades five through eight. Executive chefs and managers will be teaching the basics, including cooking techniques, nutrition, food safety, table etiquette, and more. Activities will include many hands-on demonstrations, tours, and fun evening events. Camp participants will be staying in a newly-renovated residence hall and will get to experience a slice of on-campus life with social activities in the evening.

Campers will:
  • gain hands-on culinary training;
  • learn to prepare different meals;
  • make their own ice cream, and desserts;
  • learn kitchen and food safety;
  • tour the kitchen facilities, garden, and dairy barn on campus;
  • learn about nutrition and smart shopping;
  • participate in fun evening activities;
  • and much, much more!

Participants must register by May 31. Students will check-in on the afternoon of Tuesday, June 25, and the camp will conclude with a parents luncheon on Saturday, June 29. The program fee is $525 and includes lodging, meals, and evening activities. A $100 deposit is due upon registering for the event. 

There are only 30 spots available in this inaugural camp so sign up soon!

For more information, visit

NOVA 4-H Center Offers Camp for You AND Your Horse!

It's time to take your horse to camp!  That's right!  The Northern Virginia 4-H Center is offering a special horse camp August 4-8 in Front Royal for riders and their horses.  More information will be posted to the NOVA website shortly, so please click HERE.

Tuesday, March 19, 2013

4-H Creates Tree for SAFE Organization in Promotion of April is Prevent Child Abuse Month

Check out this colorful and creative tree that Beverly Harris created for SAFE's April is Prevent Child Abuse Month awareness campaign.  Members of the Orange 4-H Archery Club, Goat Club, Livestock Club, and Livestock Cloverbuds decorated handprint cutouts for use on the tree.  Various organizations in the planning district are creating trees which will be on display in various public locations throughout the month of April. 


Wear a blue ribbon in April to let others know that you support safe and stable environments for children and that you will report any suspicions of abuse or neglect to the authorities.  Thank you, 4-H members and leaders for donating the hands on the tree, thank you, Beverly, for creating the tree, and thank you, SAFE (Services to Abused Families), for leading this campaign.

Monday, March 18, 2013

Woolfrey Scholarship Announced

The D.A. Woolfrey, Jr. Foundation recently made available college scholarship applications for high school seniors.  Participants should be accepted to a 2- or 4-year institution with an intended major in agriculture, math or science.  Applications are due May 3, 2013, and have to go through your high school guidance office.  For a copy, please contact the Extension office.

Thursday, March 14, 2013

Hunter Skills Weekend to be Offered in May

Holiday Lake 4-H Center is offering a Hunter Skills Weekend, May 3-5.  It is designed to help the beginning hunter develop skills beyond the basic Hunter Education course or the experienced hunter to learn different skills.  The program offers instruction in shooting, woodsmanship, and hunting techniques for a variety of species. For ages 11-through adults; all under the age of 17 must be accompanied by an adult. Cost: Early Bird: $110.00 (registration and payment received by April 12, 2013) Regular Price: $120.00 (registration and payment received after April 12, 2013) this covers meals Friday Dinner-Sunday Lunch, lodging and all instruction. Please register by: April 19, 2013. To register, full workshop descriptions, or for more information:  Sponsored by Holiday lake 4-H Center, the Virginia Hunter Education Association, in cooperation with Virginia department of Game and Inland Fisheries.

Wednesday, March 13, 2013

Orange Archery Club Visits Augusta Club for Friendly Competition

The new Orange 4-H Archery Club traveled to visit the Augusta Archers last Saturday.  All of the archers improved their skills from the beginning to the end of the clinic.  In the March Madness tournament that was held, Nathan Cole placed first and Ryan Cole placed third.  4-H member Cynthia (from Augusta County) placed second.

Good job!  The club next meets this Friday night and has another tournament on Sunday.

Nixon Wins Top Honors at MAJAC Show

Congratulations to Robert Nixon, Orange 4-H Livestock Club Treasurer and senior member, who recently won the Intermediate Showmanship Division at the Mid-Atlantic Junior Angus Classic in Harrisonburg, VA.  Taking top honors over more than 70 exhibitors in that age division is quite an accomplishment, plus there were exhibitors from several states in attendance.  Additionally, Robert exhibited the Grand Champion Angus Female at the show!  Way to go, Robert! 



Monday, March 11, 2013

FREE Saturday Science Workshops for Kids

The James Madison Museum will host a series of monthly science workshops for kids, starting March 23. In the first session, participants will build their own weather station and learn about climatology, how the ocean affects weather, and how Thomas Jefferson and James Madison impacted weather monitoring. There is no cost to participate in these workshops, and all will be held Saturdays from 10 a.m. to 12:00 Noon. Details are available at

Monday, March 4, 2013

Can You Give Us a Hand?

April is Prevent Child Abuse Month and to increase awareness, 4-H is partnering with SAFE to create displays of paper cutouts featuring children's hands.  We need at least 100 cutouts, so if you have time, please trace your hand on any paper - plain or fancy, decorated or not - and cut out that shape.

We need all submissions to the Extension office by the last week in March please.  Thanks so much for lending a hand!

Holiday Lake 4-H Hosts Week-long Family Camp in May

Holiday Lake 4-H Educational Center is hosting a week-long family camp on May 27-31, 2013.  Most, if not all that attend Family Camp are home-schooling families. This camp is for the WHOLE family, from newborn to great grandparents!  For additional information, please contact Heather Benninghove, Program Director, Holiday Lake 4-H Educational Center, (434) 248-5444,