The Penticton 4-H Trail Breakers Horse Club racked up a number of accolades earlier this month at the Okanagan 4-H Stock Show and Sale.
Not only did two of the club’s members receive the high-point awards for their categories, but the club itself won two major awards, the club high-point award as well as the stall competition award.
President of the club, 17-year-old Christy Grandbois, said winning the stall competition in particular was a notable achievement.
“It requires a lot of work,” she said. “There always has to be someone in the stalls from 8 a.m. to 3 p.m., you’re always cleaning, you’re always sweeping and it’s constant, and we have to muck out everything, and the water has to be clean and full.”
Grandbois said some members of the club have been working at winning the stall competition for 10 years.
“This year we realized that our work had finally paid off,” she said.
However, the five-day show wasn’t only about the competition and awards, said Grandbois.
“It’s a good experience for everybody because you get to go and meet a whole bunch of people and it’s a group of horse people like you, so it’s a group of people you understand,” she said.
The show in Armstrong, B.C. represents the culmination of the year’s training and lessons for the club. A number of clubs from around the Kootenays and Okanagan region were in attendance, bringing over 120 4-H horse club members.
For one of the club’s leaders, Susan Tebbutt, the fact that the group managed to score so many awards was amazing.
“We are actually a really small club compared to other clubs,” she said, noting that the Kamloops club had nearly 30 members in attendance. “It’s quite a remarkable feat that they did that.”
The horse club members weren’t the only local 4-H supporters to receive awards lately. James Hewitt, former president of the Canadian 4-H Foundation, received the Diamond Jubilee medal, a one-time award produced in recognition of the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee anniversary.
Hewitt was one of 15 other current and former 4-H leaders who received the medal, which has been given to community members who have made a positive difference in their community.
However, receiving such an award is nothing unusual for Hewitt.
“For whatever reason, good fortune or timing, I received the 25th Queen’s anniversary back in the ‘70s,” said Hewitt. “I received the 50th jubilee medal in 2002, and now I’ve got the Diamond Jubilee which is rather exciting. I’m hoping that the good Queen lasts another 10 years, and maybe I’ll last along with her. Who knows?”
4-H is an agricultural youth group with many different clubs around North America. The goal of the organization is to develop citizenship, leadership, responsibility and life skills in a practical way.