With all of its four contestants delivering competitive performances, the LaGrange County 4-H Tractor program continued its tradition of achievement in the annual Purdue Area XI 4-H Tractor Contest held on July 26 at the LaGrange County 4-H Fairgrounds.
LaGrange County youth claimed two of the 18 qualifying slots at the Indiana State 4-H Tractor Contest to be held on August 16 at the Indiana State Fair. Thirty-eight youth from area counties competed for the 18 slots. Contestants finishing third or higher in each division advance to the state finals.
The competition format consists of junior and senior divisions in lawn and garden, zero radius mower, and farm tractor. The contest includes a safety evaluation, a written quiz, parts identification, and timed performance driving.
Leading the way for LaGrange County was Matthew Howe who won the senior zero radius competition. Howe was LaGrange County’s only entrant in the division.
In the lawn and garden class, Coy Wolheter captured the junior lawn and garden crown. LaGrange County’s Leyton Keipper finished seventh.
Austin Beiswanger finished fourth in a closely contested senior farm tractor division.
Adult volunteers serving the county 4-H program this year included Mark Howe and David and Jerry Perkins. Tractors were donated for use in the competition by Greenmark Equipment, Archbold Equipment and the Stroh Fix It Shop. The support and professionalism of local dealers makes this type of youth development program possible.
Area XI of the Purdue Cooperative Extension Service consists of nine Northeastern Indiana counties.