PDF of Newsletter 


A Letter from the Extension Agent

The new year is often a time to write new year’s resolutions.  It’s also a good time to look at your 4-H goals.  I encourage you to write SMART goals.  This is an acronym for goals that are Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Realistic and Timely.  

Goals that are specific are clearly defined and answer the basic questions of who, what, when, where, why and how.  Goals need to be measurable. They should contain an exact number that can be measured.  Goals should be attainable, meaning it is something that challenges you but isn’t impossible to accomplish.  Goals should be realistic.  Do you have the time, resources, skills and ability to reach the goal?  If not, the goal may not be realistic.  Lastly, goals should be timely by setting a timeline or even a deadline for your goal.  

Write goals in your record book and enjoy working to achieve them!

Happy Holidays!


Allison Kosto, Extension Agent, MSU Extension Broadwater County


Greytak Calendars

We still have Greytak calendars available to purchase from the Extension Office! The calendars feature beautiful hand drawn sketches of scenes of Montana living by artist Don Greytak.  Calendars are $15 each and part of the proceeds go to the County 4-H Council.  Exact cash or checks are appreciated.


Beef Tagging and Weigh-in

The event is on Saturday, December 31st at Noon at GaLor Genetics (8393 US Hwy 287, Townsend).  To respect our host, please be on time and not too early.  All market beef animals are required to attend. If you can’t be there, you must make arrangements for your animal(s) to be there. Breeding animals are welcomed to get weighed but are not required to attend.  It is recommended to bring your brand inspection paperwork for the inspector to look over and help provide guidance on what needs to be done prior to Fair.  Also be prepared to share information about your animal including breed, breeder and birthdate.  A beef workshop will follow tagging so please plan to stay.  If you have any questions about the beef project, contact John Ferrat at 406.949.7911 or Samantha Ferrat at 406.949.0869.


Montana 4-H Legislative Breakfast

The 4-H Legislative Breakfast is a state 4-H event that provides an opportunity to share the work and success of 4-H with Montana legislators.  The event will be held the morning of January 17 at 6:30 am with a preparatory dinner on the evening of January 16 at 6:00 pm. Registration is in Zsuites and closes on January 4th. The cost for the dinner on the 16th is $25 and the breakfast on the 17th is $30. The county 4-H Council will provide up to $20 per person for 4-H members to attend.  It is open to any age.


4-H Volunteer Institute

Registration is now open for this event on February 17-19 in Billings. It is open to all adults 4-H volunteers. Registration is $75, and the Broadwater County 4-H Council will cover your registration to attend (reimbursed after the event)!  Lodging is on your own. The institute will be a great opportunity to learn from other volunteers and Extension agents, network and celebrate the accomplishment of volunteers across Montana. More information and the registration link can be found at the MSU Extension website.


County Contest Extravaganza 

Plans are underway for County Contest Day which has tentatively been schedule for Sunday, March 12.  County contests are a fun way for you to share your knowledge, learn new skills and be recognized for your hard work.  Contests are related to communications, cooking and sewing or quilting.  You don’t have to be enrolled in a certain project to participate.  Senior members (13-18 years old) can earn a trip to compete at Montana 4-H Congress.  See page 4 for a list of county contests and descriptions so you can start preparing your entry.


4-H Leaders Training

Starting this year, all 4-H volunteer leaders will be required to complete an annual training through ZSuites.  Leaders have one year to complete the training.  The purpose of the training is to help provide leaders with basic information about 4-H.  If you have any questions or concerns, please contact the office.  We can also setup a computer for you to do the training at the office.


Countywide 4-H Activities

Committee & Council Meetings

4-H COUNCIL: The next meeting will be Tuesday, January 24th at 7:00 pm at the Extension Office (Flynn Building, 416 Broadway, Townsend). Contact Karen Noyes at 406.949.4852 if you have any questions or agenda items. Agenda items must be submitted by noon the Friday prior to the meeting.

INDOOR COMMITTEE: The next meeting will be Tuesday, January 24th at 6:00 pm at the Extension Office (Flynn Building, 416 Broadway, Townsend). Contact Karen Noyes at 406.949.4852 if you have any questions or agenda items. Agenda items must be submitted by noon the Friday prior to the meeting.

LIVESTOCK COMMITTEE:  The next meeting will be Tuesday, January 3rd at 7:00 pm at the Extension Office (Flynn Building, 416 Broadway, Townsend). The Animal Loss Policy Subcommittee will be meeting prior to the meeting at 6:00 pm.  If you have any questions or agenda items, please contact Jason Noyes at 406.949.4851. Agenda items must be submitted by noon the Friday prior to the meeting.

