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Minnesota Junior Holstein Board Successfully Hosts 2024 Jr. All-Breeds Convention

The 2024 Minnesota Junior All-Breeds Convention took place March 22-24, 2024, at the Best Western in Willmar, Minn. This convention is held for juniors under 21 who are passionate about the dairy community and the dairy cow. It was a great chance to meet new people throughout the state who share a common interest. Youth from across the state of Minnesota gathered on Friday, March 22nd, for the beginning of convention—themed Mooving to the Wild West. The Jeopardy and Prepared Public Speaking contests took place Friday afternoon again this year. All attendees enjoyed activities such as mixers and fun icebreakers and ended the night with the dairy knowledge bowl test.

Saturday of convention was a busy day filled with contests, tours, the annual awards banquet, and a dance. Juniors started the day by eating breakfast and competing in contests such as dairy quiz bowl. This was a chance for members to present their dairy industry knowledge. The juniors then enjoyed a luncheon followed by a tour of Building Blocks Dairy in Kerkhoven, MN. While at the farm, juniors learned about nutrition from Barry Visser. We also had Ridgewater host some wonderful workshops for the youth. Here, the juniors were able to do some hands-on activities like ultrasounding and using a Penn State shaker box. 

Later that evening, members dressed up for the annual awards banquet with keynote speaker Natasha Mortenson. She encouraged members to “find their brand.” Within the banquet this year, each breed had the opportunity to share any updates and show highlights with the juniors. It was fun to hear from the Ayrshire, Jersey, and Red and White Holstein organizations. The juniors were then recognized for their hard work by presenting awards to the winning production records, dairy jeopardy participants, dairy knowledge bowl teams, and prepared public speaking winners. Thad Schlauderaff was presented with the Distinguished Junior Member (DJM) award, Kamrie Mauer received the honor of Young Distinguished Junior Member(YDJM), and Eric Sonnek was presented with the MJHA’s Udder Best award for his amazing dedication to assisting the junior organization. Due to incoming weather, elections were held before the banquet which allowed the announcement of the new board members to take place at end of the banquet. The newly elected board members include Alexis Hoefs, Tyler Ratka, Shelby Swanson, Blake Siewert, Lanna Walter, and Jayden Schmitt. The night was capped off with juniors busting out their best moves on the dance floor.

On Sunday, the convention wrapped up with a business meeting, breakfast, and door prizes. The board allowed attendees to leave early so everyone would make it home safely! The 2023-2024 board was elected and is listed below.

President: Alexis Hoefs
Vice President: Tyler Ratka
Secretary: Allison Foss
Treasurer: Blake Siewert
Reporter: Shelby Swanson
Historian: Tyler Peters
All-Breeds Liaison: Dan Frericks
Director: Evelyn Scheffler
Director: Lanna Walter
Director: Jayden Schmitt

The 2023-2024 MJHA board would like to thank all the juniors who attended the convention and hope they had a fun-filled experience. The 2024-2025 board is excited to work as representatives for MJHA in the upcoming year. This year, the 2024 Minnesota State Show will be held in Sauk Centre, on June 11-15, and Minnesota Holstein Association’s Field Day will take place this year on June 22, at Do-N-Joy Genetics located in Arlington, MN. All juniors are encouraged to register to network with members who share a passion for the dairy community!

Contest Results:

Prepared Public Speaking Junior Division:
1st place: April Schroeder
2nd place: Toben Tibor

Prepared Public Speaking Senior Division:
1st place: Shelby Swanson
2nd place: Alexis Hoefs 

Folding Display Junior Division:
1st place: Austin Howe
2nd place: Tanner Howe

Photo Contest:
1st place: Toben Tibor
2nd place: Kamrie Mauer
3rd place: Brooklyn Holtz 

Quiz Bowl Juniors:
1st place: Team Armadillos, which consisted of Allison Ratka, Ella Lahr, Izzy Lahr, and Maddie Hoefs 2nd place: Team G.O.A.Ts, which consisted of Isabella Raths, Jonathan Raths, Clara Benrud, Ben Scheffler, and Jillian Timmerman
3rd place: Team Jr Cowgirls, which consisted of Livia Kurth, Kamrie Mauer, Briecyn Kurth, and Monika Frericks 

Quiz Bowl: Seniors
1st place: Team MindChangers, which consisted of Dan Frericks, Evie Scheffler, Calvin Benrud, and Tyler Peters.
2nd place: Team Outlaws, which consisted of Shelby Swanson, Lanna Walter, Haddie Walter, and Jayden Schmitt.
3rd place: Team B, which consisted of Ryan Rechtzigel, Matthew Scheffler, Maggie Wingert, Melony Wingert, Martina Wingert, and Mady Wingert. 

Dairy Jeopardy Junior Division:
1st place: Daphne Frericks
2nd place: Clare Caughey
3rd place: Charlie Nelson 

Dairy Jeopardy Intermediate Division:
1st place: Monika Frericks
2nd place: Ella Lahr
3rd place: Mausten Krueger

Dairy Jeopardy Senior Division:
1st place: Calvin Benrud
2nd place: Evelyn Scheffler
3rd place: Lanna Walter 

Junior High Production Award:
1st place: Alex Schroeder – Schroeder Doorman Toots
2nd place: Alex Schroder – Schroeder Doc Tootsie Roll
3rd place: Shelby Swanson – Threesisters Everleigh 

High School Senior Scholarship Winners:
Shelby Swanson

Junior Memorial Scholarship Winners:
Allison Foss
Alexis Hoefs
Evelyn Scheffler