January and February Happenings with The Millarville-Stockland 4-H Beef Club

Finn Blatz: Club Reporter

The Millarville Stockland 4-H Club had a busy January and February filled with workshops, clinics, and competitions. Our club had a public speaking workshop put on by the University of Calgary 4-H Club to help us to present our speeches at our competition in February. Three stations were set up to help members understand the rules on speeches and events, practice impromptu speeches, and make a continuous story to help when members present their impromptus. This workshop helped many members improve their speaking skills and prepare for the club competition in just a few weeks. Thank you to the U of C 4-H Club for sharing their public speaking knowledge with us.

Later in January, our club had a showmanship clinic at Threepoint Stables. Members brought their steer and heifer projects to practice showing and improve their skills in the showring. Our General Leader, Peter Watkins gave us a lot of tips and tricks on how to show a 4-H animal that helped everyone from new to experienced members. The younger members had an older member partner up for the first half of the clinic, which was very helpful. The amount of improvement from us all was immense and will help us to prepare for shows later in the year, like our Club Achievement Day and 4-H on Parade. Showmanship can be confusing with all the rules and etiquette involved and more practice helps us get comfortable and joyful when showing our animals. Thank you to Foothills County for allowing us to use their portable cattle scale at our clinic.

Finally, in February, our club held our public speaking competition at the Millarville Racetrack Hall. Members have been preparing speeches to present to the club, as well as the judges. There were great speeches from all members. Also, members had to present a short impromptu speech on a random topic to test the speakers’ quick thinking and fluidity. There were many great impromptus from the speakers who rarely slipped up from the pressure and gave a great 1-minute impromptu speech with minimal preparation time. The skill of all the members was so close, there was even a 3-way tie inthe senior group, and a speak-off had to take place to determine the placing. It was a great day to celebrate the hard work and practice from all the members. The top two speakers from each age level will move on to Areas in March. The top Junior speakers were Tanner Watkins & Maddie Watkins with alternate, Jack McWhir. Clara Blatz & Jessie Blatz were the top two Intermediate speakers and alternate, Justin Watkins. Top Senior speakers, Emma Campbell and Harry Rawn with alternate, Finn  Blatz will test their skills next month.

This was a packed time for the Millarville Stockland Beef Club, with many events and competitions. Members learned a lot from 4-H, from speaking in public to showing cattle. Our public speaking skills were even put to the test and allowed members to show off their hard work on their speeches. This was a busy time for our club, as always, throw in some calving and miserable cold weather, we are all looking forward to spring.