2018-04-12 / Community

Thumb Dairy Odyssey Days is back for 2018

Courtesy photos Courtesy photos Young people interested in dairy or animal science are invited to spend Saturdays April 28 and June 16 exploring the fun of dairy cattle. Thumb Dairy Odyssey, in its third year, is a series of fun and educational hands-on workshops being offered in Huron and Sanilac counties but youth do not have to be from one of these counties to attend.

This hands-on youth program teaches young people about the dairy industry, introduces youth to career options in agriculture, and strengthens skills used in FFA and 4-H competitions. In the past two years, Thumb Dairy Odyssey reached more than 80 youth along with parents and community volunteers. The program resulted in more participants in local fairs and a Thumb area dairy quiz bowl team. Participants said they learned about new career options in agriculture and were interested in a career they learned about.

The first of the 2018 programs will take place on Saturday, April 28 with a visit to Leipprandt Dairy in Pigeon. The day will kick off with a farm tour and three educational stations. Youth will: learn the finer points of showmanship with members of Junior Holstein Association; discover how use feed to unlock their heifer’s genetic potential and improve their chances at a blue ribbon; and explore how veterinarians identify sick animals and how they narrow down problem areas with a physical exam.

On Saturday, June 16, Dairy Odyssey Days will take place at Deluur Dairy in Deckerville. After a farm tour, topics will include: what a field rep does on farms (investigate what field reps do a farm and how they evaluate milking operations); fitting (learn some of the details of getting a cow ready to show, including the detailed work to make a show cow or calf shine); and how a cow views the world (uncover how a cow sees, thinks and perceives the world and us).

This program is designed for ages 9-19, but all ages are welcome. This event is for all youth whether farm kids, city kids, country kids, FFA or 4-H members as well non 4-H are invited to attend. Each day will be equally beneficial as a stand-alone
event or youth can attend both days. Programs will begin each day at 10 a.m. and conclude at 2:30 p.m. with lunch included. The cost is $5 per child with accompanying adults attending for free. To register for this event: https://events. anr.msu.edu/ThumbDairyOdyssey2018/ or call the Huron County Extension Office 1142 S. Van Dyke Road, Ste. 200, Bad Axe. For more information, call 989-269-9949 or email mbuza@anr.msu.edu.

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