The Enid News and Eagle, Enid, OK

February 15, 2014

Local 4-H’ers attend Denver Western Roundup


Enid News and Eagle

ENID, Okla. — An Oklahoma delegation of 35, including 4-H club members, Oklahoma State University Cooperative Extension county educators, volunteer leaders and state staff took part recently in the 94th Denver Western Roundup.

More than 900 youths from more than 30 states, along with Alberta, Canada, attended this year’s event in the Mile High City. The conference takes place annually in January and coincides with the National Western Stock Show. The theme for this year’s Denver Western Roundup was “Shake, Rattle and Roll” and was aimed at leaving participants with the confidence that they have the opportunity to create unique experiences and thrive in their future.

Educational workshops are offered throughout the event that help 4-H members build upon the life skills they started building through their involvement in 4-H, said Tracy Beck, Oklahoma State University Cooperative Extension 4-H events coordinator.

“The workshops provided a learning experience for the youth and exposed them to topics ranging from communication and team building to leadership development. This conference also provides our youth with an opportunity to learn about new careers, as well as cultural developments in business, agriculture, science, industry, education and the arts,” Beck said. “Denver Western Roundup also serves as a platform for youth to compete nationally while encouraging teamwork and self-confidence, all while focusing on the 4-H mission mandates of science, engineering, technology, math, healthy living and citizenship.”

Oklahoma 4-H Youth Development Program offers many opportunities for youth to travel, and taking part in Denver Western Roundup gives the state’s delegates a chance to see a different part of the country.

Attending from Garfield County was Madison Deeds, Garber 4-H and daughter of Lacey Deeds and Hank Deeds; James Olmstead, Kremlin 4-H and son of Eddy and Paula Olmsteas, Enid; and Aaron Gabriel, Pioneer 4-H Club and son of Randy and Martha Gabriel, Hennessey.

Denver Western Roundup also featured a number of competitive events. Oklahoma’s delegation consisted of several teams that competed in some of the contests, including a livestock judging team from Woods County, an FCS Skill-A-Thon team from Bryan County and a meats judging team from Grady County. In addition, Hanna Taylor, Stephens County, competed individually in the horse communication competition.

“One of the great things about traveling to events such as Denver Western Roundup is that our youth get an opportunity to do some sightseeing and experience the local culture,” Beck said. “Some of the side trips included Denver’s Museum of Nature and Science, Coors Field, skiing at Winter Park Ski Resort, snowmobiling and dogsledding.

“Oklahoma 4-H’ers are extremely fortunate to be able to participate in such quality experiences as Denver Western Roundup,” Beck said.