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Wisconsin Holstein Juniors Ride the Wave at 2016 Junior Convention

Baraboo, Wis. – January 11, 2016...The annual Wisconsin Junior Holstein Convention was hosted by the Chippewa County juniors in Wisconsin Dells, Wis., at Glacier Canyon Lodge, January 8-10, 2016. Over 500 Holstein members, chaperones, and volunteers were in attendance to help make the weekend a huge success.

Throughout the convention junior members participated in numerous contests, including speaking, arts and crafts, photography, dairy jeopardy and dairy bowl. The largest competition of the weekend was dairy bowl, in which 34 junior, 22 senior, and 10 rookie teams competed. 

Over 50 volunteers helped coordinate dairy bowl matches, dairy jeopardy contests, and the speaking contest. As the dairy bowl contest came to a close, the Manitowoc County juniors took top honors in the junior division defeating Dodge County in two matches, and the Dane County seniors defeated another tough Dodge County team to earn the honor to represent Wisconsin at the National Holstein Convention in New York. Manitowoc County's team included Clarissa and Garrett Ulness, Brianna Meyer and Lauren Siemers. Dane County's team was comprised of Lizi and Zach Endres, Joseph Opsal and Allie Breunig.

All juniors at convention had the chance to compete in the dairy jeopardy competition. The top competitor in each of three age brackets has the opportunity to compete at the national level. Qualifying this year was Lauren Siemers of Manitowoc County in the junior division,Kylie Nickels of Dodge County in the intermediate division, and Sam Minch of Wood County in the senior division. Placing second and third in the junior division were Jared Abraham of Sheboygan County and Clarissa Ulness of Manitowoc County. In the intermediate division, Jake Siemers of Manitowoc County took second, and Dawson Nickels of Dodge County was third. In the senior division, Danielle and Brad Warmka of Dodge County placed second and third, respectively.

In the speaking contest, Wisconsin can send up to three delegates in each division to compete at National Convention. To compete, youth must prepare a speech on a topic related to the dairy industry at a length assigned to their specific age division. Heading to National Convention this year are Brianna Meyer of Calumet County, Mae Buttles of St. Croix County, and Ava Booth of Sheboygan County in the junior division. Eva Doornink of Pierce County, Courtney Moser of Vernon County, and Tyler Giddings of Marathon County qualified in the intermediate division. Representing the senior division will be Kelsey Cramer of Green County, Kati Kindschuh of Fond du Lac County and Elizabeth Sarbacker of Dane County.

On Saturday evening, the annual banquet was held to honor outstanding juniors in the Association. Charlie Hamilton of Grant County and Jessica Pralle of Clark County claimed the most prestigious honor, being named Outstanding Holstein Boy and Girl. These individuals have excelled in their Holstein programs and have been an asset to the Association and dairy industry as a whole. Also receiving honors were 17 other Distinguished Junior Members, 15 Young Distinguished Junior Member winners, and 14 Twelve & Under Recognition winners, all of which excelled in their Wisconsin Holstein activities in 2015.

In addition to Charlie and Jessica, 2015 Distinguished Junior Holstein Members included Kayla Krueger of Waupaca County, Elizabeth Sarbacker of Dane County, Andy Sell of Dodge County, Matthew Kramer of Fond du Lac County, Lizi Endres of Dane County, Kristen Broege of Rock County, Kelsey Cramer of Green County, Valerie Kramer of Fond du Lac County, Carley Krull of Jefferson County, Katherine Larson of Vernon County, Bethany Marcks of Outagamie County, Austin Nauman of Monroe County, Nicole Pralle of Clark County, Jordan Siemers of Manitowoc County, Brooke Trustem of Rock County, Logan Voigts of Lafayette County and Danielle Warmka of Dodge County.