HORSE COMMITTEE:  The next meeting will be Wednesday, February 8th at 4:00 pm at the Extension Office (Flynn Building, 416 Broadway, Townsend). If you have any questions or agenda items, please contact Jan Finn at 406.266.4992 or [email protected]. Agenda items must be submitted by the Monday prior to the meeting.

TEEN CLUB: The Teen Club will be meeting on Wednesday, January 18th at 4:00 pm at the Extension Office. We will be completing our service project. Teen Club is open to all Middle or High School aged members. If you are not currently in Teen Club, but want to find out what it is about, please come to this meeting! Please RSVP to Karen Noyes at 406.949.4852.

INTERSTATE EXCHANGE CLUB: The Interstate Exchange club will be meeting on Wednesday January 11th at 7:00 am at Infinite Hope Counseling (108 N Front St, Townsend). We will be discussing fundraising options and travel dates. If you have any questions, please contact Jennifer Beatty at 406.490.1362.


County Contest Committee Meeting

There will be a planning meeting for county 4-H contests on Tuesday, January 3rd at 6:00 pm in the backroom of the Extension Office (Flynn Building, 416 Broadway, Townsend). If you volunteered to be a part of this committee, please attend this meeting. If you have any questions, please contact the office. 


4-H Animal Project Activities


Beef Project

There is a Beef project (market and breeding) meeting scheduled for Saturday, December 31st following the mandatory weigh in and tagging event at GaLor Genetics. The tagging event starts at noon, and we will meet as soon as all animals are weighed and tagged. Please bring your 4-H record books, notebook/paper and pencil. RSVP is encouraged, so we can have enough materials for everyone. Another Beef workshop will be Sunday, February 5th from 1:00-3:00 pm at the Extension Office (416 Broadway, Townsend). This meeting will feature a beef trivia game. There are also workshops planned for March 5th and April 2nd (times and locations TBD).  If you have any questions, contact Samantha Ferrat at 406.949.0869 or John Ferrat at 406.949.7911.


Dairy Goat Workshops

There will be a meeting on Saturday, January 7th at 5:30 pm at the Extension Office (416 Broadway, Townsend). The monthly meetings will be on the first Saturday of each month at 5:30 pm. Meeting places will vary and will be announced before each meeting. Meat Goat members are also welcome! There are many subjects planned to be covered this year including: barn setup, shots, worming, eating habits, milking, disbudding, imprinting, milk products, testing, diseases, and showmanship. If any member would like to give a demonstration at a meeting, this can be scheduled. If you have any questions, please contact Danyel Henke at 406.980.0995.


Rabbit and Pocket Pet Workshop

There will be a rabbit and pocket pet workshop on Sunday, January 22nd at 2:00 pm at the Extension Office (416 Broadway, Townsend). This will be an informational meeting to plan what topics you would like to learn about this year. No animals at this meeting please. If you have any questions, please contact Danielle Douglas at 406.465.3318


Poultry Workshop

There is a poultry workshop scheduled for Saturday January 21st from 10:00-11:00 am at the Extension office (Flynn Building, 416 Broadway, Townsend). Topics covered will be poultry project expectations and Fair information. If you have any questions, please contact Alice Kroeger at 406.547.4343.


Important Market Livestock Deadlines

Posession December 31st, 2022
Tagging and Weigh In (in person event) December 31st, 2022
Posession April 15th, 2023
ID Forms w/ Tag #s (turned in to office) May 1st, 2023
Lambs & Goats
Posession May 15th, 2023
Tagging and Weigh In (in person event) Exact date TBD (Mid/end of May)
Poultry & Rabbits
Posession June 25th, 2023
Identification Form (turned in to office) June 26th, 2023


4-H Non-Animal Project Activities

Archery Workshops

The archery project will host workshops in January and February on Tuesdays from 6:00-8:00pm at the Fairgrounds.  If you have any questions, please contact Barry McDonald at 406.580.0079, Andrew Christensen at 406.589.7747 or Eric Crusch at 406.521.0275.

.22 Rifle Workshops

The .22 rifle project will meet at the Broadwater County Rod and Gun Club Canton Range (96 Canton Lane, Townsend) on the 2nd and 4th Thursday of each month from 6:30 to 8 p.m. Participants must be age 9 or older to enroll in the project.  Participants will learn firearm safety (first and foremost), firearm nomenclature, shooting skills, shooting positions, and much more.  Participants will shoot almost every meeting starting after the third meeting.  Parents are encouraged, but not required, to remain on-site during the meeting. The gun club provides .22 rifles for participants that do not have a rifle, or participants can bring their own. Scopes and semi-auto rifles are prohibited. Contact John Pavao at 406.422.9590 if you have any questions, if you would like to help, or if you know of kids that may be interested in joining this project. 


