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What do rockets, television, and poultry have in common?

Here's Jon right after the
2017 poultry prince 
and princess contest!

You may recognize his face as a reporter for WCCO-TV, but did you know Jon Lauritsen got his start in 4-H?

The Emmy award-winning reporter grew up in Chippewa County, Minnesota on a rural pig farm.

As a 4-H'er, Jon was involved in many different areas. "It's been 30 years now, but it was a great experience." A fond memory for Jon was being being able to shoot a rocket up into the sky as part of a 4-H aeronautics project.

After heading off to college at St. Cloud State University, Jon lost touch with his 4-H roots. It wasn't until many years later that a unique opportunity drew him back.

2010 was the first year of the Minnesota 4-H Poultry Prince and Princess Contest. This scholarship program is an opportunity for 4-H youth to be recognized for their poultry knowledge, experience, leadership and confidence. The final portion of this contest is a televised question and answer round. Jon was approached to host this program because of rural roots. "In Minneapolis Television stations there aren't many farm kids, and I was one of them. And I feel lucky for that. I really enjoy doing this." There must be something about this program that keeps him coming back.

Jon has hosted this program for eight years now. Each year, he becomes more impressed by how Minnesotans are positively impacted by 4-H. "Kids that are involved, companies that are involved, families that are involved...they don't get the recognition they deserve. They work hard."

We think so too, Jon! Thanks for hosting the Poultry Prince & Princess Contest each year.

We're proud to claim you as a Minnesota 4-H alum!

Written by Janelle Hueners
University of Minnesota student
Chisago County 4-H alum
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