Pondera County 4-Hers have super showing at Marias Fair

Article submitted by Adele Stenson, Pondera County Extension Office
Pondera County 4-Hers have super showing at Marias Fair
GRAND FLEECE — William McDougall with his Grand Fleece Trophy and the Top Exhibit County Display award won by Pondera County 4-H Exhibitors. Photo by Dan Picard
   The Marias Fair kicked off with cool temperatures and a few rain showers, but that didn’t dampen spirits of 4-Hers or fair goers, as they participated in a week of fun, learning experiences, and competition.
   Many 4-H families moved into the fairgrounds on Tuesday night to get animals settled and prepare for interviews and shows on Wednesday. 
   The action continued all week until Sunday, when the shows were all over, and the two big events remaining were the annual water fight in the morning and the awards ceremony in the afternoon.
   Pondera 4-Hers made a good showing throughout the week. Whether they earned a top award or not, each one had the opportunity to demonstrate concepts they learned throughout the year, make new friends, and gain confidence in their ability to interview and to perform before an audience and judge.
   For most events, participants are divided by their age at the beginning of the 4-H year on Oct. 1, 2008. Pre-juniors are 8-10 years old, juniors are 11-13, and seniors are 14 and up. Some horse show events are divided by age level and others by experience level, as you will notice in the results below.
   Shooting tournaments divide participants into different four age categories for all disciplines, except air pistol. The results for archery, shotgun, and the air guns are for tournaments held prior to the fair. Participants compete at the tournaments, and must interview at the fair in order to be eligible for their awards.
   Project interviews are an important component of the fair.
   For each project a youth takes to the fair, he or she must complete a project interview where they discuss with a judge what they learned through the course of the year in that project.
   Youth are judged on their appearance, presence, communication skills and their project knowledge. They are eligible for best of class interview awards in their age division, regardless of how their final product actually turned out.
   Sometimes a person learns the most from their failures, and the youth that can express that to the judge can be rewarded in the interview process. Their exhibits are judged separately based on a standard criteria for each type of item.
   You will notice in the following results that members may participate in a wide variety of project areas. The shows represent most of the traditional areas, but a walk through the 4-H exhibit building would reveal that the options for projects are limited only by the members’ imagination.
   Top award winners from Pondera County are as follows: