Friday, February 26, 2021

02/24/21 4-H Email Blast: Smithville Livestock Show Broiler, Rabbit, & Schedule Updates


See original post at: 

This email is geared towards exhibitors entered in the Smithville Livestock Show

Hey all!

We wanted to pass on updates about the 2021 Smithville Livestock Show.  There have been some adjustments to the schedule to assist with social distancing.  We’ve also included some reminders for Broiler & Rabbit Exhibitors.

  • Broiler Exhibitors:

    • The broiler pick-up date is Tuesday, March 2nd, from 4:00 PM to 5:00 PM at the Smithville HS Ag Shop
  • Rabbit Exhibitors:

    • Please touch base with your rabbit breeder.  The recent bad weather has affected a lot of breeders and their rabbits.  Please let us know if you have any questions or need any help.
  • Other Reminders:

    • The Show Board will require facial coverings to be worn at all times and ask that all attendees use CDC Guidelines (social distancing, proper hygiene, etc.) that keep you and others safe during the livestock show. 
    • Additionally, to help limit the number of people present, the show is limiting the number of people to the exhibitor and 4 guests
  • Schedule Updates:

    • Friday, April 16, 2021 - Lambs, Goats, Rabbits and Chickens will be shown
      • 9:00 AM – Lambs Arrive
      • 10:30 AM – Goats Arrive
      • 1:00 PM – Rabbits Arrive (Showmanship judging will take place at the same time)
      • 3:00 PM – Broilers Arrive
    • Saturday, April 17, 2021
      • 8:00 AM – Swine Arrive
      • 9:30 AM – Ag Mech projects judged
      • 10:00 AM – Steers & Heifers Arrive
      • 10:30 AM – Heifers go into the ring while steers are weighed
      • 11:00 AM – Steers go into the ring
    • Notes:
      • After judging is completed, animals will be loaded and taken home.
      • Steers are the only species weighed.

Have a great week and let us know if you have any questions!


Mellanie L. Mickelson

Bastrop County Extension Agent – 4-H & Youth Development
Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Services

P.O. Box 650 | 901 Pecan Street | Bastrop, TX 78602
p: (512) 581-7186 | c: (512) 522-9174 | f: (512) 581-7187

Website –
Blog –
Facebook –



Thursday, February 25, 2021

02/24/21 4-H Email Blast 2: Bastrop Area Livestock Show Reminders for next week

See original post on website at

This email is geared towards exhibitors entered in the Bastrop Area Livestock Show.

Hey all!

We wanted to pass on a few reminders for the upcoming Bastrop Area Livestock Show this week!  Please read through the reminders and updates and let us know if  you have any questions.  I’ll be at the show if y’all need anything next week, but will be in Houston for the auction on Saturday. 

I also want to share that there has been a report of a group of pigs that were present at both the San Angelo Stock Show and San Antonio Stock Show that tested positive for Porcine Epidemic Diarrhea Virus (PEDv).  Older pigs (show age) tend to have a variety of symptoms that include: vomiting, diarrhea, lethargy, depression and loss of appetite. These symptoms will vary in severity for each individual animal. This virus is shed in the feces and vomitus of pigs and can be spread on trailers, people, clothing, shoes, in feed, etc.  Please make sure that you are keeping an eye on your pigs and try to stay spaced out at the show.

  • Bedding/Stalling Reminders:

    • There will be no bedding allowed in the barns, and stalls must be cleaned upon departure. (Carpet will be allowed as a bedding)
    • Animals must be penned or stalled after weigh in (pens/stalls will be assigned allowing proper spacing/distancing).
    • Rabbits and broilers will show out of their carriers.
  • Sale Reminders:

    • Families and buyers may attend the livestock show and sale. 
    • Exhibitors will not bring their animal for the auction sale on March 6.  They may bring their ribbon, a picture of their animal or a prop to hold if they would like.
    • If you are exhibiting more than 1 animal, you will need to notify the board of which animal you would like to sell.
    • You will need to visit with buyers ahead of time – if you have not reached out to them, please do so as soon as possible.  Please also see the attached Buyers Forms and information below from Phyllis:

Attached is Buyer Forms for your Buyers to have filled out for action.  I know some of you do not know who will be your buyer but the office will have limited access due to Covid.