Hunting and Wildlife Workshops

Did you know that there is a Hunting and Wildlife Shooting Sports project? This project includes sections on firearm and bow safety, but also focuses on conservation, wildlife habitats, tracking and outdoor survival. We have a newly certified leader in our county! Workshops will be held every 3rd Saturday from January to June. The first meeting will be Saturday, January 21st at 2:00 pm at the Extension Office. Contact Brandon Henke at 406.980.0992 if you have any questions.


Cloverbuds Meetings

Cloverbuds will be meeting on Tuesday, January 10th at 6:00 pm at the Extension Office. If you have any questions, please contact Jessica Crusch at 406.949.0057


Sewing Workshops

The next workshop will be held Saturday, January 14th at 9:30 am. Sewing workshops are generally held the second Saturday of the month at the Extension Office. If you have any questions, please contact Sarah Holland at 406.266.3473


Embroidery Workshops

The first embroidery workshop is scheduled for Monday, January 23rd from 6:30-8:00pm at the Extension Office. Also save the dates for the other workshops, January 30th, and February 6th and 27th. If you have any questions, please contact Melissa Meissner at 406.521.0745.


Quilting Workshops

The first workshop will be held Saturday, January 14th from 1:00-3:00pm at the Extension Office. The next quilting workshop will be on February 11th.  If you have any questions, please contact Melissa Meissner at 406.521.0745.


Photography Workshops

The first photography workshop is scheduled for Sunday, January 29th 1:00 pm at the Extension Office (416 Broadway, Townsend). Thereafter, we’ll plan for 4 – 6 indoor and outdoor workshops through winter and spring on dates that work best for the group. Please watch for an email coming soon with more details.  If you have any questions, please contact Lee Nelson at 406.521.0748


Food and Nutrition- Cooking and Baking Workshops

Foods workshops are planned for January 12th, 19th and 26th at 6:00 pm for ALL members. Workshops will be held at the Trailhead Christian Fellowship Church (20 Trailhead View Dr, Townsend). On January 12th, members can arrive early at 5:30 PM (optional) to help set tables, and at 6 PM we will have a meal together learning and practicing table etiquette.  On January 19th, Angie Wintrow, owner of Mountie Moose Bakery, will be our guest speaker. On January 26th, members are encouraged to prepare a cooking/baking-related demonstration or talk that they will present this night. This will provide an opportunity for members to present a cooking/baking-specific topic as well as be prepared to give the same demonstration/talk at their club meeting and even at the County Contest Day, if they so choose.  If you have any questions, please contact Jennifer Beatty at 406.490.1362.


What are County Contests? 

Here are the descriptions of each of the contests being held at the County Contest Extravaganza! Read through them and decide which contest you want to enter!

Communications—This contest recognizes the importance of developing high level communication skills as an essential life skill. Here you have an opportunity to practice and demonstrate communication skills through a variety of different methods. The following are components of the contest:  illustrated talk, commercial, impromptu speech, demonstration, video, career communications and prepared speech. You may participate in one or multiple components of the contest. Each component of the contest has a unique set of rules, so be sure to review them before participating.

Fashion Revue— This contest emphasizes skill development in selecting, constructing, accessorizing and modeling garment(s).  You also develop skills in communication, self-confidence, poise and decision making. There are two categories of the contest.  The traditional category is where you bring a new garment that you made.  Items can be sewn, hand-knitted or crocheted. The refashioned category is where you take an existing clothing item and repurpose it into a significantly wearable garment or look. Participants interview with a judge in addition to modeling the item.

Hooked on Cooking – This is an opportunity for members to demonstrate cooking skills. It is open to junior members (8-13 years old) as individuals or teams. The contest emphasizes having fun while cooking and developing skills for safe, nutritious and proper presentation of food. Each year is a new theme and participants create a meal and place setting and interview with a judge. 

Stir-Ups— This is an opportunity for participants to showcase cooking skills and nutritional knowledge.  It is open to any members who are 13 years old or older as individuals or teams. Participants will prepare an appealing, nutritious meal and participate in an interview with the judge.  Each year there is a new and a list of possible ingredients. Participants must use specific ingredients from the provided list to come up with your own creation.

Quilting —Participants in this contest demonstrate the principles of design and an understanding of the techniques required to construct a quilt or quilted item.  Participants will interview with the judge while he/she looks at the construction of the quilt.


