A photo capturing a moment shared between two sisters at the 2012 Linn County 4-H/FFA Fair will hang in the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) headquarters in Washington D.C. during National 4-H Week, Oct. 7-13, 2012.
“Agriculture means time with my sister” was the title of the photo of Natalie and Halle Allen, of Marceline. The photo was taken during the Linn County Fair’s sheep show on Thursday, July 12, by the girls’ older sister, Katie Allen, who entered it in the USDA’s “This is MY Agriculture” 4-H Photography Contest, held in celebration of USDA’s 150th Anniversary. The contest was open to 4-H members, volunteers, alumni and staff. Katie submitted the photo as a 4-H alumni member and volunteer.
Natalie, 15, is a member of the Southeast Linn 4-H Club and livestock exhibitor at the fair. Halle, 6, was a participant in the fair’s Pee Wee Sheep Show. Katie, Natalie and Halle’s parents are Kevin and Brenda Allen of Marceline. Grandparents are Ron and Tressia Snyder, Brookfield, and Mary Allen, Marceline.
As one of four first-place winning photo entries, U.S. Secretary of Agriculture Tom Vilsack will also be sending an autographed copy of the photo to Katie. The photo contest consisted of an online public voting portion and an evaluation by judges representing 4-H and the agricultural industry. Photos were to reflect one of three areas of focus: citizenship in agricultural issues, how agriculture affects healthy living and the science behind agriculture.
The contest was meant to call attention to the fact that our country has experienced significant population shifts over the last 150 years. With fewer Americans living or working on farms, the visibility surrounding the value of farming has diminished.