April 10, 2007

Youth dairy conference teaches topics from pedigree to showmanship

WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. - The third annual Indiana Dairy Youth Conference will take place April 21 from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. at the Hendricks County Fairgrounds in Danville, Ind.  The hands-on dairy conference, co-sponsored by Purdue University Cooperative Extension Service, teaches youth the skills they need to have for a successful show season.

Participants will practice showmanship with two nationally known dairy judges, Mike Jones and Tim Timmons. Showmen will learn tips, such as whether it is best to walk forward or backward.

"Trends are changing," said Kelly Easterday, Purdue Extension educator and conference coordinator. "It used to be standard to walk backward when showing dairy cattle, but now the trend is moving toward walking forward. This conference will discuss industry trends and issues."

Speakers and their presentations include:

*  Mike Schutz, Purdue Extension dairy specialist, and Easterday - "Papers and numbers: What do they mean for my show heifer?"

*  Ken Kotouc, Cargill dairy management and nutrition consultant - "Creating a feed guide pyramid: Basic nutrition for your heifer."

*  Elizabeth Finke and Nathan Kuehnert, both past 4-H members from Bartholomew County and Allen County, respectively - "Grooming preparation leads to show ring success."

*  Jones and Timmons - "Backwards or forwards: Showmanship tips for the winner's circle."

There will be an ice cream break followed by a Mock Heifer Fun Auction. A heifer will be presented, and participants will be asked to explain why they would purchase that heifer.

Participants will be divided into two categories, one for third through sixth grade and one for seventh grade and older.  

Registration is $10 per person and can be paid up to the day of the event. The registration fee includes breaks, meals, handouts and a conference T-shirt. Those registering after Thursday (April 12) are not guaranteed a T-shirt.

To register and for more information, contact Easterday at (574) 372-2340 or by e-mail at keasterday@purdue.edu.

The Hendricks County Fairgrounds is located at 1900 E. Main St., Danville, IN 46122. Once on Main Street, the entrance is the first turn on the right directly across from the U.S. Post Office.

Sponsors include Cargill Animal Nutrition, Dairy Marketing Service LLC, Foremost Farms USA, Indiana Milk Quality Professionals, Indiana Professional Dairy Producers, Indiana State Dairy Association, Milk Promotion Services of Indiana Inc., Michigan Milk Producers and Prairie Farms.

Writer: Julie Douglas, (765) 496-1050, douglajk@purdue.edu

Source: Kelly Easterday, (574) 372-2340, keasterday@purdue.edu

Ag Communications: (765) 494-2722;
Beth Forbes, forbes@purdue.edu
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