Statewide 4-H Opportunities


Leadership Academy

Join the Montana 4-H Leadership Academy workshops on Sunday afternoons this winter. The Leadership Academy is a network of Montana 4-H members interested in exploring and developing their ow leadership skills while serving their county 4-H program in new ways. Join with groups around the state as well as the Montana 4-H ambassador Officer team virtually and in-person when possible, to work on skill building, planning and mentorship. Registration is online and is open to 4-H members ages 12+. The dates for the leadership academy workshops are January 8th, February 5th and March 5th from 3:00-4:00 pm.


Montana 4-H Citizenship Seminar

This event is taking place on Sunday, January 15 - Tuesday, January 17 (early afternoon to early afternoon) in Helena. It is open to youth ages 13-19 (as of October 1, 2022).  Registration is done through Zsuites and closes on January 2nd. The cost for this program is $85. There is currently a group planning to attend from our county.  Funding assistance may be available through the county 4-H Council and the Mike Ferrat Memorial Fund.

What is Montana Citizenship Seminar? Montana Citizenship Seminar is designed to inspire 4-H youth as they learn about the rights and responsibilities of citizenship. Youth delegates gain hands-on experience with the legislative process by participating in a mock legislature, create and debate bills, work with other youth from across the state, meet with elected officials, tour the capitol, and participate in a service-learning project. Citizenship Seminar is held in Helena in the years when the legislature is in session. Youth delegates share their 4-H experience with current legislature representatives during the Legislative Breakfast which is hosted on January 17 by Montanans for 4-H. 


Montana Shooting Sports Leaders Trainings

The schedule for the upcoming Shooting Sports Leaders Trainings has been finalized. Any adult interested in becoming a Shooting Sports Leader must complete training in that particular discipline. The trainings include four online training modules and an in-person training portion. Dates are as follows:

·         April 2023 – Billings for Archery, Rifle, Pistol, Shotgun, and Coordinator.

·         May 2023 – Manhattan Wildlife Association for Shotgun, Muzzle-loading, Hunting Skills, and Western Heritage.

The 4-H Council can help cover registration fees for a few more adults and junior leaders to attend.  For more information, please contact the Extension Office for details 406.266.9242.


People Partner Grants - Montana 4-H Foundation

These grants, up to $500, provide incentives and financial support to 4-H clubs, groups and individuals for programs that enhance the quality of living for people in their communities. Applications should meet the following criteria:

•    Youth should be involved in determining, planning, conducting, and evaluating the project.

•    Project will make it possible for people to accomplish something educational and worthwhile that helps them reach a higher quality of life.

•    There is community support and acceptance of the project, as evidenced by “partners” listed in the grant application, additional funding sources, and resource persons and agencies involved.

•    The project has lasting benefits.

Applications can be found at the Montana 4-H Foundation website. and must be postmarked by February 1.


MontanaFair Junior Livestock Show 

The event will be August 11th-19th in Billings. Animals participating in this show must be tagged on the following dates: Beef on Sunday, January 8th from Noon-3:00pm and Swine/Sheep/Goat on Saturday, May 6th from 8:00-11:00 am.  Both tagging events are at the Public Auction Yard in Billings. For more information, contact the Extension Office.


Statewide Shooting Sports Matches

There are several shooting sports matches scheduled during the next few months. Some are in-person events and others are postal matches. For additional information on any particular event, please contact the office.

·         Lewis & Clark County Invitational- Saturday, January 7th in Helena.  Archery only.

·         National 4-H Shooting Sports Quizbowl- January 16–20th. Registration details and study guide available Jan. 1st at the National Shooting Sports website.

·         Flathead County 4-H Invitational Shoot – Saturday, January 28th in Kalispell. Register by January 21st.

·         Marias Fair 4-H Only Archery Invitational – Sunday, January 29th in Shelby.  Register by January 25th.

·         Choteau County Archery Shoot- February 25th in Fort Benton. Archery only.

·         State 4-H Shooting Invitational- March 3rd – 5th in Bozeman.

·         Custer County Invitation January 13th and 14th in Miles City.  Archery and air events.


MSU Extension and MSGA announce 2022 Steer of Merit certifications

A program offered by Montana State University Extension and the Montana Stockgrowers Association that provides an opportunity for students throughout the state to raise cattle and learn about various elements of beef quality recently announced its annual winners.

The 2022 Steer of Merit program winners were recognized Dec. 8 at the Montana Stockgrowers Association annual convention and trade show in Billings.