Please make sure that all buyers file out the buyer's form for the action and try to have money in checks, cashier check, or money orders vs. any cash. 

These forms need to be filed out with addresses this is a must...... and if possible phone numbers please.  It is a two part form one form BALSFA and the other is for the Primary Buyer which can make a copy or photo of it on their phone.  

The day of Action I would like all buyers to put their money and buyer form in an envelope to turn in, if not they can drop off at my house 406 Magnolia or at Reinemund Real Estate 702 Chestnut or mail to P.O. Box 283.

If you have any questions please let me know. (512-332-6001)

There are two files one is a tif the other jpg same attachment just in case  you can't open one in your system.      



Phyllis Mathison,

BALSFA Treasurer 

ATTACHMENTS:  Buyers' Form JPG (TIF file not supported on this website - please see email for TIF file)

  • Photographer Changes:

    • There will NOT be a photographer this year – you will be responsible for your own photos
  • Thank You Note Reminders:

    • Each exhibitor will need to write a thank you note to each individual buyer listed on their list.  Thank you notes need to be at our office by 12:00 Noon Thursday, April 15th, so we can verify them per the BALS rules.  Any notes turned in after this will result in the exhibitor being fined $50.00. 
    • Many of you are familiar with the process of thank you notes and checks regarding the BALS Auction, but for those who may not be or who need a reminder, below are the requirements to keep in mind.
      • Thank you notes consist of the note, envelope, address, and appropriate postage
      • Thank you notes should be sealed in the envelope
      • Envelopes need to be sealed and stamped with the appropriate postage
      • The exhibitor’s return address and buyer’s address need to be written correctly and legibly on the envelope
    • Completed thank you notes need to be brought by members to the County Office (901 Pecan Street; Bastrop, Texas) by 12:00 Noon Thursday, April 15. 2021,
    • Please double check individual names as youth write them – For example, we have seen a lot of notes addressed to “last name, first name” such as “Mickelson, Mellanie” instead of “Mellanie Mickelson”.  Please help your kiddos as they are writing J
    • If you need help with writing thank you notes, please click here to download our Thank You Note Guide.
  • Other Reminders:

    • Families and buyers may attend the livestock show and sale. 
    • Visitors, board members and exhibitors will be asked to complete a Covid Screening Form and temperature check each day when entering the show grounds.
    • The Show Board will require facial coverings to be worn at all times and we will ask that all attendees use non pharmaceutical interventions (social distancing, proper hygiene, etc.) that keep you and others safe during the livestock show. 
    • Facial coverings will be required to be worn at all times (exemptions are youth under 10 years old and persons with medical conditions or disabilities that prevent the wearing of face covering) and hand sanitizer will be available at the show. 
    • There will be no concession stand during the livestock show or sale.
  • Schedule Changes:

    • The Antique Tractor Show has been cancelled for 2021.
    • The Baking and Food Preparation Show has been cancelled for 2021.
    • There will be no set up day.
    • The current schedule is included below:

Thank you!  Please let me know if you have any questions!


Mellanie L. Mickelson

Bastrop County Extension Agent – 4-H & Youth Development
Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Services

P.O. Box 650 | 901 Pecan Street | Bastrop, TX 78602
p: (512) 581-7186 | c: (512) 522-9174 | f: (512) 581-7187

Website –
Blog –
Facebook –



Saturday, February 20, 2021

Request for Ag Producer Damage Reports: 2021 Ice Storms

 Dear Bastrop County Ag Producers,

As the winter storms clear, we would like to request any updates from local producers regarding agricultural needs, issues or losses that have been suffered.  We ask that you describe any losses and their estimated value in the fields below.  We estimate that this process should take approximately 5-10 minutes.  Your assistance with this request will help to secure recovery support for our producers.  We would greatly appreciate a response by Monday morning, if possible, to allow us to report losses to the state.  

Thank you so much for your assistant and please let us know via email at or phone at 512-581-7186 if you have any questions.

– Your Bastrop County Extension Agents

The Survey may be accessed at or through the QR code in the image below:


Thursday, February 18, 2021

2021 4-H Beekeeping Essay - Due 03/15/21


4-H members do not have to have a bee project to participate in the essay contest.

