MENOMONIE, Wis. (WEAU) - On a cold morning in rural Western Wisconsin, members of the Dunn County 4-H dairy judging team are getting in some practice. They look at four cows at a time and rank them.
Team member Abbie Powers says, "In dairy judging what we do is we evaluate the dairy cow on her production of milk." Every inch matters, "Because of her frame, 4 has a much higher, wider rear udder attachment," from their head all the way to their tail.
“We go to a farm, we look at the cows and then we have a mock contest where we judge a class of four cows, we write up a set of reasons and we give it to our coaches,” says team member Ben Styer.
The coaches and group of students have been judging together for years. “They encourage each other; they scrutinize each other because they want to be better," says Jim Powers, a coach for the team.
Fritzy Ullom, a member of the team, says "It's really good to have people that you know on your team and trust."
The team won the district contest first, then state, and even placing first at nationals.
"It's just a wonderful feeling to know that we finally accomplished this goal that we have set so many years ago and finally accomplishing it with the same people by my side is just a wonderful feeling."
Now, they are off to Scotland to represent the United States in the international competition. Coach Powers says, “I couldn't be more proud of them, they have done what we asked them to do. We have challenged them a lot, they have overachieved."
Practice makes perfect, and this group has put in a lot of time. "We have very fun coaches who make the practices enjoyable," says Styer.
When they think of all the cows they have judged over the years, there are too many to add up.
The Dunn County dairy judging team is hosting an all-you-can-eat spaghetti dinner to raise funds for their trip to Scotland. The dinner will take place at Dean and Sue's Bar and Grill in Menomonie at 5 PM on February 29th.