The University of Nebraska’s East Campus is the site of 4-H’s Premier Animal Science Event. 4-H’ers from across the state gather to compete in 8 livestock events. According to Dawson County Extension Educator, Bruce Treffer, “no county was better represented or more successful than Dawson in 2019.” Twenty-three of our 4-H’ers participated and brought home 3 championships, 2 reserve championships and a host of individual awards.
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Dawson County easily out-distanced 11 other teams to take not only the Meats Championship but also the reserve championship. Individually, team members took 6 of the 8 top spots. Gold medalist was Jennifer Guerra-Mazariegos of Eddyville; silver medalist was Faith Whitesel of Miller; and bronze medalist was Spencer Walahoski of Overton. Placing fourth was Jacie Wolfinger of Lexington. Helene Keiser of Gothenburg was 7th; and Emma Peterson of Gothenburg 8th. No team members placed outside of the top 14. The winning team consisted of Jennifer, Faith, Helene and Greg. The reserve champion team of younger 4-H’ers was Spencer, Jacie, Emma Peterson and Addison Luther, of Overton.
The Meats Contest consists of retail meat cut identification, judging classes, and a test of food safety knowledge. The first place team goes on to the National Contest in Kansas City.
The Dawson County 4-H Meats coach is Curt Rickertsen, Lexington. Special thanks goes out to Oren Anderson from Plum Creek Market Place’s meats department for hosting workouts.
Topping 11 4-H teams including runner-up Buffalo County in Skillathon was a senior team of Heath Keiser, Savannah Peterson, Jace Russman, and Neligh Andersen, all of Gothenburg. Of the 6 practical knowledge stations they won the evaluation marketing; the Equipment-breed and the meats. Coaches for the team were Taryn Vonderschmidt of Lexington and Heath Weichel of Eustis.
INTERMEDIATE QUIZ BOWL
Livestock Quiz Bowl tests the quick recall of animal science knowledge on all species. Two Dawson County teams competed in the Intermediate Contest. The Champion team consisted of Parker Walahoski of Overton; Jacie Wolfinger of Lexington, Hayden Russman of Gothenburg, and Bart Beattie of Sumner. They beat the Hall County team in the final match. The other Dawson Intermediate team was Preston Beattie, Sumner; Jaelin Wolfinger, Lexington; Emma and Addison Howerter, of Cozad.
SENIOR QUIZ BOWL
The Dawson County Senior Quiz Bowl team took earned the State Reserve Championship. Team members were: Spencer Walahoski, Overton; Emma Peterson, Helene Keiser, Sydney Howerter, Cozad and Gage Andersen of Gothenburg. The other Dawson County team was also competitive and consisted of Greg and Sarah Treffer and Gracie Schneider all of Cozad; and Mattison Beattie of Sumner. Quiz bowl coaches were Jennifer Schneider of Cozad and Shannon Peterson of Gothenburg.
SENIOR LIVESTOCK JUDGING
The Dawson County team placed 4th in Senior Livestock Judging. Team members were Heath and Helene Keiser, Savannah Peterson of Gothenburg, and Spencer Walahoski, of Overton. Alternates were Emma Peterson, Gracie Schneider, Greg Treffer, Mattison Beattie, and Sarah Treffer. Heath was also 10th in Beef and 4th in reasons.
INTERMEDIATE LIVESTOCK JUDGING
The livestock judging contest is one of the year’s most competitive events. Placing 6th was a Dawson County team of Jacie Wolfinger, Parker Walahoski and Jaelin Wolfinger. Parker was 5th in reasons and 10th in beef and Jacie was 6th in reasons.