Louisiana was one of 15 states that competed in the 33rd annual National 4-H Forestry Invitational from July 22 through July 26, 2012. The invitational was held at West Virginia University Jackson’s Mill State 4-H Camp and Conference Center near Weston, West Virginia.
Teams from Tennessee, Alabama, and New York placed first, second and third respectively. The Louisiana team was well prepared and did a fine job representing Louisiana by finishing 8th overall.
Louisiana was represented by Garrett Gardner from Clinton, Adam Mallett from Gueydan, and Tyler Roberts from Natchitoches. The state team was coached by area forester Keith Hawkins from DeRidder and trained by area forester Brian Chandler of Clinton. These team members were selected to represent Louisiana based on their performance in the 4-H University (short course) Forestry Contest in June 2012. Out of 19 contestants at 4-H University, Garrett Gardner had a blue ribbon performance finishing 3rd, thus securing him a spot on the state team.
While at the invitational, 4-H members competed for overall team and individual awards in several categories. Events included tree identification, tree measurement, compass and pacing, insect and disease identification, topographic map use, forest evaluation, the forestry bowl and a forestry written exam.
Michael Crenshaw of Tennessee also received the high point individual award. Second place high individual award was given to Brandon Bounds of Alabama and third place high individual award was given to Ben Calhoun of Alabama.
4-H is a youth education program operated by the Cooperative Extension Service of the U.S. Department of Agriculture's National Institute of Food and Agriculture and the state land grant universities. More than 5.5 million young people participate in 4-H and nearly 100,000 are part of the 4-H Forestry Program.
Some information in this article was provided by David Jackson, Penn State Cooperative Extension Service.
The LSU AgCenter and the LSU College of Agriculture