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Local 4-H’ers collect awards

CONWAY – Once every 16 years: that’s how often the chance comes along for each county in the Northeast District of NC Cooperative Extension to host 4-H Activity Day.

This year it was Northampton County’s turn as the event took place at Conway Middle School on June 24.

One hundred thirty- seven 4-Her’s from 16 different counties gave 5- 12 minute long illustrated talks on a variety of topics, ranging from Citizenship and civic responsibility, fruit and vegetable use, health and fitness, pork cookery, etc.

The 9-18 year old 4-Her’s were the winners from their counties. The gold and silver winners from this district event will advance to the state competition, which will be held at N.C. State University in July.

Also, 63 Cloverbuds, children ages 5-8 who gave presentations for practice, but were not old enough to compete, were at the event. All of these children received prizes for participation.

Children from Gates, Hertford, Northampton and Bertie counties were among those to attend the event.

Winners from Gates County included Jeremy A. Smith, who won the bronze award in the beef char grill category, 14-18 age bracket; Thomas Robinson, the gold award winner in the dairy foods category, 9-10 age group; Derrick Daniels, who was awarded the bronze prize for the chicken barbeque category in the 14-18 year-old division; and Leslie Wolfrey, the silver award winner for the health and fitness category in the 9-10 age bracket.

Other winners from Gates were Dejia Gainey, who received the gold award in the 9-10 year-old division of the hospitality, etiquette and social grace category; Brian Holley, the silver winner in the pork cookery category, 14-18 age group; and Josh Cross and Jevon Roscoe, who worked as a team to win the silver award in the safety category, 11-13 age bracket.

4-H winners from Hertford County were Timothy Lassiter, silver winner in the beef char grill category, 14-18 age bracket; and Anthony Lassiter, the silver winner in the expressive arts and communications category, from the 11-13 age group.

Winners from Northampton County included Kendrell Green, gold winner in the beef char grill, 14- 18 age bracket; Gabrielle Harris, winner of the gold in the bread category, 9-10 year-old division; Jasmine Harris, the gold winner in the bread category, 14-18 age group; Jarren Taylor, winner of the silver award in the chicken barbecue category, 14-18 age group; and Jasmine Howard, gold winner in the fruit and vegetable use category, 14-18 year-old division.

Other winners from Northampton included Vatrice Taylor, who received the silver award in the dairy foods category, 9-10 age division; Trey Taylor, bronze winner in the fruit and vegetable use category, 11-13 age bracket; Keelie Futrell, winner of the silver award in the health and fitness category, 14-18 age group; Devin Johnson, gold winner in the peanut foods category, 9-10 age division; Taylor Edwards, gold winner in the pork cookery category, 14-18 age bracket; Sarah Taylor Best and Brittany Bolton, who worked as a team to claim the gold award in the bugs and bees category, 14-18 age group; and Shannon Harris, gold winner in the poultry production and preparation category, age 9-10 division.

Bertie County winners included Leslie Briley, the gold winner in the 21st century communications category, 14-18 age group; Keana Bell, winner of the gold award in the bread category, 11-13 year-old division; Terez Heckstall, winner of the silver award in expressive arts and communications, 14- 18 age bracket; and Keron Bass, gold winner in the fabric and fashion design category, 14-18 age group.

Other Bertie winners included Lauren Dunlow, who won gold in the forestry and wildlife division, 9-10 age group; Sezman Williams, gold winner in public speaking, 14- 18 age group; and Chris Perry, winner of the gold award in the science and technology category, 14- 18 age bracket.

Lacey Carawan, a 12- year- old 4-Her from Pasquotank County, gave her presentation in the health and fitness category on organ donation.

According to Carawan, last year 3,000 people in the United States received organ transplants.

She also described how donations benefit people. For example the cornea can help restore sight, bone can be used for reconstructive purposed and the heart aids people with in- stage heart disease.

In addition, Carawan explained how to become an organ donor. First, the person must indicate it on his driver’s license. Then they must obtain an organ donation card.

Carawan described the importance of people telling their families the desire to become and organ donor. Also individuals can join donor registries.

She added that the kidney is the most donated organ.