The Foundation for the Preservation of Honey Bees, Inc. has announced their 2021 4-H Beekeeping Essay Topic. This year’s Topic is

2021 Essay Topic: Immunity: Threats to Bee Colonies and Methods to Defend Against the Threats

Honey bee colonies have developed many ways to stay healthy. Their immune responses range from behaviors such as grooming to using materials such as propolis, a plant-derived substance bees coat on the interior of a hive for antimicrobial purposes. Even the gut of the honey bee contains beneficial bacteria to help the bee stay healthy!

In your essay, name at least two threats (a parasite such as Varroa, a pathogen such as a virus, a predator such as a bear, etc.) to honey bee colonies and then discuss the methods colonies use to defend against the threats. If possible, include at least one picture you have taken from Feb. 2020-Feb. 2021 that illustrates how colonies manage to stay healthy against a variety of threats.

Please share the contest information with your 4-H members. It can be found at I have also provided a graphic to share via social media.

You can see past winner’s essays by visiting the following website and clicking on 4H Essays tab at the top of their page.

Essays will be uploaded at no fee on 4HOnline using the “2021 4-H Beekeeping Essay Contest” event. Deadline to submit is Monday, March 15. Winners will be announced the week of April 5th.

Wednesday, February 17, 2021

Texas Brigade Applications Are OPEN! - Youth Wildlife Leadership Camps - Due 03/15/21



STATEWIDE – Texas Brigades is now accepting applications for its summer Brigade Camps. The series of eight statewide camps are open to youth, 13-17 years of age, who are interested in the outdoors. Participating young men and women are introduced to subject-specific stewardship, conservation, and management topics throughout 5 days. Camp fees ($500) include meals, lodging, materials, and more. Local sponsorships are available and encouraged.

Each camp is an extensive and hands-on educational camp featuring a conservation subject or theme and is limited to 30 participants. Themes include quail, deer, bass, fisheries, marine species, waterfowl, and ranching. Texas Brigades is now in its twenty-ninth year of hosting summer camps.

“Our son LOVED it!” says Lezlee B., a cadet parent. “If your child has a chance to attend – make it happen for them.” 

Texas Brigades summer camps provide youth an intensive and exciting educational experience built on the important principles of stewardship of natural resources vital to livestock, wildlife, and waters in Texas. “Texas Brigades is a nonprofit organization providing youth with education, skills, and confidence needed to be a voice for conservation and stewardship,” says Executive Director Natalie Wolff. “We partner with Texas A&M AgriLife Extension and local County Agents and Educators to bring a rich, content-specific, science-backed curriculum to our participants.” Find more information on Texas Brigades and their long-time partnership with AgriLife at

Scheduled 2021 Brigade Camp dates and locations are:

  • June 4-8, Rolling Plains Bobwhite Brigade, private ranch near Abilene.
  • June 13-17, South Texas Buckskin Brigade, Welder Wildlife Refuge, Sinton.
  • June 19-23, South Texas Bobwhite Brigade, Buck Horn Creek Ranch, McCoy.
  • July 7-11, Bass Brigade, Warren Ranch, Santa Anna.
  • July 14-18, Waterfowl Brigade, Pintail Hunting Club, Garwood.
  • July 19-23, Ranch Brigade, Warren Ranch, Santa Anna.
  • July 25-29, North Texas Buckskin Brigade, Warren Ranch, Santa Anna.
  • July 27-31, Coastal Brigade, Sea Star Base, Galveston.

Apply online at by the March 15th deadline. Interested youths will select “Cadet App,” select camp preferences, and answer questions about their interests and experiences. Adults interested in volunteering for camp will select “Adult Leader App.” Camp selections are made by April 15th.

“The dedication and passion these young men and women exhibit for stewardship, wildlife, and waters assure me that the future of Texas’ natural resources is in good hands,” said Board Vice President Jeff Petter. “Brigade camps are a major success because of the leadership roles its graduates will play in the conservation, protection, and management of both private and public lands.”