The Young Distinguished Junior Holstein Members include Kylie Nickels of Dodge County, Dawson Nickels of Dodge County, Ben Kronberg of Rock County, Lindsey Sarbacker of Dane County, Dylan Steiner of Green County, Hannah Hockerman of Marquette County, Elise Bleck of Sheboygan County, Cole Booth of Sheboygan County, Drew Noble of Lafayette County, McKenzie Calvert of Lafayette County, Madison Calvert of Lafayette County, Hannah Nelson of Pierce County, Kalista Hodorff of Fond du Lac County, Kaianne Hodorff of Fond du Lac County, and Erin Strauss of Jefferson County.

Finally, 12 & Under Member Recognition was awarded to Colton Brandel of Jefferson County, Clarissa Ulness of Manitowoc County, Brianna Meyer of Calumet County, Jacob Harbaugh of Shawano County, Emily Stumpf of Fond du Lac County, Kaydence Hodorff of Fond du Lac County, Ava Booth of Sheboygan County, Brady Bleck of Sheboygan County, Garrett Ulness of Manitowoc County, Cathryn Gunst of Waushara County, Christopher Gunst of Waushara County, Ainsley Noble of Grant County, Emma Dorshorst of Wood County, and Abby Giddings of Marathon County.

Of the exceptional youth recognized, four representatives in the Distinguished and Young Distinguished Member categories were selected to submit award forms to the national level with hopes of being honored at the National Convention. Jordan Siemers of Manitowoc County, Matthew Kramer of Fond du Lac County, Elizabeth Sarbacker of Dane County, and Nicole Pralle of Clark County were all chosen to represent Wisconsin as Distinguished Junior Members. The Young Distinguished Member delegates include Kalista Hodorff of Fond du Lac County, Kaianne Hodorff of Fond du Lac County, Kylie Nickels of Dodge County, and Hannah Nelson of Pierce County.

The 2016 Wisconsin Holstein Princess and Attendant were also crowned at the banquet on Saturday evening. This year, Kati Kindschuh of Fond du Lac County will serve as the WHA Princess, and Paige Nelson of Pierce County will join her as the WHA Princess Attendant.

Special recognition is given to youth leaders that have been nominated by youth in the Junior Holstein Association and selected by the Junior Activities Committee. This year's WHY (Wisconsin Holstein Youth) Friends were Laura Daniels of Iowa County in the five year and under division, and Maureen DeBruin of Jefferson County in the six years and over division.

Wisconsin Holstein awarded over $16,000 in scholarships this year, and an auction was held to raise funds for future awards. Donated items auctioned off included UW-Madison Men's Hockey tickets donated by Larry Nelson, a certificate for a Bonnie Mohr print, UW-Madison Men's Basketball tickets donated by Corey Geiger and Krista Knigge, another pair of men's basketball tickets donated by the Rob Rippchen family, a stay at the "Doctor's House" by Daluge Travel, a Kalahari Resort stay donated by Kalahari Resort, a pair of club-level Brewers tickets donated by the Milwaukee Brewers, and a session from Farmgirl Photography donated by Danae Bauer. Funds from these items, along with a silent auction, are put into the WHA scholarship fund, and over $2,400 was added this year. High school seniors, short course, and two and four year college students that are members of WHA are all eligible for these scholarships.

Throughout the convention, youth were recognized for other outstanding achievements, including Junior Progressive Breeder and Long Range Production animals producing 100,000 to over 200,000 pounds of milk over their lifetime. Those receiving Junior Progressive Breeder Awards include Madison, McKenzie and Payton Calvert of Lafayette County, Nathan Cordes of Barron County, Carmen Haack of Shawano County, Charles Hamilton of Grant County, Jacob Harbaugh of Shawano County, Kaianne Hodorff of Fond du Lac County, Kalista Hodorff of Fond du Lac County, Evan Jauquet of Shawano County, Mason Jauquet of Shawano County, Matthew Kramer of Fond du Lac County, Valerie Kramer of Fond du Lac County, Katherine Larson of Vernon County, Riley Miller of Rock County, Courtney Moser of Vernon County, Geneva Nunes of Chippewa County, Jessica and Nicole Pralle of Clark County, Elizabeth Sarbacker of Dane County, Mariah Strauss of Jefferson County, and Brooke, Dane and Luke Trustem of Rock County.

