A Look at a 4-H/Youth Show
My name is Lindsey Lauterbach, and I am 14 years
old. I am homeschooled and currently in the ninth
grade. I live in Western Washington, where I breed,
raise, and show Mini Rex rabbits. I also have a
few Japanese Harlequins. I have been raising rabbits
for almost a year now and have won many awards.
I am active in my 4-H club, the Sequim Kreature
Keepers, where I am the president, teen leader,
and Webmaster. I am also quite active in showing
my rabbits, sometimes traveling across the entire
state just for a rabbit show. My goals are to
become a succesful rabbit raiser and eventually
an ARBA judge
just came back from a rabbit show this weekend (April
21, 2001) in Kennewick, WA. We traveled eight hours
(one-way) to get there, but it was worth it. The
Rada Rabbits 4-H/Youth Show was a big hit. The people
were friendly, and the competiton was great! About
150 rabbits altogether were entered in the various
breeds. The largest class was, of course, the Netherland
Dwarf. They are really popular with younger children.
I am finding more and more, though, that the youth
are turning to Mini Rex as an alternative to the
ever-popular Netherlands. We had about 40 Mini Rex
shown at this show, which is fairly small, considering
that we have upwards of 150 at most youth shows.
I was interested to see the variety of colors, though.
Some beautiful reds were exhibited by a breeder who
lives in the Tri-Cities area. This was great, considering
Reds are quite rare in the Pacific Northwest.
The judge for the ARBA Sanctioned Youth Show was Michelle
Uptagrafft, a youth herself. Actually, she is 19 and
technically too old to show in youth. She is a great
judge, though. She has won the ARBA Queen title twice
and has been raising rabbits for 10 years. She's always
very thorough when it comes to comments.
I brought six Mini Rex (my Castors, Brokens, and one
Black) and one of my Japanese Harlequins. I was happy
with how I did - I placed at the top in most of my
classes. I was extremely shocked, however, when Michelle
chose my Black Sr. Buck for BOV (Best of Variety),
BOB (Best of Breed), and then Reserve in Show! This
was my first BOB (Best of Breed) with a Mini Rex and
my first Reserve In Show. I was almost crying! It was
such an honor. I received a beautiful rosette and a
14-inch high trophy. I was also privileged to receive
BOG (Best of Group) and BOB (Best of Breed) Harlequin,
though this wasn't as exciting as my win in the Mini
Rex, because I was the only one exhibiting a Harlequin.
I did have the opportunity to talk with Nancy Richmond
(a very well-known Harlequin raiser) who was there
judging cavies. It was great talking with a knowledgable
person about Harlequins. They really are a fantastic
breed, but such a challenge.
I also signed up for
the 4-H Senior Fitting and Showing Class. There were
about eight Seniors from various
parts of the state, and all of them knew their rabbits.
This was my second show as a Senior (I was a Intermediate
last year) and my first time fitting and showing with
a new Mini Rex (a Broken Tort named "Dot").
I worked hard and tried to study before my turn came,
but watching the judging and other distractions kept
me from studying as much as I wanted to. That's why
I was shocked when I received Grand Champion Senior
Fitting and Showing!
I enjoyed answering the questions that the judge,
Mary Ness, asked us. I especially enjoyed judging the
Dutch rabbit that belonged to the person next to me.
Everyone was very kind and thoughtful. One thing to
always remember for this type of competition is to
make eye contact with the judge. This lets he or she
know that you are secure and confident with what you
are talking about. It is also helpful to know about
breeds other than the one you are showing when you
reach the higher levels of fitting and showing. You
never know when the judge might ask you about the rabbit
next to you.
I had a lot of fun at the Rada Rabbits 4-H/Youth show
in Kennewick. I made new friends and had a chance to
talk with some old ones, too. I can't wait until next