Tuesday, February 16, 2021

D10 Fashion Show ( 04/23/21) and Storyboard Contests (03/29/21)

 Please see letters attached for 4-H Fashion Show Buying & Construction and Natural Fibers and 4-H Storyboard.  They can be downloaded below:

Two important things to remember for these contests:

  1. We will allow construction and buying items to be entered this year that were made/bought last year (2019-2020) since we did not have a contest in 2020.
  2. Storyboard is no longer a qualifying contest. (The state contest is invitational [open to everyone!]).

COUNTY DEADLINE FOR FASHION STORYBOARDS: Fashion Storyboards are DUE to the County Extension Office by 12:00 Noon on Thursday, March 18, 2021 - this means all glue must be dry, all items are attached, and it is ready for judging at that time.  Any storyboards NOT at the County Extension Office by the deadline will not be judged at District.


Rockne Livestock Booster Club - Buyer's Letter Overview & Templates

 Dear Families,

The following YouTube video and documents are being sent to help livestock youth write buyers group letters. Mrs. Lang and Mrs. Watson produced a video with tips on writing buyers group letters and ways to speak with potential supporters.

The attached documents include two examples. The first is an RLB template letter that can be used to contact supporters of the Rockne Livestock Booster Steak Supper. If you sold tickets in the past, you may wish to send a letter similar to the RLB template. The second letter is a sample to create your own buyers group request letter. As the video states, you can take the two letters and use them as your guide to make your own letter.

If you have questions about this topic, contact Mrs. Lang or Mrs. Watson at their emails listed below.

Thank you for helping to support your livestock auctions! Thank you and stay safe!! Susan, Barbara, and Heather

Rockne Livestock Booster Club Contacts:

Attachments (Linked):


Note: These resources will be available on the website at under Livestock Project Resources and are adaptable to more than just livestock projects

Monday, February 15, 2021

Office Closure Update for February 16-17, 2021

Please stay safe and warm!


D7 Shooting Sports Coach Training - Texas 4-H Center, Brownwood TX- March 13, 2021

Please find attached, information on the statewide Shooting Sports Coach Training being hosted in District 7 at the Texas 4-H Center in Brownwood on March 13, 2021.

While the letter should answer any questions please note the following:

  • This event will be a 1 DAY training with an online portion (required to be completed prior to arriving).  Link to online training will be provided to participants once they register for the event.
  • The online Green Injection training will allow us to complete the rest of the training in 1 day rather than 2.
  • Registration for the face to face portion of the training will be done through the Texas 4-H Center Website, NOT 4-H Online.
  • Participants MUST have an active volunteer profile in 4-H Online prior to attending the training.

The letter is included below and can be downloaded by clicking here.

D7 SS Coach Training 2021 (002)

South Texas Select Club Calf Sale - 02/28/21

D10 Food Challenge Contest - 04/28/21

Please see the 2020-2021 District 10 4-H Food Challenge Contest Letter below.  The letter can also be downloaded by clicking here.

Sunday, February 14, 2021

D10 4-H Photography Contest - Entries Due 02/26/21

Please see the reminder below for the District 10 4-H Photography Contest - entries are due 02/26/21

  • Register online at: 
  • See the District 10 Rules at: 



Registration OPEN! - Texas A&M AgriLife Summer Horsemanship School Program

Registration for the 49th Annual Summer Horsemanship School is now open

Saturday, February 13, 2021

D10 Leaders 4 Life Contest - 04/20/21

Below you will find the District 10 4-H Leaders 4 Life contest letter.

In order to be accommodating of the current COVID guidelines we have made a few changes to this contest to make it work:

  • Contest has been moved to Tuesday, April 20, 2020
  • Contest will be held in Seguin at the Guadalupe County Office
  • Each team will be provided a scheduled time to arrive, they will be the only one’s allowed in the building at that time

As with all of our other contests, please note that details are still subject to change as we get closer to the event. Once we have all Spring Roundup letters, they will be combined into the Spring Roundup guide.

Download the Leaders 4 Life Letter here.


Atascosa Club Calf Breeder's Association Sale


Friday, February 5, 2021

02/05/2021 4-H Email Blast: Scholarship Opportunities & Reminders

 02/05/2021 4-H Email Blast: Scholarship Opportunities & Reminders

This email blast is geared towards our Graduating High School Seniors and 11th graders preparing for their senior year.

