While we wrap up a summer filled with fairs and fun, we wanted to spotlight a competition that took place at the Newaygo County Fair this year. GreenStone’s Hart Branch has partnered with the Newago County 4-H Board to sponsor a beef heifer calf for the past several years. Sponsoring this calf means that individuals are chosen to win it based on certain levels of criteria such as how involved they are in their community, what breed of calf they want to win, and what they will end up doing with the calf if they win.
Each participant is required to write an essay, and a panel of judges reads those before the face-to-face interviews take place. After this, in the interview the judges score based on how well their essay was written, how well they interviewed, and what their intentions are with the beef heifer if they were to win. Kim Sadler, Traditional Financial Services Officer, and Amy Noonan, Customer Service Representative for GreenStone, are the judges who take turns asking the kids questions that have to deal with community involvement and their 4-H experience. These questions change each year, so that they stay relevant and interactive.
After the judges consult to make their decision, the winner is announced at the Beef Calf Award Ceremony. In the meantime, Matt Kempf, President of Newaygo County Fair 4-H Board, works on finding the beef heifer to be awarded at the ceremony. Each of the runner-ups get a jacket with their names on them, the Newaygo County Fair logo on the back, and the GreenStone logo on the sleeve.
The year’s winner was Brenden Dirks. He was awarded a Hereford calf, and he was overjoyed. Congratulations to you, Brenden, on all your hard work!