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4–H holds annual awards gala

Editor's Note: To see all the photos from the 4–H Awards night click on "Photos" to the left of the screen and look for 4–H Awards 2014 Gallery

By Ken Johnston
The largest crowd in years, about 160 strong, gathered at Stratton’s Millennium Hall this past Friday to honour 4–H members for their accomplishments in 2013.
The annual Rainy River District 4–H Association (RRD4HA) awards night was changed up a bit this year to try and get more people interested in the organization. The first change took place last year with the starting of the new to Ontario Cloverbuds program.
The Cloverbud program is an opportunity for youth ages 6–8 to learn about all facets of 4-H Ontario projects. RRDRHA Executive member Kim Desserre said, “We had parents that were interested in getting their kids involved in 4–H at an earlier age. They volunteered to help lead a new Cloverbud program and we had nine kids enrol!”
Cloverbuds is a “pre-4–H” program, kind of like pre-school for 4–H. By starting them early it is hoped that more kids will continue right on into the regular 4–H program.
“This exciting addition to 4-H Ontario is a hands-on, activity-based program that covers a wide variety of topics, including agriculture, food, crafts, life-skills, environment and science. By participating in the Cloverbud program, participants are able to get a taste for the topics covered in 4-H projects while developing an understanding of 4-H values,” said 4–H Ontario.
The other change was opening up the awards dinner free of charge to not only 4–H members but their families as well. Last year there were less than 100 in attendance. This year about 162 attended.
After a delicious meal, the main purpose for the evening began... awards were handed out!
The top award for the night, The DeGagne Award, was presented to the Beef Club member who accumulated the greatest number of points in the past three years of Beef Club work. They receive a trophy and $250! This year’s winner is Aaron Bujold.
Winning the RR Hereford Assoc. 4–H Carcass Award for the highest grading of a Market Steer with Hereford influence was Hayden Haw. He received a plaque and $200.
The Ontario Plowmen’s Assoc. Award was presented to Connor Bujold. He received $100 plus a certificate.
Years of Dedication
Four individuals were recognized for their years of commitment to 4–H as leaders. Presented in five year increments were the following:
-Ellen Chjoko-Bolec-35 years
-Louise Bliss-25 years
-Kathy Stahn-10 years
-Murray McDonald-5 years
Project Awards
Six Projects Pin
Morgan Desserre, Alanna Gerula, Mackenzie Jolicouer, Brayden Kreger, Andrea Schram, Nick Teeple, Aynsley Williams and Madison Williams.
18 Projects
Jordan Desserre received a 4–H hoodie.

Provincial Award
A new Ontario 4–H Club Leader Award was presented to Krista Williams. Only six such awards are presented each year; one for each region of 4–H in the province.
Other Awards
•Jordan Desserre and Jessica Haw received Youth Leadership Awards
•Nadine Gerula, Angela Haw, Mary Ann Haw, Angela Halverson and Tami LeBlanc were all honoured as First Year Volunteers.
•Kailey Croswell, Erika Gerula, Missy Hammond, Micaela Jolicouer, Ayden Gushulak-Kelly, Tanner Neilson, Brett Schram and Lynelle Westover received plaques and t-shirts for being first year 4–H members.
•The newly created Cloverbuds all received t-shirts and trophies. They are Hailey Bragg, Christina Gerula, Haylee Hasiuk, Crenna Haw, Kallahan LeBlanc, Kennah LeBlanc, Victoria Pollard, Tala Quran and Serena Teeple.
Breed Awards
•Ontario Angus Assoc. Awards were presented to Morgan Haw, Kylie Nordin, Leroy Rempel, Andrea Schram, Ross Steele and Cassidy Teeple.
•Ontario Charolais Assoc. Awards were presented to Jennifer Hammond, Missy Hammond, Victoria Hammond and Nick Teeple.
•Canadian Galloway Assoc. Award presented to Samantha Stahn.
•Easter Gelbvieh Assoc. Award presented to Timothy Rempel.
•Ont. Hereford Assoc. Awards presented to Aaron Bujold, Connor Bujold, Malena Flatt, Hayden Haw, Morgan Kreger, Aynsley Williams and Madison Williams.
•Ont. Jr. Limousin Assoc. Awards presented to Ryan Bodnar, Ayden Gushulak-Kelly, Jessica Haw, Braydon Kreger and R.J. McDonald.
•Ont. Simmental Assoc. Awards presented to Ashley Croswell, Kailey Croswell, Taylor Croswell, Alanna Gerula, Katie Hay, Savannah Hughes, Ben Miller and Myan Miller.
•RR Cattlemen’s Assoc. Awards for first year Beef Club members presented to Kailey Croswell, Ayden Gushulak-Kelly, Jennifer Hammond, Missy Hammond, Victoria Hammond, Hayden Haw, Morgan Kreger, Andrea Schram, Aynsley Williams and Madison Williams.
Beef Book Awards
•Receiving $150 and $100 respectively for 1st and 2nd in Junior Book Awards is Morgan Haw and Morgan Kreger. In the Senior division it was R.J. McDonald and Braydon Kreger.
Emo Fair Showmanship Awards
1st-Jessica Haw
2nd-Savanah Hughes
1st-Ryan Bodnar
2nd-Aaron Bujold
1st-Leroy Rempel
2nd-Taylor Croswell
Top rookies
1st-Kailey Croswell
2nd-Ayden Gushulak-Kelly
Jordan Desserre also spoke to the audience about the six provincial leadership events he attended. He encouraged fellow 4–H members to participate in them when given the opportunity. “They were fun and helped me develop leadership techniques... and will change your life for the better.”