MERIDIAN — Special to The Star
Sarah Burns a Lauderdale County 4-H member and Collinsville resident, represented Lauderdale County and Mississippi in the Western National Roundup in Denver, Colo., in early January.
Sarah competed in the Horse Public Speaking contest with her speech entitled “Horse Slaughter – The Solution to Horse Abuse." Burns was awarded second place overall at this prestigious national contest.
More than 900 youth from more than 30 states, along with some from Alberta, Canada, attended the Western National Roundup Jan. 8-12 Denver.
The Conference, now in its 94th year, is held annually in early January, coinciding with the National Western Stock Show. This year’s theme of “Shake Rattle and Roll” was aimed at leaving participants with the confidence that they have the opportunity to create unique experiences and thrive in their self-defined future through FFA and 4-H.
Both 4-H and FFA members between the ages of 14 and 19 have the opportunity to qualify for roundup by winning their home state’s contest or being chosen as a state delegate.
The competitions at Western National Roundup included horse and livestock judging, livestock quiz bowl, hippology, horse demonstrations and public speaking, parliamentary procedure, family consumer sciences presentations, skill-a-thon, and bowl, consumer decision making, public speaking prepared and impromptu, parliamentary procedure, and meats identification.
Workshops offered throughout the week provided a learning experience for the youths, exposing them to topics ranging from communication and team building to leadership development. Youth participants develop a mastery of their respective subject matters, but more importantly, gain life-long skills.
Such skills as public speaking, professionalism, and good sportsmanship, along with the memories and new friendships, will outlast the trophies and ribbons that were won.