At the conference, the youth are given a chance to showcase their talents in a variety of areas. These are a few hints from our members on what to expect at our Conference and Show! Use our checklist to be sure you are prepared!
Team Marketing – Team Selling is an event where a member is paired up with one or two other members of the same age group, and they present a product or an animal and attempt to sell it to a judge. This event gives youth an opportunity to design and sell a product, plan out all of the details associated with the product, and to make a structure for their company. Planning out the details associated with your product can give the opportunity to expand on whichever parts of the product that you want, such as: advertising, business cards, pricing, ordering and delivery of the product, where consumers can buy the product, availability of the product, etc. The team members can also plan out the physical aspects of the product such as colors, sizes, how it operates, maintenance of the product, and even extra features that a buyer can get with/add on to their product. This event allows CCYA members a chance to make friends and meet new people while developing your teamwork skills. Along with teamwork, the team-selling event also encourages creativity amongst the youth members and presents an opportunity to become more confident when presenting ideas to others.
Individual Marketing – This competition is a great way for you to get creative and sell something to the judges! Each group will be given 45 minutes to complete their specific choice.
Juniors you have a choice between individual selling, a radio ad OR a magazine ad. Regardless of which you choose, make sure you pick something you want to sell (it can be anything! A cow, a comb or rubber boots!) In individual selling you’ll be able to plan out your presentation, and make anything you think would help you sell your product- a business card, poster, picture of your product etc. before going in front of the judges with your product and sales pitch. If you choose to do a radio ad, you will be able to write up a script for your ad, then you will get to record it! Juniors who choose the magazine ad will have everything they need to make up an original ad (paper, glue, markers, old Charolais Banners).
Intermediates will receive 2 different advertisements, and be asked to fill out a set of questions based on comparing and contrasting each ad; ultimately deciding which one they think is best.
Seniors will be asked to develop a marketing plan for a given scenario. A variety of questions will be provided as a template for the plan, along with any background information based on the scenario.
Team Grooming – Participants work in teams of 3-4, with teammates from each age category to fit an animal for the show ring. Teams are given a time limit according to the condition of the animals being used in the competition. The competition is judged based on ability to work together as a team, knowledge of products and the final appearance of the animal. The top 5 teams will compete in the team grooming finals. The conference committee will provide unclipped and ungroomed animals for the team grooming finals, where teams have an hour to prepare their animals.
Team Judging – Team Judging is an event where a member is paired up with another member of the same age group and they work together to judge a class of animals in real-life cattle show setting. One partner is normally the judge and the other partner takes on the responsibility of the ringman. The judge gives oral reason over a microphone to the people who are watching about why the placement of the animals was given. The ringman works to arrange the exhibitors and their cattle into the proper formation and directs them which way to travel in the ring, helps with lining the cattle up, re-arranging the placement of the cattle, and continuing the steady pace in the show ring. Judging is based on presentation (bring an outfit!), and how the team worked together to present the class and give reasons. This event allows CCYA members to get to know their teammate better and also to develop teamwork skills in a real-life, on the spot setting.
Individual Judging – Individual Judging is a definite asset to anyone involved in agriculture. In CCYA, there are typically three classes that you will be judging, cow/calf pairs, heifers, and calves. With individual judging, it is always a good idea to study terminology and the traits you are looking for, before the competition takes place so that you can effectively use your time judging. The first thing to remember when judging is that you need to be consistent, meaning that you have to compare all the animals on the same criteria or set of traits. Then you need to pick which one has the most desirable set of traits or is the closest to what you think is the perfect animal. From there you follow the same routine in placing the animals down to last. If the animals are tied up, you always judge from left to right, meaning that unless you are given tag numbers, you assume that the farthest left animal is animal #1 so that you can identify the animal by a number when you are placing them. If you are looking for help with what you should look for when judging, all 4-H manuals have judging “how to” guides and if you don’t have access to 4-H manuals, there is some helpful terminology in the “Into the Ring” manual on the CCYA website!
