Milam youth earn top spots in local range ID, evaluation contests
O n April 13, the 1st annual Open Invitational 4-H and FFA Contests for Range and Pasture Plant Identification and Range Evaluation Contest was sponsored by Cody Fowler-Hackamore Ranch in Milam County. Thirty four youth and nine adults competed in the contests.
Cody and Albina Fowler of Hackamore Ranch have an interest in youth and ecology, so their non-profit organization provided two $5,000 scholarships to high point senior participants along with belt buckles for first place awards, second place medals and plaques for third to 20th places.
A big thank you goes out to Hackamore Ranch for providing an outstanding learning experience for the youth of Milam County as well as youth from Comal, Bosque, Crockett, Frio, Jim Wells and Kendall counties during the inaugural contests.
One of the $5,000 scholarships presented by Hackamore Ranch was won by Milam County 4-H’er Karl Woelfel from Thorndale. Karl was the first place senior individual in the Range and Pasture Plant Identification Contest.
The second $5,000 scholarship presented by Hackamore Ranch was won by Bosque County 4-H’er Gramm Guillory. Gramm was the first place senior individual in the Range Evaluation contest.
Milam County also won first team and four of the five high point individual honors in the Range and Pasture Identification Contest.
First place senior team members were Karl Woelfel, Collin Kostroun, Devin Fisher and Cheyenne McWilliams.
Senior individual placings were: Karl Woelfel, first; Collin Kostroun, second; Devin Fisher, third; Cheyenne McWilliams, fourth, all of Milam County, and Corban Hemphill, Frio County, fifth place..
In the junior division, Milam County 4-H’ers took the top three team awards plus a number of individual awards. The first place teams was Heath Hollas, Kaylee Jackson, Mason Lindig and Patrick Cobb; second place of Rebecca Kostroun, Neeraj Bhakta and Ethan Stork; third place team of Kassidy Hundle, Kyrene Jackson and Preston Rose.
Mi lam Count y indiv idual awards included Mason Lindig, second; Patrick Cobb, fourth; Heath Hollas, fifth; Kaylee Jackson, sixth; Kassidy Hundle, seventh; Rebecca Kostroun, eighth; Neeraj Bhakta, ninth; Ethan Stork, 10th; Kyrene Jackson, 11th; Preston Rose, 16th.
Milam County Beginner J.W. Hollas also participated in the contest for practice.
Other Milam County individual awards in the range evaluation contest included a sixth place by Madeline Kostroun.
ADULT CONTEST—Adults took the Range and Pasture Plant Identification contest as well as the Range Evaluation contest to improve their abilities to teach and train youth on Range Management topics.
In the adult division of Range and Pasture Plant Identification Contest, all but one participant was from Milam County. First place was won by Irby McWilliams, followed by Priscilla Jackson in second, Janet Hundle in third, Liz Kalinec of Jim Wells County in fourth, Kevin Lindig in fifth and Melvin Hundle, sixth.
In the Adult division of the Range Evaluation Contest, Carlon Stapper of Crockett County was first, follwed by Bosque County’s Kerri Kretzmeier and Boots Kretzmeier finishing in second and third place, respectively.
THANK YOU—Without the interest and generous donation of Cody and Albina Fowler of Hackamore Ranch, we would not have been able to conduct these outstanding contests. We are one of only a few contests with scholarships for these areas of interest.
Along with Hackamore Ranch, we would like to thank Bob McClaren owner of 44 Farms and James Burks, General Manager, for providing the outstanding facilities and La Copa Ranch owners Larry and Priscilla Jackson for providing a delicious lunch for all participants and adults at the contests.
We would also like to thank Dr. Barron Rector, Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service Range Management Specialist, for preparing and conducting both contests. Hackamore Ranch presented Dr. Rector with a belt buckle for his many long hours of work preparing for these contests and others he conducts throughout the state.
Milam County would like to thank Irby McWilliams, our coach for Range Management project work for planting the seed of a locally sponsored statewide contest to help the youth of Milam County and across the state. Irby works many hours to prepare 4-H teams for contests and he was able to work with Cody and Albina Fowler of Hackamore Ranch and others to make this contest a reality. He was also able to recruit a number of