By Brittany Justesen
For the News-Gazette
The Osceola County 4-H Horse Program is a great opportunity for youth to expand their knowledge and improve their horsemanship skill while having fun.
Youth will participate in activities to help improve their citizenship, leadership, sportsmanship and competitive spirit. The Osceola County 4-H Horse Program members not only gain horse knowledge, but they will also gain horse friends too.
The Osceola County 4-H Horse Program hosts a local horse show in the spring as well as multiple clinics, fun shows, educational programs and an annual awards program. The local horse shows allow youth to use the skills they have developed in the program. During these shows, youth compete in showmanship, western, reining, ranch riding, english, dressage, trail, hunter/jumper and speed events. At the local horse shows, each horse and rider has an opportunity to qualify to compete at the 4-H area horse show and 4-H state horse show. At each clinic, a different riding discipline is taught in addition to grooming, clipping and tack information. Educational workshops are provided each year to teach youth and adults about pasture management, horse health, nutrition, behavior and basic horse care. In addition to educational clinics and showing, youth may take part in horsemanship school, horse judging events, hippology contest, horse bowl, a horse public speaking contest and college scholarships.
The 4-H Horse Program can be an exciting experience for both youth and their horse. If you do not own a horse and are interested in joining the program, youth can lease a horse or pony to use for the show year. If you are between the ages of 8-18 years old and you have an interest and passion for horses this is a program you will love. If you would like to join 4-H and the Osceola County 4-H Horse Program or have additional questions, contact UF/IFAS Extension Osceola County 321-697-3000 to speak to Brittany Justesen the Livestock Extension agent.