Skip to Navigation Skip to Main Content
Courtesy photo

Jessica Kimbro: Area student competes in food event at fair with TV chef

Profile image for Jessica Kimbro
Jessica Kimbro

As summer nights wind down and quickly turn to fall, Denton County 4-H students have been very busy achieving big dreams and representing the area on a national level.

Denton County 4-Her Charlotte Murray competed in the Carnival Kids BBQ Challenge with Food Network celebrity chef Guy Fieri at the State Fair of Texas in Dallas last month. Charlotte was a top-3 finalist out of hundreds of applicants chosen to compete in the cooking competition, live on stage at the fair with Fieri.

Students were asked to submit a barbecue-themed recipe based off a set menu from Fieri's new restaurant aboard a Carnival Cruise Ship. Her dish was called the Gold Rush Barbecue Sandwich. Her recipe contained barbecue pork and macaroni and cheese, so of course it was a big hit with the judges. 

Charlotte, 10, is a fourth-grader who attends Corinth Elementary School where she participates in the Kid 2 Chef Club, which is a joint program with Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Denton County and the teachers at the school. This amazing contest was a fantastic sight to see and special thanks to Carnival Cruise Lines for sponsoring this dream event.

Hippology team competes in Ohio

The month of October was definitely a whirlwind for many of the youth of Denton County, from showing livestock at the State Fair of Texas to validating animals for up and coming major livestock shows all across Texas, to judging and competing at the All American Quarter Horse Congress in Columbus, Ohio. 

The AAQH Congress is the largest single-breed horse show in the world. Additionally, it is also the largest collegiate and youth judging contest with more than 65 teams of college students, 4-H, FFA and quarter horse youth members.

In June, the Denton County hippology team competed at State 4-H Roundup for a shot at the state title and an opportunity to compete at the national level. The Denton County team placed second, which secured them a spot as the Texas 4-H team at the All American Quarter Horse Congress. 

Team members Cailyn Simonis and Delany Simonis, both of Pilot Point, and Jade Allen of Flower Mound competed in a series of components such as horse judging, team challenge, written exam and team stations for the hippology contest in Ohio. 

Cailyn placed first in judging with the highest score ever at the event, while the team took first place in the judging contest. Jade placed sixth in individual judging and Delany placed seventh. In the written exam the team placed fifth and Jade took eighth in the individual exam. 

In Team Stations, the team took fifth place and Cailyn placed seventh. 

In the overall competition, Cailyn placed seventh, Jade placed 10th and the team finished fourth.  We are very proud of our national hippology team.

This year Denton County 4-H needs you. If you are interested in participating in our 4-H program, please contact the Denton County Extension Office for more information. Also be sure to follow us on Facebook @DentonCounty4H and Twitter @DentonCounty4H for updates, results and current information.

JESSICA KIMBRO is the 4-H and Youth Development county extension agent with Texas AgriLife Extension. She can be reached at 940-349-2884 or via email at

FEATURED PHOTO: Ten-year-old Charlotte Murray, a fourth-grader at Corinth Elementary School, is shown with Food Network chef Guy Fieri, left, during the Carnival Kids BBQ Challenge last month at the State Fair of Texas in Dallas. Charlotte was a top-3 finalist out of hundreds of applicants chosen to compete in the cooking competition.
Courtesy photo