By Timothy Collins, Chair, Kern County Young Farmers & Ranchers
Last spring, the Young Farmers and Ranchers held a clay shoot fundraiser at 5 Dogs Range in hopes that we could launch a successful new annual fundraiser for the group. After a year of Covid shutdowns, we hoped it would be a way to bounce back. This year on March 5th, we held a very successful second annual clay shoot fundraiser and we are thankful and excited that this has already become our main fundraiser for the year. We are now planning and looking forward to our 3rd annual clay shoot next year.
The day started off with donuts and coffee on what proved to be a chilly morning after a rainy Friday. For once, we prayed that it wouldn’t rain. Cold weather notwithstanding, we had a team shooting at each of the twenty stations. Two stations in, I realized I had only hit one out of the first ten–only to be reassured by 5 Dogs staff saying the course was in fact more difficult than last year. I was up for the challenge and improved throughout the rest of the course. After shooting, we enjoyed tacos for lunch and then selected the winning tickets for the gun raffle, and the numerous other raffle items that had been generously donated. We finished up by giving out prizes for top teams and top individuals.
All of us with YF&R would like to say thank you to everyone who supported us by sponsoring or getting a team together, or both. We could not hold the event every year or even keep our YF&R club in action without you! This year we are looking forward to giving out more money than ever before through our Ag Grants to local 4H and FFA members. Be on the lookout for information regarding Ag Grant applications soon.
YF&R was also happy to partner with the Farm Bureau to co-sponsor the CSUB Ag Night Basketball game on March 3rd. Ag Night is an annual event that seeks to promote agriculture in the community by inviting all local FFA students and their families to attend a game for free—made possible by the sponsors. It was a fun night rooting for the home team in a game that was neck and neck and kept us on the edge of our seats to the last few seconds.
We, as young farmers, are making it a greater part of our mission as a club to reach out to and support the even younger future farmers. As a high school ag teacher myself, I think YF&R can be the next step for many graduating high school students interested in ag. The future is bright for youth in the Kern County agriculture industry and YF&R is here to make it possible.
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