Back row: Carson Meeks, Courtney Dickens, Abby Malone, Abe Goolsby, and Jubilee Hart; Front Row: Ava Grisham, Gavin Leech, Abby Purtee, Tucker Smith, Gabe Harville, and Vanea Reece; Not Pictured: Auburn Swann, Greg Dixon, Ashlyn Naylor, Max Long, Madison Askew, Ethan Padgett, and Cole Hackett.

The Smith County 4-H Demonstration and the Interactive Project Board Contest was held on May 7, 2019, at Hyder Burks Ag Pavilion in Cookeville, Tennessee.  Eight 4-H’ers gave demonstrations and ten youth presented their project boards.

During the local 4-H club meetings in February, 4-H’ers competed in the demonstration contests in the 4th and 5th grades and in the project board contests in the 6th, 7th and 8th grades.  This further promotes communication skills for young people in Smith County.  It teaches the 4-H’ers to express themselves clearly, to learn how to gather information, to organize their thoughts and to learn to speak in front of a group.  

The demonstration and the project board competitions were broken down into the 27 different project areas, which include everything from citizenship to electric, food science to sheep, and everything in between! 4-H’ers are encouraged to choose a project(s) and build their knowledge of the subject material. They also complete activities related to the project area, keep records of their activities, give written and oral demonstrations/display boards, and participate in judging and other contests. 4-H’ers are encouraged to work with parents, volunteers and other 4-H’ers who share similar projects. Project work not only increases a 4-H’er’s knowledge of a particular subject of interest to them, but can also prepare them for a career in that field, such as veterinary science. Scholarships, prizes, awards, and special recognition are also the rewards for project work.

One way 4-H’ers can participate in their chosen project area is to compete in Project Achievement Contests held in local clubs and then on to multi-county competitions.

The 4th and 5th graders that competed in the Area Demonstration Contest were Auburn Swann – 1st place Engineering/Safety Science; Greg Dixon – 1st place Goat; Ashlyn Naylor – 2nd place Line and Design; Max Long – Nutrition/Health/Fitness; Gavin Leech – 2nd Photography; Madison Askew – 1st place Plant Science, Ethan Padgett – 2nd  place STEM, and Cole Hackett – 1st place Swine.

In the Project Display Board Contest the 6th – 8th graders included: Ava Grisham – 1st Beef; Tucker Smith – 2nd Beef; Abe Goolsby – 1st Citizenship; Jubilee Hart – 2nd Companion Animal; Vanea Reece – 2nd Food Science; Gabe Harville – 1st Forestry, Wildlife, & Fisheries; Carson Meeks – 2nd Forestry, Wildlife, & Fisheries; Abby Purtee – 1st Horticulture/Garden; Abby Malone – 2nd STEM and Courtney Dickens – 1st Sheep.

For further information relating to any of the many 4-H activities, events and projects, please contact Katie Martin in the Smith County office of the University of Tennessee Extension at 615-735-2900.

The 4-H Youth Development Program delivers programs through cooperative efforts of the University of Tennessee, Tennessee State University, and public and private sector volunteers.  4-H educational programs are offered to all youth, grades 4-12, on an age-appropriate basis, without regard to race, religion, color, national origin, gender, sexual orientation or disability.