Angelina County Youth Fair kicks off with forestry skills competition

HUDSON, TX (KTRE) - Armed with sticks and compasses, 70 Angelina County students use their forestry skills to navigate, pace and identify their way through the woods.  

Angelina Youth Fair forestry competitor, Caleb Jones says forestry is a dying breed but it's important to economics.

Jones says, "This stuff is what makes the world go round because this is involved in everything that you do. You can't run a business without a load of paper and where does that come from that comes from trees everywhere."

Students from grades 7th through 12th worked their way through the woods in Hudson near the forestry office. The students compete in: compass and pace, tree volume, site index and identification hoping to move to district competition March 28th.

Angelina County Forestry Competition Committee Member, Ricky Gay says, "These skills are all designed as part of what we use in our industry, the forest industry to go out and manage the forest."

Central High School junior, Emily Avriett says most people don't know how to use a compass now-a-days but she does.

"A lot of people like for example have a compass on their iphones and they don't even know how to work them but they know that they iphone has it and I mean now you know how to use it and what it's used for," said Avriett.

Central High School junior, Megan Hampton says, "If you get stranded or something that's a big deal and it could be life or death depending on where you're at."

The students say forestry is a big deal in East Texas so its important to know about it.

"Like logging companies how many logs you have and it really depends on how much money  you're going to get back,"said Hampton.

Avriett said, "If you want to sell your trees you  need to kind of know what prices you're going to get and how to know how tall a tree is and how much volume you have in it."

The forestry competitors perfect their skills in forestry class or with their FFA or 4H groups.

The students who advance to the district competition will have the chance to earn either $1,000 or $500 dollar scholarships for college.

The winners of the competition will be announced at the youth fair awards ceremony, Saturday at 3:00PM at the George Henderson Expo Center.

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