Carawan said she became interested in the topic of organ donation because her grandmother passed away recently, but her organs were not healthy enough to donate.

Carolyn Sawyer, a 12- year- old from Camden County, gave her presentation in the health and fitness category on sport injuries.

According to Sawyer, the main sport injuries are runner’s knee, sprained ankle and frozen shoulder. She added that injury rates are reduced by 25 percent when the athlete is in the proper physical condition, abides by the rules of sport, wears appropriate safety gear, gets rest, always warms up and avoids playing when too tired or in pain.

She said she became interested in her topic because she loves to play sports and has seen many people face these types of injuries, although she has been fortunate to never experience one personally. Sawyer added that when she grows up she is interested in the career of sports management.

Danielle Edwards of Perquimans County gave her presentation, “Putting your best hoof forward,” in the horse category.

Edwards explained the importance of grooming your horse and keeping it clean. She said it creates bond with horse; the rider can check for cuts and injuries on the horse and the horse’s coat condition.

Edwards demonstrated how to use various grooming tools such as curry combs, soft and hard brushes, sweat scrapers and hoof picks.

Kellen Long, a 12- year- old from Pasquotank County, gave her presentation about special landscaping for special people in the landscaping category.

Long said she became interested in her topic because she likes to help people and she thinks it is a shame when people become elderly or physically disabled and are not able to work in their yard anymore.

Ashley Harris, President of the NED 4-H Council and a Northampton County 4-Her, has been involved in 4-H for 11 years. She sang in the talent show at activity day.

“I like the talent show because you can pick basically any talent that you want,” she said.

Jarren Taylor, a 16- year- old from Northampton County, cooked barbeque chicken in the outdoor cooking competition.

“I like 4-H because it lets you have a free mind, you can help people and you can do outdoor stuff,” he said.

“4-H also allows me to participate in a variety of hands on activities.”

Taylor, who has been involved in 4-H for six years, says it feels good to cook.

“I like to know that I can survive,” he said.

Taylor Edwards, a 15- year- old from Northampton County who has been involved in 4-H for five years, cooked pork tenderloin.

“I like 4-H because it gives me a chance to learn new things and to meet new people,” he said. “I like cooking because it gives me a chance to do my own thing; this recipe is a mixture of different recipes.”

Kelina Spence, of Currituck County, cooked Hawaiian Chicken.

“I like 4-H because I like to learn more,” she said “I love cooking and this is my favorite recipe.”

Kendrell Green, a 16- year- old from Northampton County, fixed beef kabobs.

“I like everything about 4-H, especially the trips and 4-H camps,” he said. “My dad taught me how to cook; I learned by watching him.”

Ashley Warden, who has been in 4-H for two years and is from Pasquotank County, cooked barbeque chicken.

“I like to go on trips and play with animals,” said Warden. “This year I will be showing a lamb in the 4-H show.”

Warden added that she learned how to cook by trying it on her own and by learning some from her dad, as well.

Leslie Briley, a 15- year- old from Bertie County, gave her presentation on helpful tips for people interested in photography. Briley also turns some of her photographs into cards and sells them.

“It’s fun to capture shots,” she said. “My favorite photographs to take are close up shots, especially of bugs and flowers.

Briley first became interested in photography in December 2006 when she received her first camera and she likes 4-H because it gives her a chance to meet new people.

“4-H benefits kids in ways they won’t understand until they are older,” said Kyleen Burgess, 4-H agent in Northampton County. “The kids learn valuable life skills and 4-H teaches them how to present in front of people and prepares them for college.

Burgess also mentioned that she was involved in 4-H when she was a child.

“I am a product of 4-H,” she said. “I was involved in public speaking.”

“4-H benefits kids because they gain life skills, self confidence, self concept and the ability to excel in a variety of avenues in a non- threatening way,” said Reba Green- Holley, the Gates and Hertford County Extension Director.

“The skills these children learn transfer to jobs and give them the confidence to stand before strangers.”

Green-Holley added, “4-H also allows kids who may not be A and A/B students the opportunity to excel; it shows them they are good at something.”

The Northeast District Extension Director, Dr. Wanda Sykes, said she was involved in 4-H when she was a child. “You never forget your 4-H experience; it is one of the reasons I went into extension.”