SAINT JOHNS COUNTY – A number of awards were earned April 7 and 8 when the St. Johns County 4-H Senior Horse Judging and Senior and Intermediate Hippology teams competed at the State 4-H Contest in Gainesville. The St. Johns County 4-H Senior age team judged a total of eight horse classes, of which four were halter classes and four were riding classes. Riding disciplines being judged were Reining, Pony Hunter Under Saddle, Ranch Riding and English
An additional challenge for youth taking part in this contest is that they are required to demonstrate their communication skills by presenting oral reasons for four of their class placings. This three member, Senior team placed third overall in the state 4-H Horse Judging competition. Dana Kusch took 2nd place high individual and Taylor Garns took 6th place high individual overall. This was the first year for this senior team to compete at this event.
Both the Senior and Intermediate teams competed in the State 4-H Hippology contest. Hippology is the study of the horse. Components of the contest include a written exam, identification of items shown on slides, judging, ID stations, and team problems. Competing against five other teams, the St. Johns County 4-H Intermediate team took second place overall. Team members included Mia Clyce, Amber Carlton, Sean Merriam and Macie Cerasale. Amber Carlton took 2nd place high individual and Macie Cerasale took 5th place high individual overall. The St. Johns County Senior team took third place overall out of eight teams.
Senior team members included Taylor Garns, Dana Kusch and Caroline Gordon. Dana Kusch took 2nd place high individual and Caroline Gordon took 3rd place high individual overall. This was the first Hippology competition for both of these teams. The St. Johns County 4-H Program looks forward to future accomplishments from these rising teams of 4-H equestrian enthusiast!
4-H Alumni Paige Merriam and 4-H Program Assistant Kellie Anderson have been working with the teams over the past several months in preparation for the State Horse Judging and Hippology contests. The St. Johns County 4-H Horse Program appreciates the local support from River View Ranch, Dreamcatcher Stables and Buck N Hand Stables for allowing the 4-H members to practice judging horses at their barns. The Horse Judging and Hippology contest is put on by the University of Florida Animal Science Department to provide 4-H youth an opportunity to demonstrate their knowledge and ability in the selection and evaluation of different horse breeds.
If you would like to see the St. Johns County 4-H youth in action, please plan to attend the St. Johns County 4-H Expo on Saturday, May 5, from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. at the St. Johns County Extension Office (3125 Agricultural Center Drive. This event will consist of 4-H project exhibits, educational interactive activities and information on 4-H clubs and camps. This event is free and open to the public.
If you are interested in learning more about the 4-H Program or 4-H volunteering opportunities, please contact the 4-H Office at the St. Johns County Extension Office (3125 Agricultural Center Drive, St. Augustine, 32092) at 904 209-0430. To find out more about the St. Johns County 4-H Program or to enroll, go to: http://sfyl.ifas.ufl.edu/stjohns/4-h-youth-development.
4-H and all programs and related activities sponsored for, or assisted by, St. Johns County/University of Florida/Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences are open to all persons with non-discrimination with respect to race, creed, color, religion, age, disability, sex, sexual orientation, marital status, national origin, political opinions or affiliations.