Athletes of the 4-H fair: Derek Thompson


Name: Derek Thompson

Grade: Junior

School: Brownstown Central High School

Sports: Football, basketball, track

Number of years involved in 4-H: 8

Which 4-H activities are you involved in at the fair: Beef and sheep

Q: How do you balance your sports and 4-H responsibilities?

A: “Sports takes up a majority of my time. The time that I don’t spend on sports, I try to spend doing things I enjoy, like hanging with family and friends, or getting important chores done. I usually have the evenings to myself since my sports practices take place in the morning. I try to spend three to four nights a week working on my 4-H projects for about an hour or more.”

Q: What is your typical schedule like during the summer when it comes to 4-H and sports? What is an average day like?

A: “My schedule is usually very tight. June is always a tough month because I have basketball and football going on at the same time. Making time for 4-H is tough at times due to being very busy. An average day would be to wake up at 6 a.m. and go to basketball until 8 and then head to football until 11:30, go to work and then, depending on the day, I would have basketball in the evenings. If I didn’t have basketball, I would be washing our sheep and cattle for the fair.”

Q: Why are you involved in both 4-H and athletics?

A: “There is always a challenge in working to be successful. Like in sports, the amount of time and hard work you put into practice will determine how well you perform. If I wash and lead my cattle and sheep every night, they will look good and cooperate well when the fair comes around and it is time to show them. They both also teach me many life skills that I can use when I get older.”

Q: What is something you’ve learned from 4-H that translates to your sport or vice versa?

A: “One of the biggest things I’ve learned from sports is that you always need to be willing to work hard and have a good mindset. In every sport, I need to have the mindset that I’m going to get better today and work as hard as I can. This carries over to 4-H and is very helpful. I have to work hard and put in time in order to make sure my animals are ready for the fair so I can have great success when showing.”

Q: Why would you encourage someone in 4-H to also participate in athletics?

A: “I would encourage someone to participate because they could learn a lot and meet new people. They would be experiencing things some people don’t get to do. They could be part of a winning team and make memories that will last a lifetime. They could learn not just how to play the sport but life skills, as well.”

The Tribune recently spoke with five different Jackson County athletes that are also involved in 4-H. These fair features started Monday and conclude in today’s edition of The Tribune.

No posts to display