Recently, four Sebastian County youth had the opportunity to represent Arkansas at the National 4-H Livestock Skill-a-Thon in Louisville, Ky.

The team, comprised of Kyle Russell of Greenwood, Matt Beshears of Greenwood, Logan Reather of Mansfield, and William Howard of Hartford earned the spot after winning the state contest held at the University of Arkansas in July.

The 4-Hers had to learn several facets of the livestock industry covering 4 different species of animals including swine, beef, sheep, and goats. The contest was 5 hours long and covered 11 different sections including breeds, equipment, retail meat cuts, hay and wool judging, quality assurance, carcass evaluation, and livestock feeding with many specific and difficult tasks in each.

The team spent countless hours over the last couple of years achieving their goal of winning the state contest and being able to compete at the national level. The contest is held in conjunction with the North American International Livestock Expo, one of the largest livestock expos in the world.

While at the contest the participants had the opportunity to tour in and around Louisville including the Louisville Slugger manufacturing plant and museum and the Corvette Museum in Bowling Green. The youth represented their state and communities very well.

For more information on the 4-H program call your county extension office 479-996-4131. The Division of Agriculture offers its programs to all eligible persons regardless of race, color, national origin, religion, gender, age, disability, marital or veteran status, or any other legally protected status, and is an Affirmative Action/Equal Opportunity Employer