Hey all and Happy Friday!

We wanted to pass on some reminders about the Texas 4-H Foundation Scholarship deadlines and the local scholarship opportunities available for everyone.  There should be several options available for those who have AND have not completed and turned in recordbooks in the past.  If you have any questions about scholarships or would like someone to help review applications or essays, please don't hesitate to let us know!



    • Application Deadline: February 15, 2021
    • Website:
    • Scholarship Application Portal:
    • If you missed the link for the Texas 4-H Foundation Scholarship Training put on by Megan Logan, the recording is available online at at your convenience!
    • The attachments to this email are helpful documents to this process, including an old style example of how to format the essays to your advantage
    • You do NOT need to have completed a recordbook to apply for this opportunity (Note: it is helpful for completing the essays)
    • If you would like me to help review your essays, please email them to me this this week as word (or google docs) so we can keep track of suggestions and you have control over any final changes
    • There is also an additional message from the Texas 4-H Foundation regarding transcripts:

Good afternoon,

It has come to our attention that semester schedules are behind due to the late start some schools faced due to COVID-19.  With this delay, some applicants will not have final 1st semester grades at the time of the deadline for the 2021 Texas 4-H Foundation Opportunity Scholarship to satisfy the 3.5 year transcript requirement.

To help give some flexibility with this, we have decided to allow applicants to submit the transcript they have at the time of the deadline (11:59 PM Monday, February 15th).  Applications will move on to the judging portion and during that time (March) applicants can submit their final 3.5 year transcript.  If an applicant fails to submit their final 3.5 year transcript by Tuesday, March 23rd at 11:59 PM, they will be disqualified from moving to the next round.

Monday, February 15th at 11:59 PM – Deadline for the Texas 4-H Foundation Opportunity Scholarship – must submit the transcript they have at that time.
Tuesday, March 23rd at 11:59 PM – Deadline for any applicant needing to submit an updated transcript to reflect 3.5 years.  Applicants will need to have their counselor or school administrator email the updated transcript to

I will be checking applications and notifying applicants should they not have a complete transcript (before the deadline only).

***IMPORTANT***  Anyone wishing to be considered for a 2021 Texas 4-H Foundation Opportunity Scholarship MUST submit a complete application (with transcript that is available to the applicant) by the February 15th deadline.  NO EXCEPTIONS will be made for late applications.



    • Please note that the availability of scholarships for 2020-2021 may be variable due a lack of fundraising opportunities and the ever changing situation presented to these groups by COVID-19.               
    • Application (Direct Link):
    • More information available on the website at
    • Changes for the 2021 Scholarship Application Process:
      • This year (and for the 2021-2020 year) applicants MUST have turned in recordbooks for 2 of the past 3 years for judging at the county level (this will be changed to 3 of the past 4 years in 2022-2023)
      • There will be no in-person interviews this year.  We are asking for applicants to submit a recorded video of them answering 5-7 questions chosen by the committee.  These questions will be released the day after the applications are due at the County Extension Office
    • Important Dates:
      • Friday, February 05, 2021              Applications released (online)
      • Thursday, May 13, 2021                 Applications due to CEO by 12:00 Noon
      • Friday, May 14, 2021                       Questions for recording interviews released to applicants
      • Wednesday, June 2, 2021              Recorded Scholarship Interviews due the CEO
      • Wednesday, June 2, 2021              4-H Recordbooks due to the CEO for scholarships
      • Monday, June 14, 2021                  County Recordbook Judging
      • Thursday, July 8, 2021                     District Recordbook Judging; TBA
      • Friday, July 30, 2021                        Bastrop County 4-H Achievement Banquet


Please let us know if you need anything or have any questions, and have a great weekend!

Please let us know if you have any questions and have a great week!!!


Mellanie L. Mickelson
Bastrop County Extension Agent – 4-H & Youth Development
Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Services

P.O. Box 650 | 901 Pecan Street | Bastrop, TX 78602
p: (512) 581-7186 | c: (512) 522-9174 | f: (512) 581-7187

Website –
Blog –
Facebook –