MSU Extension and MSGA distinguished 154 “Steers of Merit” out of 1,288 entries. Of 555 steers entering the carcass division, 78 were deemed Steers of Merit. In the ultrasound division, 76 out of 734 entries received the distinction. The number of Steer of Merit certifications for 2022 declined slightly compared to 2021, according to Megan Van Emon, MSU Extension beef cattle specialist. More counties participated in the ultrasound contest this year due to the lack of packing plant facilities and space, Van Emon added.

The top five steer entries in the ultrasound division were:

Kayli Cook, Montana Fair (Vanek Club Calves, breeder)

Sy Carda, Richland County (Brent Carda, breeder)

Dani Hess, Montana Fair (Shay Family Livestock, breeder)

Dallas Berkram, Marias Fair (Diamond Box Livestock, breeder)

MaRae Smail, Marias Fair (Dunbar Brothers, breeder).

The top five steer entries in the carcass division were:

Shelby Taylor, Lake County (Shelby Taylor, breeder)

Ladahlia Hook, Flathead County (Toby Hook, breeder)

Colton Noyes, Broadwater County (KD Cattle Co, breeder)

Samuel Simonson, Phillips County (Shon Simonson, breeder)

Isaac Eaton, Prairie County (Frank Eaton & Sons, breeder).

The Montana Steer of Merit program started in 1967 as a joint effort between the Montana Stockgrowers Association and MSU Extension to measure, record and improve carcass traits in beef cattle. Over time, significant increases have been made in quality grade and yield grade, or cutability, indicating that cattle can be selected for leaner carcasses with higher cutability while maintaining high-quality grade as reflected by their marbling, Van Emon said.

To be a Steer of Merit, carcasses are evaluated for yield of lean meat and eating quality. Beef carcasses must meet criteria set by the Steer of Merit Committee in the areas of hot carcass weight, dressing percent, fat thickness over the 12th rib (back fat), rib eye area, yield grade, percent cutability and quality grade. Data is compiled and used to rank carcasses for state and county awards, and it is analyzed periodically to track genetic and feed management progress. The minimum standards for Steer of Merit are reviewed each year.


Scholarship Opportunity

Montana 4-H Foundation is happy to inform you that we are now accepting applications for higher education scholarships.  Please note the due date has been changed this year to February 14, 2023.  This deadline will provide more time to review and score applications, inform county agents, and notify all applicants of results prior to school graduation dates. 

To begin the process, please review all scholarship eligibility and criteria on the Montana 4-H Foundation website.

To apply you will need an electronic copy of your transcripts and letters of recommendation.  Be sure to gather those in advance.


Montana 4-H Rec Lab Workshop Proposals​

Montana 4-H District 4 (Valley, Richland, Roosevelt, Daniels, Sheridan, McCone and Dawson Counties) is hosting Rec Lab in Culbertson March 17-19, 2023 and is seeking workshop proposals for Saturday March 18.   
Go to the Montana 4-H website to submit proposals. 
Proposals are due January 13 to Valley County Extension Office (Shelly Mills)​​
Save the Date: Rec Lab 2023 in Culbertson March 17-19. Youth 13 + 4-H age. 

Proposals from teens, volunteers, and Extension staff welcome!


Other Opportunities


Broadwater County Fair Board is looking for new members

The Broadwater County Fair Board has two openings for board members. If you have been looking for a way to be involved with your community and are passionate about the Fair, please reach out to Jessica at the office for more details.


International Exchange Programs for Youth 

Are you curious about daily life, culture, and youth programs in other countries? Travel abroad with States’ 4-H and enter a world that most tourists rarely get to see.

States’ 4-H Summer Outbound programs provide 4-H youth with the opportunity to travel to foreign countries for a  month-long cultural immersion experience. Delegates live with volunteer host families and engage in experiential learning about a new way of life. 

2023 Travel Dates:

·         Japan 8-week:   June 14—August 10, 2023

·         Costa Rica:         June 21—July 20, 2023

·         Japan 4-week:   July 12—August 10, 2023

·         South Korea:      July 17—August 15, 2023

4-H youth ages 12 - 18 for Japan & South Korea, and ages 15 - 18 for Costa Rica  For specific fees on any of the destinations, please contact the office. Application deadline is December 31.  For more information go to the states 4-H exchange website.


Montana Small Pork Producers Conference

This is an opportunity for pork producers, 4-H members, FFA members and others to come together to learn about swine genetics, pork production, herd health and pork recipes. This year’s conference will be held April 29th, 2023, in Great Falls. Registration information will be out in early 2023.