University of Vermont

4-H'ers Compete at Local Dairy Show

Jeremy Cross, Reading (left) and Dominic Palazzo, Woodstock, both members of the Top of the World 4-H Club, get ready for the Jersey fall calf class at the Central and Southeast Region 4-H Dairy Show, held July 16-17 in Tunbridge. (Lisa Muzzey/UVM Extension 4-H)

Tunbridge--Several Orange and Windsor County 4-H dairy club members had an "udderly" great time competing at the Central and Southeast Region 4-H Dairy Show, July 16-17, in Tunbridge.

Forty-one youths from six different clubs participated in the annual event, hosted by University of Vermont Extension 4-H at the Tunbridge Fairgrounds. Breakfast was courtesy of the Orange and Windsor County Farm Bureaus.

In addition to showing their animals, the 4-H'ers also took part in workshops on barn fire safety with Geoff Nelson of Co-operative Insurance Companies, Inc., and how to tell their dairy story to the public with Laura Hardie, New England Dairy and Food Council and the New England Dairy Promotion Board.

Adam Liddle of Liddle-Holme Farm in Argyle, New York, was the judge for the show. He was assisted by 4-H'ers Annabelle and Kalynn Messier of Randolph Center who handed out ribbons. Their brother Wyatt volunteered as the show ring assistant to help younger youths. South Royalton 4-H parent Dan Flint was responsible for keeping the show ring clean.

In the fitting and showmanship competitions participants were evaluated on their poise and handling and presentation of their animals. Earning championships in these competitions were:

  • SENIOR (14-18): Champion--Keenan Thygesen, Tunbridge. Reserve Champion--Brennan Vaughan, East Thetford. Keenan also was awarded the Dick Dodge Memorial Award for placing first overall of all competitors in fitting and showmanship.
  • ROOKIE (11-18 and first-time participant in a 4-H dairy show): Champion--Amanda Ferris, Braintree; Reserve Champion--Kerridwyn Wilbur, North Hartland
  • JUNIOR (11-13): Champion--Delia Morgan, Woodstock; Reserve Champion--MacKenzie Bushey, Springfield
  • BEGINNER (8-10): Champion--Maeve Leslie-Gawalt, Hartland; Reserve Champion--Dani Flint, South Royalton
  • NOVICE (8-10 and first-time participant in a 4-H dairy show): Champion--Sylvia Johnson, Tunbridge; Reserve Champion--Morgan Caron, Tunbridge

In conformation classes, arranged by breed and age of the animal, the judge looked at the physical structure, condition and appearance of the animal. The following 4-H'ers were named breed champions:

  • AYRSHIRE: Junior Champion and Grand Champion--Morgan Conant, Randolph Center, with her winter calf; Junior Reserve Champion--Katherine Howard, East Thetford, with her fall calf
  • BROWN SWISS: Junior and Grand Champion--Keenan Thygesen, Tunbridge, with his spring calf
  • GUERNSEY: Junior Champion and Grand Champion--Sylvia Johnson, Tunbridge, with her winter calf
  • HOLSTEIN: Senior and Grand Champion--Maeve Leslie-Gawalt, Hartland, with her two-year-old cow; Senior Reserve Champion--Dylan Slack, Bethel, with his three-year-old cow; Junior Champion--Brennan Vaughan, East Thetford, with his winter yearling heifer; Junior Reserve Champion--Keenan Thygesen, Tunbridge, with his fall yearling heifer
  • JERSEY: Senior Champion and Grand Champion--Delia Morgan, Woodstock, with her two-year-old cow; Senior Reserve Champion--Emily Surrell, Windsor, with her three-year-old cow; Junior Champion--Keenan Thygesen, Tunbridge, with his fall calf; Junior Reserve Champion--Andrew Fors, Randolph, with his fall yearling heifer

Delia Morgan was named Supreme Champion of all Breeds with her Grand Champion Jersey. She also won the 2018 Vermont Jersey Breeders Association 4-H Grand Champion Jersey Award.

The Herdsmanship Award for best club herd went to the Hartland Cattle Club of Hartland. The award is sponsored by the Frazer Insurance Agency of Windsor.

Purple rosette ribbons were awarded to the 4-H'ers with the top dairy project record books in their division. In Orange County, winners were Katherine Howard, Thetford Center (Senior), Abby Carson, Newbury (Junior) and Charles Young, Randolph (Beginner). For Windsor County Hannah Dolloff, Springfield, won the Senior Division with Ke'anolani Thompson-Mahi, Sharon, winning the Junior Division and Maeve Leslie-Gawalt, Hartland, Beginners.

To learn more about the 4-H dairy program in Orange County, contact Allison Smith at For Windsor County, contact Lisa Muzzey at