Franklin County

4-H Achievement Night

Achievement Night activities offer 4-H members an opportunity to show what they have learned in their 4-H projects. By participating in Achievement Night, 4-H members can qualify to present demonstrations at the Missouri State Fair and to participate in the Educational Tour planned by the Achievement Night Committee. To qualify to go on the Educational Tour a member must earn a blue ribbon at Achievement Night. Please note that for all events, no live animals may be used (sometimes you can substitute a stuffed animal to demonstrate a livestock procedure). Below is a description of Achievement Night events:


Each member will receive a ribbon based on the quality of their participation in each event. Top contestants in each event will receive a special rosette ribbon. Those receiving blue ribbons will be invited to participate in the Educational Tour. Those giving demonstrations may qualify to give their demonstration at the Missouri State Fair. Some events allow winners to advance to state competition.

Show and Tell

Show and Tell is for first year members and Clover Kids only. You show and tell about something you have made or grown in your project. Tell briefly what the item is, and how you made it. You might also tell why you chose the item, and the easiest, and most difficult parts about making it. Keep the object visible at all times. Finish by reviewing what you have told the judge.

Public Speaking

View more information. Public Speaking divisions are Junior (age 8-10), Intermediate (age 11-13), and Senior (age 14 and older).

Prepared Speaking: Members can represent Franklin County at the State Public Speaking Contest by presenting a speech at Achievement Night. The three top speakers at Achievement Night will earn that honor. Members must prepare and present a speech on the topic of their choice. Speeches must be 3-5 minutes for Juniors, 4-6 minutes for Intermediate, and 5-7 minutes in length for Seniors. No visual aids are allowed.

Extemporaneous Speaking: An extemporaneous speech is one that you do not prepare for in advance. Members will draw three topics, spend up to 10 minutes deciding what they want to say about the topic, and then give the talk. Talks should be 3-5 minutes for Juniors, 4-6 minutes for Intermediate, and 5-7 minutes in length for Seniors. The top three in each division can participate in the state competition.

Technology Assisted Presentation: Presentations follow the same rules as Junior and Senior Public Speaking but allows the use of presentation software (such as PowerPoint) to support the presentation. A laptop computer and projector will be available. Think of this as an illustrated talk with the PowerPoint as the visuals. Presentations should be 3-5 minutes for Juniors, 4-6 minutes for Intermediate, and 5-7 minutes for Seniors. The top three in each division can participate in the state competition.

Horse Public Speaking Contest: Speech topic must relate to the Horse Industry and be 7-10 minutes in length. There are only two divisions in this event, Junior (age 8-13) and Senior (age 14 and older). Top junior and senior advance to state contest. Top senior at state participates in the National Contest. Complete information.

Interpretation: A Dramatic or Humorous oral presentation. The top 5 performers in each type of interpretation will advance to state.


A demonstration is showing and telling how to make something, or do something, you have learned in your project. Demonstrations should be 8-10 minutes in length (4-6 minutes for 1st to 3rd year members). Posters should be used to show recipes, outline steps in the process, or otherwise help the audience understand what is being done. Those who earn a blue ribbon at Achievement Night can take their demonstrations to the State Fair. You can find a great guide to help prepare a demonstration or illustrated talk.

Team Demonstrations: A team of two 4-H members present a demonstration. Follow the same guidelines for a demonstration or illustrated talk, but coordinate so that each member has a doing/showing and a talking part. Try to plan the presentation so both members have about equal responsibilities.

Special Demonstration Contests

There are several special demonstration contests open to Missouri 4-H members. Most of the contests are held at the Missouri State Fair in August. Awards range from trips to participate in national contests to cash prizes. Members may want to consider these when choosing a demonstration topic for Achievement Night. Additional guidelines and information can be found at: 4-H State Fair.

Cooking With Honey Contest. The demonstrator must use honey grown or made by a Missouri honey producer or company; provide the honey producer or company’s name; give nutrition information; the health benefits of honey and the benefits of pollinators. The demonstrator must present a finished product for judges’ sampling and a recipe handout for the judges.

Egg Demonstration Contest: Contact the Extension Center for contest rules. Top senior demonstrator will participate in the National Contest in Louisville, KY. Information to help prepare for the contest can be obtained by contacting: Jesse Lyons, UMC Animal Science Extension, S-103 Animal Sciences Center, UMC, Columbia, Mo. 65211; phone 573-882-0247. More information at:

Pork Demonstration Contest: Members must be enrolled in a foods or swine Project. Demonstration may be on any facet of pork including food, nutrition, production practices, or by-products. Prizes awarded for 1st - 3rd place in three age divisions. Animals may not be used.

International Topic Demonstration Contest: Demonstrations can be about an item that is made in another country, used in another country, or originates from another country. It should include information about the place where the item originates and the people who use the item. If the item is a food item a copy of the recipe, nutrition information, and a sample of the finished product should be given to the judges. Time limit: 7-10 minutes.

Missouri Grown Foods Demonstration Contest: Demonstration must use a food product produced by a Missouri company, give background on the company, and provide nutrition and preparation information. Three awards will be given in each age category. Time limit: 7-10 minutes. You can get a copy of the Agri-Missouri Buyers' Guide by calling 1-888-MOBRAND or at

Electric Theatre Demonstrations: Demonstration can be on any subject but must use electricity, include information on electricity, or be about a phase of the 4-H Electricity Project. Can be on any subject. For example, a visual arts demonstration on wood burning might include some information on safety involving an electric wood burning tool.

Horse Demonstrations: Demonstrations/Illustrated Talk must relate to the Horse Industry and be 9-12 minutes in length. Top junior and top senior advance to state contest. Team Horse Demonstrations: Demonstration/Illustrated Talk is presented by a team of two members. Presentations should be 5-10 minutes for Juniors and 10-15 minutes for Seniors. The top Junior and Senior team will participate in the state contest. Complete information.

Working Demonstrations - Length of time: Approximately 30 minutes. Project enrollment: May be enrolled in any 4-H project. Working demonstrations are more casual than General Demonstrations. Working demonstrators do not use a microphone or stage. Youth work on a project while responding to fair-goers questions. A poster giving the topic of the demonstration and the 4-H member’s name can be displayed on the table during the working demonstration.