Eight Teton County 4-H members attended Montana 4-H Congress at MSU Bozeman in July. They were chaperoned by Jane Wolery, MSU Extension Agent and Hayley Ries, MSU Extension Intern. Several competitions are held during the event and Teton County 4-H youth shone.

Maggie Toeckes participates in the Fashion Revue at the 2021 Montana 4-H Congress. (Photo: Jane Wolery, MSU Extension)

Maggie Toeckes placed first in the fashion revue contest modeling a beautiful black wool dress and blue and black checked wool fully lined jacket. The judges evaluate competitions on their sewing skills, style, poise, interview, leadership, and service in the textile area. By placing first in this competition, Toeckes has earned the right to travel to National 4-H Congress.

Justin Forseth competed and placed first in the video contest showing his skills in capturing video with a wide range of equipment, including drones, showing numerous shots of farm and ranch life along the Rocky Mountains. Forseth was evaluated on editing, music, voiceover, and general video production concepts. Forseth was a 2020 State 4-H Award winner in technology and video production and as such qualified for a trip to National 4-H Congress, which was not held due to the pandemic. It is currently uncertain whether both Toeckes and Forseth will be able to represent Teton County 4-H at the national event.

Justin Forseth placed 1st in the video contest, and Luke Ostberg was 3rd in Public Speaking. (Photo: Jane Wolery, MSU Extension)

Luke Ostberg was a first-time 4-H Congress attendee and competed in public speaking with an insightful presentation and perspective with his speech entitled, "How Actions are the Only Way to Create What We Imagine." Ostberg placed third in the state competition.

Madeline Konen honed her skills in the career communications area with a job application, cover letter, resume, and interview. The judges in this contest were very impressed and scoring was tight. Konen placed second in the statewide lineup in this competition.

Jersey Somerfeld earned 3rd Place with her horse-themed quilt. Photo: Jane Wolery, MSU Extension.

Jersey Somerfeld represented in the quilt contest showing her sewing talents and design abilities. Her quilt design incorporated her love of horses. She placed third overall in that contest.

Myles Allen, Golden Holmquist, and Presley Holmquist rounded out the delegation. During the competition rounds, each assisted organizers of the events. Wolery ran the daylong communications contest with demonstrations and illustrated talks and was grateful to have both Holmquists assist in judges’ orientation, room arrangements, and contestant management. The Teton County delegation was joined by Grace Rooney from Glacier County who competed in demonstrations.

Four 4-H members and alumni from Teton County were awarded scholarships at 4-H Congress. Those receiving scholarships were Watson Snyder, Abigail (Konen) Moore, Justin Forseth, and Luke Ostberg. Recipients were invited to a Scholarship banquet to meet and thank their scholarship donors.

Members enjoyed an excellent three-hour highly engaging and interactive course on leadership, communication, and facilitation. All eight of the Congress attendees were also Teton County 4-H Camp Counselors who put their training into use a week later at 4-H camp.

All members attended an assortment of workshops with topics such as bees, social media management, geocaching, backpacking, water quality, parliamentary procedure, and more. Participants had many opportunities to learn from others while networking with peers from all over the state.

- By Jane Wolery, MSU Extension Teton County Agent -