Find Out How Big the Largest Tomato Contest Winner is at N.J. Fair

11-year-old Cody Wright is by far the youngest of the nine competitors at the Salem County Fair’s Largest Tomato Contest, but he has something the other competitors don’t have. He has a pedigree… The tomato contest has a loyal following – with a lot of the same faces competing each year. Cody took the third place trophy last year and, as he enrolls in the competition this year with his primo red tomato, he sizes up the other tomatoes… David Lee, Salem County agricultural agent for the Rutgers University Cooperative Extension, runs the competition and weighs the tomatoes… "Everybody has their own secret and they don’t like to tell but some guys will stay up all night and put night lights on them and covers on them and grow them on straw and use special fertilizer," Lee said. "Everybody has their own thing."

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NJ 4-H Members to Attend 2015 4-H Leadership Program

New Jersey delegates who attended the 2014 Leadership Washington Focus held at the National 4-H Youth Conference Center in Chevy Chase, Maryland.

New Jersey delegates who attended the 2014 Leadership Washington Focus held at the National 4-H Youth Conference Center in Chevy Chase, Maryland.

Sixteen 4-H members have been selected to represent New Jersey at the second annual 4-H Leadership Washington Focus (LWF) Conference. This leadership conference will be held July 12-17 at the National 4-H Youth Conference Center in Chevy Chase, Maryland.

Leadership Washington Focus (LWF) is a 4-H leadership development program for 4-H members entering grades 7-9. Youth from across the nation will be participating in this 5-day event. The program will provide an opportunity for youth to listen to motivational speakers and participate in workshops that will develop communication skills, increase leadership capacity and build lifetime skills. [Read more…]

State 4-H Small Animal Educational Symposium Drew Participants from Nine Counties

Rabbit hopping in action.

Rabbit hopping in action.

Nearly 100 4-H members and volunteers representing nine counties (Cumberland, Gloucester, Hunterdon, Mercer, Middlesex, Monmouth, Ocean, Salem, and Warren) attended the State 4-H Small Animal Educational Symposium on Feb. 28 in Clayton, New Jersey.

“The State 4-H Small Animal Educational Symposium is an annual event, now in its second year, that offers  4-H’ers an opportunity to advance their knowledge and skills in topics related to poultry, reptiles, small animals, cavy and rabbits,” said Jeannette Rea Keywood, New Jersey 4-H Youth Development Program – Small Animal Project Advisory Council liaison. “In addition, the event provides a venue to compete at an advanced level and meet other 4-H members from around the state.” [Read more…]

NJ 4-H Avian Bowl Winter Event Contestants Gear-Up for State Qualifier Event Set for September

4H avian 3Nineteen 4-H members were part of six teams representing four counties (Hunterdon, Middlesex, Ocean, and Salem) who competed in the New Jersey 4-H Avian Bowl Winter Event held on February 28 in Gloucester County. This event was co-sponsored by Click Flic and held in conjunction with the State 4-H Small Animal Educational Symposium.

The 4-H Avian Bowl is a double elimination contest for teams patterned after other knowledge bowls. Teams consist of 2-4 members per team for both the Junior and Senior Divisions. Avian Bowl is an educational project, in which 4-H contestants must have a comprehensive knowledge of subject matter for several species of poultry, food safety, physiology, nutrition, eggs and other related subjects. [Read more…]

Salem County Agent Dave Lee Receives Two 2014 Rutgers Cooperative Extension Awards

RCE Director Larry Katz (l) presents Dave Lee with his award.

RCE Director Larry Katz (l) presents Dave Lee with his award.

Each year, Rutgers Cooperative Extension  (RCE), a unit of the New Jersey Agricultural Experiment Station (NJAES), honors faculty and staff for their outstanding work and outreach through their programs and support. The winners for 2014 received their awards at the Rutgers Cooperative Extension Annual Conference at the Cook Campus Center in New Brunswick on October 20.

This year, Dave Lee, Salem County agricultural agent and county extension department head was the recipient of two awards: the County Faculty Person of the Year and Award of Excellence for Faculty.  The County Faculty Person of the Year is awarded to a county faculty employee who has provided accomplishments, activities, programs, publications and services in the advancement of outreach in their county. RCE Excellence Awards is to recognize faculty, staff and volunteers who demonstrate outstanding performance and creativity, and their contribution to RCE, how it has resulted in a positive change or has made a significant impact and enhanced RCE at a local county, state and/or national level. [Read more…]