Long Range Production owners of cows include Madison Calvert of Lafayette County, Elise Bleck of Sheboygan County, Jake Brokish of Iowa County, Nathan Cordes of Barron County, Charles Hamilton of Grant County, Sarah Henschel of Sheboygan County, Kalista Hodorff of Fond du Lac County, Carter Jauquet of Shawano County, Kim Keller of Dane County, Valerie Kramer of Fond du Lac County, Matthew Kramer of Fond du Lac County, Katherine Larson of Vernon County, Riley Miller of Rock County, Jessica and Nicole Pralle of Clark County, Elizabeth Sarbacker of Dane County, Emily Steger of Crawford County, Mariah Strauss of Jefferson County, Luke Trustem of Rock County, Brooke Trustem of Rock County, and Dane Trustem of Rock County.

The Wisconsin Junior Holstein Association awards interested juniors the opportunity to travel to an area of the state to tour farms and learn from their dairy operations. This Farm Tour award was given to 12 recipients including Megan Nelson of Trempealeau County, Rachel McCullough of Green County, Brooke Trustem of Rock County, Mason Jauquet of Shawano County, Maddie Zutz of Manitowoc County, Allissa Frisle of Barron County, Emma Gwidt of Shawano County, Paul Grulke of Dodge County, Hannah Nelson of Pierce County, Dawson Nickels of Dodge County, David Petersheim of Vernon County, and Kati Kindschuh of Fond du Lac County.

The convention concluded Sunday morning with an awards breakfast and the annual business meeting, where four new Junior Activities Committee (JAC) members were elected. The JAC group is responsible for coordinating and overseeing all junior events within the Wisconsin Junior Holstein Association. Selected this year for the southwest district was Zach Tolzman of Iowa County, Nicole Pralle of Clark County for the northwest district, Joseph Opsal of Dane County for the southeast, and Katie Bauer of Waupaca County for the northeast district. These members will serve a two-year term as JAC's, and join second-year members Logan Voigts of Lafayette County, Rachel Coyne of Pierce County, Kristen Broege of Rock County, and Andrew Greenfield of Fond du Lac County.

The contest room is always fun and a great way to show off projects done by junior members throughout the year. In the advertising contest, members submit advertisements they ran in the Wisconsin Holstein News or something they designed at home on their own. This year's winners in the junior division were Ava Booth of Sheboygan County, Kaydence Hodorff of Fond du Lac County, and Elise Bleck of Sheboygan County, who was also people's choice winner. In the senior division, Mariah Strauss of Jefferson County, Megan Nelson of Trempealeau County, and Nicole Wright of Jefferson County were recognized. Taking people's choice honors in the senior division was Megan Nelson.

In the photography contest's farm people photos, Samantha Pitterle of Dodge County was first and people's choice winner, Logan Turgasen of Richland County was second, and Tyler Giddings of Marathon County was third. In the senior division, Sara Griswold of Dane County was first and people's choice winner, McKenna Coffeen of Brown County was second, and Courtney Moser of Vernon County was third.

In photography's farm scenes category, Ava Booth of Sheboygan County took first and people's choice, while Brice Thiel of Wood County was second and Jared Abraham of Sheboygan County was third in the junior division. Excelling in the senior division were Erica Helmer of Sheboygan County, Hannah Nelson of Pierce County, and Valerie Kramer of Fond du Lac County. People's choice honors in the senior contest went to Hannah Nelson.