Oral reasons – Oral Reasons is when you present your reasons for placing the judging classes the way you did to a judge. Your reasons should be based on what you wrote on your judging cards, which only the junior members will be allowed to use when giving their oral reasons. Juniors will only have to give reasons on one of the classes (bull calves, bred heifers, or heifer calves), but the intermediate and senior members will give reasons on all three classes. You have two minutes for each class of reasons. When giving your reasons, try to sound confident, make eye contact, stand still without fidgeting, and use proper judging terminology.
Keep & Cull – This competition usually takes place at a farm near the city where the conference is held. During this competition, members will choose three animals to keep and two animals to cull out of a group of five pairs. The judge might come up with a scenario to help you have a better idea of what he is looking for, and you will be given a set of EPD’s and some history of each cow so you have a bit more information. You will complete a card (similar to a judging card) with your reasons for keeping or culling the animals you chose, and why. Senior members will be available to help junior members complete their cards.
Art – CCYA also offers an opportunity to show your creative side through the art competition. Art may be presented in any form of media including wood and metal work, paint, graphite, charcoal, clay, fabric, glass, or anything else you can think of! Artwork cannot, however, contain any pictures or photography. In this competition creativity and originality is key!
Photography – Next time you go out to the pasture remember to bring your camera! The photography competition looks for clarity, quality and originality. Your picture should relate to the cattle industry and include Charolais or crossbred cattle. Take your camera out when the flowers are blooming in the pasture or during calving season, during sunset or sunrise, use different effects and contrast to make your picture stand out! Some competitors have made use of rainbows and clouds to make their picture more interesting; you may even want to try taking your picture from different angles. When printing your picture out, remember that it can’t be any bigger than 8 x 10.
Showmanship – Showmanship is a great competition for CCYA exhibitors because it helps you to learn proper show ring technique for every class. At CCYA, all exhibitors are separated by their age and only compete against their age category (junior, intermediate, senior). Important things to remember include keeping an eye on your judge to know where he or she is all the time and to have your animal set up to the best of your ability. Preparation and practice with your animal at home before the show is key! Your animal should be presentable, and you should always remember to smile because judges like to see you having fun. For more additional tips and helpful advice, check out the “Into the Ring” show guide on the CCYA website!
Cattle Conformation – Success in conformation begins long before the day or the show. It starts when you pick the animal or animals that you are going to show. Explanation on cattle selection is available in Into The Ring which is available on the CCYA website. After selection, other important elements that can help you to be successful on show day include feeding, halter breaking, and hair training. Details and tips on all of these are also available in Into The Ring.
Herdsman Competition – At the CCYA conference and show, our stalls are a little bit different than most of the other breed associations. All participants with or without cattle will be split into groups of 5-8, depending on the size of the conference. The idea of the herdsman group is to challenge all competitors to work as a team and to help each other with the daily tasks of having cattle at a show. This means all competitors will lend a helping hand with morning and evening chores. The senior members of the group are to make sure each member has an animal to show in showmanship and to use in team grooming. Senior members are also there to help get animals to the ring on time and lend a hand in whatever may need to be done. This is also a competition and secret judges will be around the barn to see how well your team works together, how clean your stall and animals are, and they may even be looking for creativity (having a curtain or a theme adds to the fun of things!) Most of all this is to create a unique experience to make lifelong friendships and learn important skills for the future.
-The Ambassador Award– The ambassador award is awarded to two members of each age category. The award is given to the individuals that are recognized to be the most helpful, approachable, friendly, and have a generally great attitude towards everyone and everything at the conference. This can mean that you are willing to lend a hand helping a junior get their heifer ready for the show or you get to the barn at 6am and have a smile on your face all day. The competition is voted on by all youth members and a select group of parents, judges and barn bosses. It is not meant to be viewed as a competition but more to recognize some of the outstanding youth in the CCYA program.
Aggregate Competition – Participants scores in a variety of competitions are accumulated to determine the score for this overall competition.
Education Awards – Senior participants only receive this award based on accumulated scores in a variety of competitions. Winners are able to apply the award towards a number of different education experiences.