A high resolution photo of the 4-H pledge bears is available at the end of this story.
AMES, Iowa – Don’t fax, telephone or mail holiday 4-H gift orders. In sync with a growing trend, the Iowa 4-H Foundation hopes customers will order items online and help promote 4-H in the process.
On the National 4-H Supply Center’s Web site, located at http://www.4-hmall.org/, visitors will find the 4-H mall, which has a variety of items for sale.
“You can find everything from pins and metals to cups to hooded sweatshirts. They even have a 4-H T-shirt for your dog,” said Albert Grunenwald, associate director of the Iowa 4-H Foundation. “Anything and everything you can put 4-H on you can find at the 4-H mall.”
Ten percent of the online sales from Iowa come back to the Iowa 4-H Foundation to help promote 4-H. Currently there are 126,000 Iowa 4-H members, which is one-fourth of all Iowa youth in grades K-12. The foundation’s goal is to raise that number by three percent annually.
Customers also can support 4-H by ordering holiday gift items from the foundation's own store. The latest entries in the Iowa 4-H bear series, Can-Do and Carbo, represent the hands and health of the 4-H pledge and are now available. Clever (head) and Cardio (heart) were released in 2006 and complete the set of four that were preceded by Clarion (1999), Clover (2000), Clarinda (2001), Curtiss (2002), Chloe (2003), Champ (2004), Camper (2005). The limited-edition bears are made for Iowa only.
Again this year, order the ABC storybook “A 4-H Story: Helping Hands, Caring Hearts,” as well as the CD, “Songs of the 4-H Clover.” The storybook was written and illustrated by two Iowa 4-H alumni and will help readers young and old discover the history of the 4-H youth movement and opportunities it offers young people.
The CD contains eight songs conducted by the late Max Exner and performed by the Chamber Singers of Iowa State. Originally recorded on LP Record in 1963, this album was made to “encourage singing in club meetings and other 4-H events.” It also includes song lyrics and historical notes.
A set of the four bears can be purchased for $36 or $10 individually. The CD is $10 and the book is $5 (plus shipping and handling). Orders can be placed at http://www.iowa4hfoundation.org/store/index.htm.