Wrapping up the photography contest was the farm animals category, where Kaelyn Weigel of Grant County took first, Samantha Pitterle of Dodge County took second, and Campbell Booth of Sheboygan County took third. Valerie Kramer of Fond du Lac County took first, Kelsey Cramer of Green County took second and Katherine Larson of Vernon County rounded out the senior division in third place. People's choice awards went to Brooke Hammann of Barron County in the junior division and Kelsey Cramer in the senior division.

The juniors got creative in the drawing and painting contest, and taking top honors in the junior division were Clarissa Ulness of Manitowoc County, and Paige Proctor of Wood County took second and third place, as well as people's choice honors.  In the senior division, Krista Hall of Vernon County was first, Brandon Biese of Manitowoc County was second, and Rachel Nigh of Vernon County rounded out the contest. Jenna Broege of Rock County was people's choice winner in the senior contest.

Also bringing out creativity were those in the crafts contest. Hannah Hensel of Wood County was first and people's choice winner, Jenna Thorgensen of Barron County was second, and Emily Makos of Green County was third the junior division. In the senior contest, Courtney Moser of Vernon County took first and second place, in addition to people's choice honors, and Kelsey Cramer of Green County was third.

Each county is encouraged to submit a scrapbook of their activities throughout the year. These books are judged and awards are given to the top three counties. This year, Manitowoc/Calumet County earned top honors, Wood County took second and District 5 juniors followed closely in third place. Digital scrapbooks were also submitted, and the winner of that contest was Lafayette County.

The folding display contest was a huge success again this year. Individuals developed display boards to highlight activities or subjects within the dairy industry. First in the junior division was Christopher Gunst of Waushara County, second was Logan Harbaugh of Shawano County, and third was Marissa Vosberg of Green County. Logan Harbaugh was named people's choice in this contest. First and people's choice in the intermediate division was Courtney Moser of Vernon County, and second place was McKenna Coffeen of Brown County. In the senior contest, Cierra Ehrke-Essock of Jefferson County was the winning entry and people's choice winner.

A banner from Manitowoc County took first place in the banner contest, and will represent Wisconsin at this year's National Holstein Convention in New York.

The annual essay contest encourages members to write about assigned topics relating to today's dairy industry. With another outstanding number of entries in this year's junior division, taking top honors in a tie were Clarissa Ulness of Manitowoc County and Kenadee Weigel of Lafayette County. Third place went to Kaelyn Weigel of Lafayette County. In the senior division, Madeline Zutz of Manitowoc County was first, Brooke Trustem of Rock County was second and Zach Dressler of Iowa County took third place.

One of the most coveted awards, based on participation throughout the year and enthusiasm, is the Spirit award, which was given to Trempealeau County. The Bell-R-Ring contest was won by Manitowoc/Calumet Counties with a clever song spun from 'Shake it off.'

For teams to be seated in the dairy bowl contest, they must take a written exam on the first day of convention. Those individuals scoring highest are recognized with awards. High scores in the junior division this year went to Matthew Gunst of Dodge County, Ava Booth of Sheboygan County, and Tahmara Hendrickson of Vernon County. Recognized for high scores in the senior division were Lizi Endres of Dane County, Ben Schmidt of Shawano County, and Maria Balbach of Lafayette County.

The Wisconsin Holstein Association would like to commend the Chippewa County Junior Holstein Association members and chaperones, and extend a special thank you to all volunteers that helped make the weekend a success!

The Association would also like to thank the following junior raffle sponsors: Matt, Molly and Ben Dorshorst, WI State Farmer, Mary Kay, UW-Platteville Dairy Club, Accelerated Genetics, Professional Dairy Producers of Wisconsin, ABS Global, Inc., Sexing Technologies, The Country Today, NASCO, East Central/Select Sires, Cattle Connection, UW-Madison Badger Dairy Club, International Protein Sires, Semex, World Dairy Expo, Agri-View, Hoard's Dairyman, Berres Brothers, Wisconsin Holstein Association, and Wisconsin Holstein Publications.